As I was winding up the final draft of AIDS INC., I spoke, off the record, with a well-known and well-respected mainstream virologist at a large US university. I expressed my conclusions about HIV.
He spoke, first, about the difficulties in making an absolute decision about a virus as the cause of a disease.
I brought the conversation back to HIV.
He paused. Then he repeated that he couldn’t go on the record. I asked him why.
He said HIV was a subject fraught with problems. Politics were involved.
He said he and his colleagues were taking a pass on getting into a dispute about the virus. They were aware that the science was shaky. They just didn’t want to go near it. They might enter into other arguments about other kinds of research, but as far as they were concerned, HIV was off-limits.
His obvious implication was: careers were on the line.