War over Monsanto gets ugly

Tuesday 09 November 2010

NOTE: This article exposes the dangers of the supposedly benign herbicide glyphosate–marketed as “RoundUp”.  “RoundUp Ready” trees, capable of withstanding large applications of the herbicide are already being developed.  It is expected that just as “RoundUP Ready” crops resulted in increased use of herbicides of up to 300%, “RoundUp Ready” trees will also lead to huge increases in the use of the herbicide on GE tree plantations–resulting in more contaminated water, polluted soils and dangerous impacts on the health of nearby communities.   —Anne Petermann, STOP GE Trees Campaign Coordinator


by: Mike Ludwig, t r u t h o u t | News Analysis


A delegation of politicians and community activists gathered on August 7 in La Leonesa, a small farm town in Argentina, to hear Dr. Andres Carrasco speak about a study linking a popular herbicide to birth defects in Argentina’s agricultural areas.

But the presentation never happened. A mob of about 100 people attacked the delegation before they could reach the local school where the talk was to be held.

Dr. Carrasco and a colleague locked themselves in a car as the mob yelled threats and beat on the vehicle for two hours. One delegate was hit in the spine and has since suffered lower-body paralysis. Another person was treated for blows to the head. A former provincial human rights official was hit in the face and knocked unconscious.

Witnesses said the angry crowd had ties to local officials and agribusiness bosses, and police made little effort to stop the violence, according to human rights group Amnesty International http://www.amnesty.org/en/library/asset/AMR13/005/2010/en/303e9ee6-9138-405f-97fc-ed58965b76d0/amr130052010en.html.

Carrasco is a lead embryologist at the University of Buenos Aires Medical School and the Argentinean national research council. His study, first released in 2009 and published in the United States this past summer, shows that glyphosate-based herbicides like Monsanto’s popular Roundup formula caused deformations in chicken embryos that resembled the kind of birth defects being reported in areas like La Leonesa, where big agribusinesses depend on glyphosate to treat genetically engineered crops.

Advertisement for Faena (RoundUp) in Chiapas, Mexico. Photo: Langelle/GJEP

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