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The Mapping Project

Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH)

Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) is one of the most well-known and well-funded hospitals in the world. MGH maintains relationships and partnerships with numerous corporations (including big pharmaceutical companies such as Novartis and computing corporations such as IBM) as well as close partnerships with the US military and Pentagon.

Links to militarism and US national security state

According to government spending records, MGH has received over $100 million in funding from US Department of Defense (source: USASpending.gov), and maintains numerous links to the Pentagon.

MGH has hosted a series of "CEO Firesides" that feature both corporate executives (from companies such as Novartis) and representatives of the US national security state. One MGH Fireside Chat featured General Keith Alexander, former head of the NSA, along with Biogen CEO Michel Vounatsos and Head of Research and Development at Bayer Pharma Joerg Moeller. In MGH's advertisement for this panel, Alexander was described as "Former head of NSA, retired four star Army General and global security strategist." Like other high-ups in the US national security state, Alexander used his background to become an entrepreneur and "security consultant" to corporate America. Alexander was appointed to Amazon's Board of Directors after the company had trouble securing Pentagon contracts.

MGH's vaccine development and pandemic preparedness research centers around its desire to receive funding from the Pentagon. For decades, the Pentagon and US military have been working to weaponize biology and develop biological weapons, investing in not only in the cultivation of dangerous biological agents (viruses, microbes, etc.) but also medicine and vaccines against infectious disease. MGH's Vaccine & Immunotherapy Center (VIC) has received some of these investments from the Pentagon and military through DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency), the Pentagon's research agency. Since at least 2012, DARPA has been funding and working with MGH VIC's Mark Poznansky to develop a response to potential pandemics through the "VaxCelerate" consortium (which involves other academics, including well-known biochemist David Baker from the University of Washington, along with a slew of representatives of biotech companies). According to DARPA's press release, VaxCelerate "is one of a few recently approved DARPA contracts in the United States. The group’s goal is to bring industry and academia leaders together to accelerate vaccine and immunotherapy development. The initial proof of principle work focuses on HIV-1 as its target. However, the consortium could equally apply its intellectual and technical advantage to addressing any other pathogen."

Such alliances mean that the response to and ways of thinking about pandemics will be militarized and guided by the interests of the US national security state - namely US government's objective of maintaining its hegemonic control over global affairs. This militarized approach became apparent during the Covid pandemic, when MGH released press releases explaining how its DARPA-funded initiatives, led by Mark Poznansky, provide the correct response to the pandemic. Poznansky praised the US Department of Defense in the press release: "Poznansky credits the United States Department of Defense—and DARPA in particular—for their forward-thinking view on pandemic preparedness. 'This is a collaboration of the U.S. government, philanthropy and industry,' he says. “We would never have been able to do it without the DOD initiating this project, philanthropy bridging and supporting advances in the overall platform, and industry funding and guiding its development as a potentially important vaccine product.'"

Racist origins and racist display of African bodies

The founders of Harvard Medical School and MGH included racist ideologue John Warren, who argued for relocating Harvard's medical in Boston because this would provide easy access to cadavers of poor Black and white people, to be used for enhancing the school's reputation in anatomy and surgery. The abuse and disrespect for Black bodies continues at MGH today: at MGH's "Ether Dome," the famous hall where surgeries and dissections were being performed to audiences of medical students (and where researchers give talks nowadays), one can find an Egyptian mummy on display - a grotesque violation of bodies of ancestors that's meant to make the institute look sophisticated and "worldly." These remains continue to be violated, as MGH performs CT scans and X-rays on the mummy

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