SWEDHR Is An Independent Organization. Article in the Journal of the Swedish Medical Association

SWEDHR article published in ‘Läkartidningen’, Journal of the Swedish Medical Association, 9 June 2017 [English translation of submitted version. The Swedish version edited by Läkartidningen is found here].

SWEDHR is absolutely independent

Sweden’s main newspaper Dagens Nyheter [DN] wrote on April 22, 2017, [1] that a report [2] from SWEDHR (Swedish Professors and Doctors for Human Rights) on the “White Helmets” was quoted in the UN Security Council on April 12, and also, later by Russia’s representatives in OPCW.

The newspaper also pointed out that the SWEDHR chairman had been interviewed by Russian television and given alternative explanations to the alleged chemical attack in Syria April 4. All which was followed by articles in other major media and in the Swedish medical journal Läkartidningen (LT) with accompanying comments. [3, 4] However the DN article was inaccurate in important respects, DN refused to give SWEDHR the right to a clarification. [5]

There were not the facts in our analysis that it was questioned [in neither DN nor in the LT article], but instead that we spoke to the Russian media. We regard this objection as infringing the freedom of expression principle. [6] Neither it was mentioned that interviews with SWEDHR were also conducted in other international media, including in the UK, Denmark and Italy, and that our report has been reproduced in several countries.

Another criticism was that important assessments would have been made outside the field of our expertise, which we contest. Several Italian media published the interview “I dubbi dell ‘epidemiologo sul raid col gas: i conti non tornano” [7], which discusses the expected death / injured ratio in high toxicity gas attacks, not seen in data on the gas incident 4/4. Possible political explanations for the 4-April attack are described in The Indicter Magazine. [8]

 

Finally, we find that there are several organizations in which Swedish doctors present their political views on social topics (‘physicians against nuclear weapons’, ‘physicians for the environment’, etc.). Thus, SWEDHR should not be considered differently in this context. And those involved in medical ethical issues should instead agree with us that the use of dead children for propaganda purposes [2] is unacceptable.

We give us the right to express our opinions on “war crimes, human rights abuses, and state assaults to privacy and civil liberties” based on the UN Charter and the Helsinki Declaration. [9] SWEDHR is absolutely independent.

Marcello Ferrada de Noli, Professor Emeritus, med dr. President
Anders Romelsjö, Professor Emeritus, med dr. Vice Chairman
Lena Oske, specialist in general medicine. Board representative
Swedish Professors and Doctors for Human Rights, SWEDHR
Email: chair@swedhr.org

References

[1] DN, “Svenska läkare i propagandabråkom gasattacker”, April 22, 2017.

[2] Marcello Ferrada de Noli, article series 1) “White Helmets Video: Swedish Doctors for Human Rights Denounce Medical Malpractice and ‘Misuse’ of Children for Propaganda Aims.” 2) “White Helmets Movie: Updated Evidence From Swedish Doctors Confirm Fake ‘Lifesaving’ and Malpractices on Children.” The Indicter Magazine, March 2017 issue.

[3] Joakim Andersson, ”Okänd svensk läkargrupp ifrågasätter gasattack i Syrien”. Läkartidningen, 2017; 114: EMRA / Lakartidningen.se 2017-04-24

[4] Stefan Johansson, “Som läkare är man inte alltid läkare”. Läkartidningen. 2017; 114: EPCI / Lakartidningen.se 2017-05-16.

[5] Anders Romelsjö, ”Läkare arbetar mot orättvisor – SWEDHR är ett exempel”.. Comment in Lakartidningen.se 2017-05-16. See Ref [4].

[6] Marcello Ferrada de Noli, Anders Romelsjö, Lena Öske, “The Fake News attack by Dagens Nyheter on Swedish Doctors for Human Rights”. The Indicter Magazine, Vol. 3, N ° 17, April 2017 issue.

[7] Lorenzo Bianchi, [“Epidemiologist’s doubt about gas attack: the figures do not match”] “I dubbi dell’ epidemiologo sul raid col gas: i conti non tornano”. QN, Il Giorno, il Resto del Carlino, La Nazione. Roma, 14 Maggio 2017.

[8] “UOSSM admits: Doctor reporting alleged aerial Khan Sheikhoun attack “was no expert to determine that”. The Indicter Magazine, Vol 3, N ° 17, April 2017 issue.

[9] SWEDHR Foundation, published February 2015.

*English translation of submitted version. The Swedish version edited by Läkartidningen is found here].

Comment by Prof Marcello Ferrada de Noli,  SWEDHR chair

“Läkartidningen” published our article after replacing/introducing new texts. We finally accepted the changes but also submitted important observations. However, not all of our standpoints were considered by LT in the final publication.

One of the specific  post-remarks to the editor of Läkartidnjngen was that our rebuttal referred in the main to the LT article they published 24 April 2017 (signed by Joakim Andersson. See Reference 3, above), and not  to one opinion-article authored by Steffan Johansson. The reason being that I do not consider neither his attacks in-persona against us on Twitter, nor his deceitful argumentation in his attacks to our organization, up to a proper level for a debate with SWEDHR.

Yet, LT published our article as “rebuttal to Steffan Johansson”. Furthermore, LT published simultaneously a “final rebuttal” signed by Johansson, referring  on an alleged debate of his with SWEDHR…

The above results in a two-fold inaccuracy. Partly, in this “final rebuttal” signed by Johansson he refers to issues I have never debated with him,  such as on his opinions on freedom of speech (In logic science, this fallacious argumentation is called “Straw-man fallacy”).

Secondly, the only reference about Johansson’s  article contained in our submitted piece to LT was deleted by the editor. Namely, Johansson’s contention on that my statements on the core-issues in the interviews (or those of our SWEDHR colleagues in the analysis of the White Helmets video) were done outside our area of expertise.

Finally, we are grateful to LT, and particularly Editor Ewa Knutsson, for this opportunity to set some issues straight about our organization SWEDHR.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *