The Guardian Online recently published a feature on neurosurgeon Henry Marsh who has carried out much work in the Ukraine. Henry is showing them all how to do it out there and remarked that the Ukraine is like a Trabant that wants to be a Ferrari. Henry has featured on this blog previously (see post ‘News Round Up, May 12 2017’). He spent most of his career at the Atkinson Morley Hospital and St George’s Hospital Medical School. I have never met Henry Marsh nor did I ever hear anything about him whilst I worked at St George’s, but his colleagues concealed the criminal activities of Dr Dafydd Alun Jones, Dr Tony Francis (Dr X) and Gwynedd Social Services, who in turn were facilitating a paedophile ring (see post ‘Some Very Eminent Psychiatrists From London…’). Henry Marsh may be a thoroughly decent man but he must have known what some of his colleagues were getting up to, particularly as one of them, Professor Oliver Brooke, was imprisoned for the possession of child porn in 1986 and two others, Professor Geoffrey Chamberlain and Malcolm Pearce, perpetuated a major research fraud which became a public scandal in 1994 (see post ‘I Don’t Believe It!’).
The Ukraine is by no means the only Trabant that wants to be a Ferrari. St George’s experienced the same phenomenon, as did huge swathes of the rest of the UK medical establishment and they haven’t changed. Who knows, the Top Doctors in the Ukraine might be prepared to actually do some work in an effort to transform themselves into a Ferrari, instead of simply bullying, lying and cheating…
I was reminded of my days at dear old St George’s again yesterday – I had the biggest surprise that I’ve had for a long while. I am currently reading Jon Snow’s book ‘Shooting History, A Personal Journey’ and I have reached the chapter in which Snow describes his trip to El Salvador in 1981, by which time the Salvadorean Civil War was underway. The US-backed El Salvadorean junta’s death squads were massacring civilians and Snow saw bodies everywhere, including bodies of children, but the guerrillas of the FMLN who were fighting the junta were incredibly dangerous as well. The FMLN was the main participant in the Salvadorean Civil War and they raised funds for their activities by holding up any unarmed vehicles and robbing the occupants. The FMLN killed people too. Jon Snow’s book mentions that he – whilst working at that time for ITN – had an incredibly helpful ‘informant’ from whom most of his scoops came, who had grown up in El Salvador, founded a guerrilla movement and had then fled to London in fear of his life. In 1981 Snow’s informant was FMLN’s representative in Europe. Snow wrote his book in 2004 and mentions that at the time of writing the former guerrilla was a member of the medical establishment in London and had been part of a Nobel Prize winning team. Snow tells us that the man in question was Dr Salvador Muncada. I knew exactly who Snow was talking about – it was the pharmacologist Salvadore Moncada (Snow spelled his name incorrectly), who is now Professor Sir Salvadore Moncada. The vile specimens whom I worked with at St George’s were colleagues and friends of Moncada and I heard much about him. Not that any of us were told that he was a former guerrilla from El Salvador – the story given to the uninitiated was that Moncada ‘was Spanish’ and was ‘really brilliant’. Moncada was Director of Research for the Wellcome Trust Laboratories at that time. Something else was said about Moncada as well – that he would definitely be receiving a Nobel Prize. Moncada’s glory rubbed off on those working with him – I was told by medical students and staff at St George’s that Patrick Vallance, Moncada’s mate and the man who told me that Moncada was Spanish, was probably in line for a Nobel Prize as well. Patrick Vallance was a physician and pharmacologist at St George’s who, like Henry Marsh, knew how serious the misconduct of some of his colleagues was. I don’t know how many people at St George’s knew what the reality of Moncada’s history was – the students won’t have known, but I bet that Vallance did.
When I was at St George’s, Patrick Vallance was one of the people whom I had a very bad experience with. I had been asked to work with him when I first arrived there and everything started off very well – which was how I got to hear about the wonders of Moncada and it was mentioned that I should try and work with him myself one day. Then, as explained previously on this blog, senior colleagues at St George’s started becoming very angry indeed that I had made complaint about the paedophiles’ friends in north Wales and I was literally ordered not to make any more representations about them and to forget about north Wales and make a life in London. This was not friendly advice from concerned people, it was a command accompanied by threats to my career. I had no idea at that time that people at St George’s had direct links with those we know and love in north Wales and that some of the parties had been in direct contact with each other and had even been intercepting my mail at St George’s. People in the dept in which I was based, the Dept of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, became incredibly aggressive and hostile towards me although they weren’t particularly pleasant to anyone – workplace bullying, class based snobbery and casual racism were the order of the day there (see post ‘St George’s Hospital Medical School, 1989/1990…’). The poison did not seem to have spread to the Pharmacology Dept where Patrick Vallance was based, so I just presumed that they were all a bit unhinged in Obs and Gynae. My work with the pharmacologists was going very well and after a while a visiting Prof arrived at St George’s to review people’s work. He asked to see my work and when I showed him my results he became very enthusiastic and told me that I really ought to show them to Professor John Vane, his colleague at Barts because he thought that I might have hit on something quite exciting. The visiting Prof, Nick Wald, was not a pharmacologist, he was an epidemiologist. I told my PhD supervisor, the dreadful Cathy Wilson, that Prof Wald wanted me to go over to Barts to see John Vane, whereupon Cathy Wilson screamed at me that someone like me doesn’t go to see John Vane, didn’t I realise that he was such a big name that he had been given a knighthood. I tried to explain that Prof Nick Wald knew John Vane and that this was virtually an invitation – whereupon Wilson ordered me not to contact John Vane.
After I was banned from contacting John Vane, I encountered a problem. Some of my equipment in the lab in the Dept of Pharmacology broke down. An even bigger problem was that no-one would fix it. I told a number of people that the water bath was faulty and I was ignored. I then stopped using it, hoping for it be repaired – only to be faced with Wilson hurling abuse at me for being lazy and ordering me to get back to work. With the faulty water bath in the pharmacology dept. I had no choice but to work with the faulty water bath. At which point Patrick Vallance walked into the lab, hit the roof and told me that he would not believe any of my data. He never spoke to me again. No-one offered to fix the water bath. I was not provided with any more equipment. Shortly after, I was arrested at the behest of the paedophiles friends’ in north Wales – after they had perjured themselves and had even been told by their own lawyers to drop their litigation against me. I left St George’s and was very glad to see the back of all of them, but as regular readers of this blog know, my adventures simply continued when and after I was admitted to Springfield Hospital, the mental health unit attached to St George’s (see post ‘Some Very Eminent Psychiatrists From London…).
Until recently, I presumed that the madness of St George’s was confined to the Dept of Psychiatry and the Obs and Gynae Dept. It has become very clear that it wasn’t. I had also always presumed that Vallance and his colleagues were not involved in the sort of lies and deception that some others at St George’s were up to their eye-balls in and that he had genuinely not understood that I had been told to work with faulty equipment, had presumed that none of my results could ever have been used and that’s why he stormed off.
I have since received information that there was a substantial problem throughout St George’s with corruption, that it was long-standing and permeated the whole of the institution. So after reading about Salvadore Moncada’s history as a terrorist in El Salvadore and realising that Patrick Vallance was passing him off as Spanish, I thought that I’d see what I could find out about Moncada.
Salvadore Moncada’s wiki entry tells us he was born in Dec 1944 in Honduras but that he moved to El Salvador with his family in 1948. Moncada studied medicine at Facultad de Medicina, Universidad de El Salvador, 1962-70 and in 1971 arrived in London to do a PhD with John Vane in the Dept of Pharmacology at the Institute of Basic Medical Sciences at the Royal College of Surgeons. After a short period of research in Honduras, Moncada then moved to the Wellcome Research Labs at Beckenham, Kent, where he became Director of Research in 1986. In 1996 Moncada moved to UCL where he set up the Wolfson Institute for Biomedical Research, of which he was Director until 2012.
Wiki tells us that whilst at the Royal College of Surgeons Moncada collaborated in the discovery that aspirin-like drugs inhibit prostaglandin synthesis; that in 1975 at the Wellcome Labs he led the team which discovered thromboxane synthase and the vasodilator prostacyclin; that whilst Director of Research at Wellcome Moncada presided over the discovery and development of lamotrigine (an anti-epilepsy drug), atovaquone (an anti-malarial) and zomig (a migraine treatment), as well as initiating work which resulted in the development of lapatinib (for the treatment of breast cancer). We are also told by wiki that Moncada was responsible for the identification of nitric oxide as a biological mediator, that the work regarding the biological synthesis of nitric oxide in the cardiovascular system came from his lab, as well as some fundamental information about the role of nitric oxide in the peripheral CNS and in cancer. Moncada’s later work focused on areas of mitochondrial biology and cell metabolism. Most recently, his work has led to the finding of the molecular mechanism that co-ordinates cell proliferation.
When I was left to work with broken equipment in 1990, Patrick Vallance was working with Moncada on nitric oxide and vascular pathology and it was this work which people were raving about and expecting them to bag a Nobel Prize for. Moncada was indeed at that time Director of Research at the Wellcome Labs – that bit at least is true. Whilst wiki doesn’t pretend that Moncada is Spanish, it makes no mention of him leading a guerrilla movement or fleeing to London to save his skin. Or of having been the FMLN’s representative in Europe. Now if one is following a career as a Top Doctor and is in pursuit of a Nobel Prize, I can understand that one wouldn’t advertise one’s former activities as the leader of a guerrilla movement – in 1981, when Snow maintains that Moncada was the representative of the FMLN in Europe, the FMLN was perceived as being on the side of the poor and dispossessed but it was still closely associated with guerrillas. It wasn’t until 1992 that the FMLN became a legal political party of the left in El Salvador. Even then FMLN replaced their former guerrilla leader with a TV journalist in an effort to clean up their image. The FMLN was formed in Oct 1980 as an umbrella group for five long-standing guerrilla movements – all with incredibly bloody, brutal histories. Moncada left for London in 1971 – long, long before the FMLN even tried to attain a degree of acceptance politically. He was presumably the leader of one of the guerrilla groups which later formed the FMLN – there is info available about those groups, but Moncada’s name does not appear online. Wouldn’t be too good for PR would it Salvadore?
So – I wondered how Salvadore had managed to gain a foothold in London in 1971 in John Vane’s research team. It’s not every day that the leader of a terrorist group knocks on the door of a pharmacology research team and is registered for a PhD. Being me, I wondered of Moncada might have had some very damning info about the US-backed regime in El Salvador, which could have been massively politically sensitive and useful to people wanting to help him. He probably did – he obviously retained a big interest in El Salvadorean politics for a very long while, because in 1981 he was the FMLN’s representative in Europe. As well as discovering all these new drugs and molecules – er, are you thinking what I’m thinking? Something’s not right here. Being a world leading scientist is not a part-time activity.
It is well-established that during the Salvadorean Civil War, the US-backed junta did the most appalling things. This was when nothing could be allowed to disrupt Thatcher’s special relationship with Reagan, not even death squads assassinating nuns, priests, doctors, nurses, journos, pregnant women and children. Moncada will have had the most serious dirt on many people and he will have known how to use it – he was a former guerrilla leader turned political negotiator. It could explain some of that funding that he was so successful in landing…
I now realise why I was not allowed near John Vane et al. Christ almighty, I was blowing the whistle on a bunch of Top Doctors in north Wales who were involved in criminal activities, what was I going to do if I discovered that a former guerrilla leader was a big cheese in UK pharmacology and that yet more lies were being told?
However, the mysteries regarding Professor Sir Salvadore just deepened when I read more.
In April 2005 the Times Higher Education Supplement published an article by Anna Fazackerley regarding her meeting ‘a living legend’. Yes, Anna had met Salvadore – according to Anna, Salvadore is ‘south American’ and Salvadore stated that ‘I’m not interested in the limelight’. Anna tells us that Moncada trained as a doctor in El Salvador in the late 1960s, ‘although he says that he never seriously considered a clinical career…while he was studying he grew increasingly angry about the political abuses he saw in his country and decided that he had to speak out. As a result, he was imprisoned, persecuted and finally expelled.’
Moncada did more than ‘speak out’. He led a guerrilla movement. They were not very nice – they murdered people. Not just members of the junta either – anyone who got in their way, including the poor and dispossessed, women and children.
Anna quotes Moncada as saying ‘I have a basic disgust for injustice. The worst form of injustice – from one human directly to another – is what I cannot bear’.
So THAT’S why he became a violent terrorist before he cleaned up his act and worked as a pharmacologist with colleagues who assisted some criminals who were facilitating a paedophile ring!
Why did Salvadore murder people? It was because he was ‘moved’ ‘to do things in a society that was so corrupt’. So what’s your explanation for working with that bunch of shits at St George’s who assisted a paedophile ring then Salvadore?
Fazackerley notes that ‘although the consequences were severe, he is unrepentant. “I’m not sorry, not at all. My views haven’t changed – I’ve mellowed with age but I still feel the same way”…’
Why would this man ever worry about the victims of the North Wales Paedophile Ring who were found dead after they’d complained?
Moncada’s account to the THES – as told by Fazackerley – of how he arrived in the UK is fascinating. It was ‘an accident of fate’. After he was ‘banished to the Honduras where he was born, the young Moncada was separated from his wife who remained in El Salvador. They used to meet in neighbouring Guatemala and it was here that a friend and Professor of Physiology ‘pulled strings’ to get him in the UK. The friend, Fernando Molina, wrote a letter of recommendation to a colleague from his student days at the Royal College of Surgeons in London, the pharmacologist (and Nobel laureate) John Vane. An answer came almost immediately. Vane didn’t know who this chap Moncada was but if his friend Molina rated him that was qualification enough. In February 1971 Moncada, who barely spoke any English, joined Vane’s team in London. Within months his name was on one of three now classic papers…his stellar research career had begun’.
OK. Many PhD supervisors do accept students on the recommendation of their colleagues, but they do usually want evidence of the potential student’s work. Moncada hadn’t been working in pharmacology – he’d been leading a terrorist movement. Furthermore, he spoke barely a word of English. The London medical schools are not only centres of entrenched racism – even today, let alone in 1971 – but the language of science is English. Particularly in England. How did Moncada manage to get by in the lab on a day to day basis, yet alone contribute to three classic papers within months of beginning a PhD? Any PhD student knows that finding your feet and waiting for the first results, let along writing them up as three classic articles, is not something that is achieved ‘within months’ of registering for your PhD.
As for coming to the UK – Moncada told the THES that the ‘majority of my classmates went to the US for training and several have had very successful careers there’ but ‘for me coming to the UK was the right choice. I’ve been treated extremely well and have been given all sorts of opportunities’.
Moncada couldn’t have gone to the US – he’d have been arrested or assassinated. In fact I’m very surprised that Moncada hasn’t been assassinated in the UK. International terrorism is not a nice business. Er – did you by any chance change your identity Moncada? Is that why your name doesn’t appear anywhere in relation to the FMLN?
WHO is Professor Sir Salvadore Moncada?
And how did he deal with those trivialities like a passport and ID when he entered the UK after being expelled from El Salvador following his imprisonment for terrorist activities?
Anna of the THES mentions that the phrase ‘good fortune’ crops up a lot in his conversations. Good fortune? A massive criminal network is what I suspect has been responsible for Moncada’s success.
Things get even less clear when one reads an interview with Moncada conducted with Richard Thomas as part of a Wellcome Trust Project conducted by Dr Tilli Tansey (Wellcome Trust Centre for the History of Medicine, UCL) and Professor Leslie Iversen (Dept of Pharmacology, University of Oxford). During this interview Moncada explains that his mother’s family were European Jews who left Europe in approx. 1938 and fled to Honduras and that whilst at medical school in El Salvador, Moncada was a ‘student activist’. In this interview once more Moncada tells us how after he was expelled from El Salvador he used to meet his family monthly in Guatemala – he had a small daughter who lived with his wife in Honduras. Moncada explains that he knew Professor Fernando Molina of Guatemala because he had been on Sabbatical in El Salvador when Moncada was a student, so he asked Molina if he could help him get to Europe. Molina told Moncada that he had known John Vane about seven or eight years previously when he worked with Vane at the Royal College of Surgeons. Molina had been friends with John Vane and although Molina hadn’t written to John Vane for six or seven years, Molina was happy to drop him a line. After the meeting with Molina, Moncada went back to El Salvador and his wife and daughter returned to Honduras. ‘Almost by return of post’ Vane wrote back to Moncada and said ‘I don’t know who you are. I don’t know anything about your background, but if my good friend Fernando Molina is saying you can come here, I will take you’.
There are still no clues as to why John Vane accepted as a PhD student an overseas graduate about whom he knew absolutely nothing who had not shown any interest in a career in pharmacology. Who funded Moncada whilst he was working for Vane? It won’t have been his country because they’d imprisoned him and thrown him out. Why was this enormous favour done for Moncada – by one Professor whom Moncada had bumped into as an undergrad whilst the Professor was on a sabbatical and by one of the biggest names in UK pharmacology? We also have a new rather interesting part of Moncada’s biography to consider now – his mother’s family were European Jews who had fled the rise of the Nazis. Why the hell did they go to Honduras? It was not a standard destination for Jews escaping Hitler. But can we believe any part of this biography – Moncada was a terrorist who had escaped to the UK rather than be assassinated, it’s not likely that even years later he’d be providing details of who he was in public lectures. People who have fled death squads usually remain very cautious for the rest of their lives.
In this interview Moncada also goes on to talk about his career. He mentions arriving to work with John Vane at the Royal College of Surgeons in 1971 and how in 1982 Vane received the Nobel Prize for the discovery of prostaglandin. Moncada explains that then Patrick Vallance, who was just finishing his medical studies at St George’s, got in touch with Moncada and asked if he could work as a post-doc at the Wellcome Research Laboratories. During this interview, Moncada explains that he left the Wellcome Research Laboratories when Glaxo brought them because he wanted to continue to be in an environment of scientific discovery rather than purely drug discovery. Thus Moncada left Wellcome and established the Wolfson Institute at UCL.
The one part of his story that Moncada is consistent about is his arrival in London in Feb 1971 after a Professor whom he knew on a fairly casual basis recommended him to John Vane, whom that Professor had worked with seven or eight years previously and that John Vane simply accepted Moncada as part of his team despite knowing nothing about him.
Perhaps them Salvadore can explain why on John Vane’s wiki entry there is a nice photo of him with John Vane which wiki tells us is a photo of them ‘from the Sixties’. We can’t ask John Vane to explain because he’s dead, so it’s down to you Salvadore – and if you want to be arsey about this and claim that wiki has made a mistake, the date of that photo can easily be verified because it is a photo of you both standing in someone’s lab and it will be quite easy to correlate the date of the lab equipment in the photo as well as the age, hair, beard etc of you and Vane.
We have established that Moncada was safely well away from El Salvador when the civil war began and that in 1981 he was not only the representative for the FMLN in Europe, but according to Jon Snow Moncada was also providing information to Snow and ITN about the FMLN. Snow is clear that he hates the El Salvadorean military junta, but he does acknowledge that the FMLN guerrillas are dangerous as well. Whilst Snow was in El Salvador, Alexander Hague under Reagan’s new administration maintained that the FMLN arms were being supplied by the Soviets – Snow’s brief from his bosses at ITN was to infiltrate the FMLN in order to ascertain whether their weapons were from the Soviet Union. Jon Snow maintains that they were not – but I’m interested that not only did he have that remit from his bosses at ITN, but that Moncada was his informant. The fact that Moncada was a useful informant suggests that Moncada – whilst leading the world in pharmacology – still had incredibly close connections with the guerrillas in El Salvador, but I doubt that the FMLN knew that he was providing information to UK journalists. Snow’s book makes it clear that he and his colleagues would have been killed themselves if anyone had realised that they were journalists secretly photographing events in El Salvador.
So in 1981 ITN seemed to be using its journos to assist the US in its foreign policy objectives -by the use of an informant who was a former terrorist who had a very cosy relationship with the Royal College of Surgeons. Would any of the leftovers from Thatcher’s first administration who are still alive like to explain all of this?
Moncada graduated in 1970 and arrived in London in Feb 1971, after leading a guerrilla movement. He hadn’t done much medicine at medical school then. If he had been imprisoned, that must have been after he graduated, so he obviously left for London asap. This was ten years before the civil war broke out, so what was going on in El Salvador at the time?
The PDC, the National Coalition Party, was active in El Salvadorean politics. It was led by Napolean Duarte who had been the Mayor of San Salvador, 1964-70. Duarte was preparing to run for President with the political grouping the UNO (National Opposition Union). In the event, Duarte lost the 1972 Presidential election to the ex-Minister of the Interior, Col Arturo Armando Molina. Notice that surname??? I don’t know anything about Central America, it could be that Molina is their equivalent of Smith, but you never know… The election was widely viewed as being fraudulent, with Molina being declared the winner although Duarte received the majority of votes. Duarte supported the request of a group of army officers to back a revolt to protest the fraud – he was captured, tortured and exiled. Duarte lost a few fingers to his captors and went to Venezuela. He returned to El Salvador in 1979 and was installed as a an acceptable face for a President with the help of Washington. By that time the lethal Roberto D’Aubuisson aka Major Bob had exerted his reign of terror over El Salvador and Duarte admitted that he was powerless in the face of Major Bob and his death squads. Washington wanted Duarte as the official face of the Gov’t, but Major Bob had contacts with US intelligence, with the political right and with the military. He was unstoppable and completely out of hand – it was assumed that it had been him who had given the order to assassinate Archbishop Oscar Romero whilst he was holding mass in his Church in San Salvador in 1980, the event which effectively began the civil war. In 1982 Major Bob became President of the Constituent Assembly. The US then stopped even pretending to oppose Major Bob and backed him. Major Bob ended up as President of El Salvador and his party ARENA spent many years in Gov’t.
What was happening in the US as Moncada escaped El Salvador and was embraced by John Vane and the Royal College of Surgeons? Nixon was in office, the Vietnam War was still underway and the US were busy covertly supporting the opponents of Salvador Allende in Chile – which led to the coup in Sept 1973 during which Allende was murdered and Thatcher’s mate Pinochet installed as leader. In early 1971, Chairman Mao invited a team of American table tennis players to China, which was considered a breakthrough in relations – in July 1971 it was announced that Nixon would visit China the following Feb. Following the thawing of relations with China, there were negotiations for Nixon and his wife to visit Moscow – which they did in May 1972, where they met Leonid Brezhnev. All these negotiations were considered important because they persuaded the Soviets and Chinese to reduce their support for the Viet Cong. A knock on effect was the US scaling down its Space Programme – in July 1972 it was announced that there would be a five year co-operative programme between NASA and the Soviet Space Programme.
As for the UK, when Moncada made his appearance in the Royal College of Surgeons – Ted Heath was in Gov’t, with all the attendant problems…
I have seen how much the Top Doctors and an assortment of politicians milked their knowledge of the North Wales Paedophile Ring and how much havoc that caused and continues to cause decades later. Salvadore Moncada was a terrorist in exile who continued to have involvement in the politics of a dirty, brutal civil war in which no-one knows how many people disappeared and an estimated 75,000 people died. I can only imagine what the Top Doctors got up to with him in their camp. With Moncada’s help that fleet of clapped out, uninspiring, hopeless, polluting old Trabants all dressed themselves up as Ferraris and robbed the UK taxpayer of millions as they established enormous research institutions on the back of sod all but knowledge which enabled them to blackmail people in high places. As for Savadore – he wasn’t simply a lying, cheating social snob who fabricated his research and dripped with contempt for his patients like your common or garden Top Doctor. He was a fucking terrorist. No wonder they all told everyone how brilliant he was.
Salvadore’s terrorist connections and dirt on people in very high places have obviously enabled him to achieve a great deal, but interestingly not the Nobel Prize which everybody thought was a given. The ground had obviously been very carefully prepared – everyone had been told how brilliant Moncada was, how brilliant his associates like Vallance were and nitric oxide was talked up as much as Professor Mark Williams talked up Mindfulness (see post ‘The Biggest Expert Of The Lot’). In 1992 the journal ‘Science’ declared nitric oxide to be ‘molecule of the year’ – what I remember 1992 for is being the year that five witnesses to the North Wales Child Abuse Scandal were killed in an arson attack after they were invited to a party and someone chucked a petrol bomb into the building (see post ‘The Silence Of The Welsh Lambs’) – well Moncada and Vallance were working on nitric oxide and there was that Nobel Prize that was coming their way as everybody had been assured.
The first shock for the Moncada camp was Moncada failing to win the Lasker Award in 1996. There was a lot of wailing and gnashing of teeth after that, but hissy fits were really thrown with a vengeance in 1998 when Moncada was not given the Nobel Prize for physiology and medicine. The award was given for the uncovering of the role of nitric oxide as a biological mediator, but the scientific community was ‘outraged’ when Moncada was not among the three prize winners named. Moncada himself did not protest and this was taken as a sign of what a gentleman he was. The Nobel Prize was instead awarded to three Americans – Robert. F. Furchgott, Luois J. Ignarro and Ferid Murad. It was two of these – Murad and Furchgott – who won the Lasker Award in 1996. When I read the names of the people who had won the Nobel Prize my first thought was that someone had discovered Moncada’s past and had ensured that he wasn’t listed; then it sunk in that it was three Americans who won the prize and I thought oh well, AMERICANS, they’ll have definitely known about Moncada’s time as a terrorist; then I speculated that perhaps fair play had triumphed and that the Nobel Prize might have gone to the most deserving. Then I looked at the CVs of those who had won – they are all very big names in very big powerful US universities and they hold senior positions with very big powerful drug companies. In 1990 Murad was Vice-President for R & D of Abbott Laboratories, Illinois. (Dr David Owen was a Board member, 1990-2011.) In 2012 Abbott were charged with a $500 million fine and a$198.5 million forfeiture for illegal marketing, after unlawfully promoting the anti-psychotic Depakote for uses not approved by the FDA including use in children. It was the second biggest fine in US history for a drug company. Abbott also received a term of five years probation and court supervision. So what I think had actually happened was that the three winners had even bigger mates that Moncada had.
Not winning the Nobel Prize has not held Moncada back. He was made a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1988; a Foreign Member of the National Academy of Sciences of the USA in 1994; a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians in 1994; an Honorary Fellow of UCL in 1999. He has authored over 500 papers and in the 1990s he was the most cited biomedical scientist in Britain and the second most cited biomedical scientist in the world – and he probably still is.
Moncada also has an interest in medical education and the development of science and technology in Latin America. He is a Consultant for the Pan-American Health Organisation (PAHO) – a registered office of WHO – and he founded Honduras Global, an international network of experts supporting the development of Honduras. Moncada also tell interviewers that he enjoys travelling and spends time with his family.
Moncada does have a family, but he has long since split with the wife whom he used to have to meet in Guatemala because he had been banned from El Salvadore where his wife and daughter lived. Moncada is now married to Princess Marie-Esmeralda of Belgium, daughter of King Leopold III and aunt of King Philippe! She is a journo, documentary maker, environmental activist and a wimmins and indigenous people’s rights campaigner. In 1989 she supported the campaign to protect the Amazonian forest with dear old Sting. Who then gave everybody a good laugh by advertising luxury cars – his wife Trudie Styler supplied even more entertainment by having ding dongs with her servants. Then there were those boasts about tantric sex…Princess Marie-Esmerelda also writes books about her ancestors, but says she prefers to concentrate on exploring their personalities than on their biographies. Well that’s one way of coping with forebears who ran the Belgian Congo – Marie-Esmeralda has obviously seen those photos of the Congolese children with hands missing after they were chopped off because they were not working fast enough.
Marie-Esmerelda is Patron of the Princess Lillian Foundation, established in 1958 by her late mother. Orginally the charity sent children in need of complex heart surgery abroad for treatment, but in the 70s the Foundation focussed on organising high level scientific meetings. I wonder how the Princess and the former armed revolutionary met then?? Since the death of Princess Lillian, the Foundation has created a visiting Professorship. In 2008 Marie-Esmeralda spoke at a conference on mental health and well-being at the European Community in Brussels. She is the Honorary President of Care Belgium and was until very recently the Honorary President of Delphus, an association offering autistic children assisted therapy with dolphins.
What I’m wondering is who is doing the research and writing those papers because it cannot be Salvadore.
After leading the Wolfson Institute at UCL that Moncada established for twelve years, he upped sticks and went to Manchester. In Nov 2013 it was announced that Moncada would be the Professor of Translational Medicine and Strategic Advisor at the new Centre for Cellular Metabolism in the University’s Institute of Human Development. It was stated that Moncada’s new post was with the University of Manchester and the Manchester Academic Health Sciences Centre, a partnership between academics and six NHS Trusts in Greater Manchester. (I note that one of the Trusts listed is a mental health Trust known for eliminating its patients.) Salvadore was quoted as saying that he would be working with Professor Ian Jacobs with whom he had ‘collaborated enjoyably and successfully in the past’ and that he was delighted to be working with Nancy Rothwell, who was now Vice-Chancellor of Manchester.
Nancy’s been a fan of Salvadore for a while. Before he got within sniffing distance of Manchester, she’d told a journo that ‘he is thought of as very charismatic. I think that he is delightful’. Well you are not someone that he has gunned down or robbed on the road to fund his guerrilla movement are you Nancy. Instead you’re hoping that he’s going to be bringing billions into your institution which George Osborne and Andy Burnham have pinpointed as being a key player in the Northern Powerhouse.
Professor Ian Jacobs didn’t hang around with Moncada for long despite their enjoyable and successful collaboration – Jacobs was appointed the President and Vice-Chancellor of the University of New South Wales in Feb 2015. Ian Jacobs could tell a few tales – he’s rubbed shoulders with a few who have starred on this blog. He is a gynaecological oncologist who worked at the Royal London Hospital when Wendy Savage and her boss took lumps out of each other (see post ‘Every Sperm Is Sacred – Particularly In Scotland’), he has worked for the Cancer Research Campaign who were happy to fund research that was known to be highly questionable by everyone else funded by the CRC (see post ‘A Cause Close To Our Hearts’), he worked at Addenbrookes Hospital, an institution dominated by Mary Archer and Trumpers (see post ’95 Glorious Years!’) and of course he’s passed through Barts on his travels, which was how he probably got to know Moncada – John Vane founded the William Harvey Research Institute at Barts. Jacobs’ potential could be seen as far back as 1985 – when he began one of the largest trials for ovarian cancer screening in the UK. I suspect that was something to do with Dr Vicky Clement-Jones and BACUP. Which was going to revolutionise ovarian cancer treatment (see post ‘The Cradle of Filth’). The outcomes in the UK for ovarian cancer are still very poor.
In April 2014 Moncada was appointed Director of the Institute of Cancer Sciences at the University of Manchester. Manchester University explained that they were due to open a £28.5 million Manchester Cancer Research Centre and that the University has ‘an outstanding history of research and innovation’. Presumably that includes the research done at the University of Manchester by the paedophiles’ friend Dr Tony Francis (Dr X) when he worked there immediately prior to facilitating the paedophile gang in north Wales whilst using his contacts to protect him (see post ‘Ian Brockington’s Mischief’). So who coughed up the £28.5 million for Salvadore to play with?
As for Patrick Vallance, the colleague of those who facilitated a paedophile gang and fabricated research at St George’s – Patrick is leaving his post as Head of R & D at GSK and from Spring 2018 he will be Chief Scientific Advisor to the Gov’t of the UK. Patrick’s new post was announced earlier this month by the Cabinet Secretary Sir Jeremy Heywood. Who will, I am sure, know who Salvadore Moncada really is – the UK has something called the security services. Sir Jeremy will also know about the activities of Patrick’s colleagues at St George’s, via this blog if from nowhere else.
Isn’t it great to know that the British Gov’t consider a bloke who is a long-standing friend of a former terrorist and a former close colleague of numerous people who fabricated research and facilitated serious crime suitable to occupy what is probably the most important Gov’t advisory position?