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Will Monkeypox Be The Next P(L)andemic?

Monkeypox is not a new disease. It is related to both chickenpox and smallpox and is generally of intermediate severity between the two.

It was identified in Africa in the 70’s and although it was first discovered in monkeys it is more commonly carried by rodents. It is endemic to Nigeria and occasional small outbreaks have occurred in other countries after travel to Africa, typically involving no more than a handful of people. In May 2003 73 cases were traced to Gambian pouched rats imported from Ghana by a Texas exotic animal distributor.

Human transmission usually requires close bodily contact. The time from exposure to onset of symptoms is on average 12 days. The infected may become contagious slightly before visible symptoms, but asymptomatic transmission is not a significant concern.

All things being equal there is no obvious reason why this rather obscure disease should suddenly alter it’s behaviour and become a global problem or a pandemic.

The ‘mainstream’ media have suggested that the current global outbreak may have started with a Pride festival becoming a ‘superspreader’ event. However, given that there is such a long lead time between infection and an infected person becoming infectious in turn, this seems rather improbable.

Perhaps all things are not equal. The monkeypox strain behind this current outbreak has around 50 nucleotide mutations from previously analysed strains, surprising some experts. If these mutations have increased monkeypox’s ability to spread via respiratory droplets then that could potentially change the disease’s behaviour profile and allow larger and more generalised outbreaks.

Although the level of mutations in this strain has caught some scientists by surprise, there are indications that other authorities may have had foreknowledge of this outbreak.

  1. One year ago an international biosecurity conference in Munich held a simulation of a “global pandemic involving an unusual strain of Monkeypox” beginning in May 2022.
  1. The only current FDA-approved vaccine for the prevention of monkeypox disease was approved in 2019.
  1. Earlier this year, the Wuhan Institute of Virology assembled a monkeypox virus genome, allowing the virus to be identified through PCR tests, using a method researchers flagged for potentially creating a “contagious pathogen”.
  1. In November 2021 Bill Gates warned of the possibility of smallpox terror attacks.
  1. Anthony Fauci’s National Institutes of Health agency was funding research to identify treatments for monkeypox shortly before the virus began spreading in a global outbreak.

I admit that these events are all ‘circumstantial’ and are not a ‘smoking gun’ which PROVE beyond all doubt that the current outbreak was engineered or planned. Yet they are rather suggestive in that direction.

All things being equal, this outbreak SHOULD be of limited public significance. If it becomes a significant issue then questions about its origins need to be asked.