Details have emerged which claim that a shady paramilitary group from the Apartheid era in South Africa plotted to infect the black population with AIDS. A former member of the South African Institute of Maritime Research (SAIMR) claimed that this plot was birthed by the eccentric Keith Maxwell, who was leader of SAIMR.
Alexander Jones, the former intelligence officer of SAIMR,said that the group "spread the virus" at the wishes of Keith Maxwell, who believed in a population that did not have black people. It has been claimed that Maxwell strongly desired a white majority country where "the excesses of the 1960s, 70s and 80s have no place in the post-Aids world."
The details of the plot have come to light through the documentary Cold Case Hammarskjöld. Jones spoke to the makers of the documentary saying that Maxwell portrayed himself as a doctor treating black South Africans. Maxwell had few, if any, medical qualifications.
"What easier way to get a guinea pig than [when] you live in an apartheid system?” Jones told the film, which premieres this weekend at the Sundance Film Festival. “Black people have got no rights, they need medical treatment. There’s a white ‘philanthropist’ coming in and saying, ‘You know, I’ll open up these clinics and I’ll treat you.’ And meantime [he is] actually the wolf in sheep’s clothing."
Digging into the allegations, the makers of the documentary found a signpost that advertised the services of a "Doctor Maxwell." They made inquiries on this from the locals, who attested about a man who had a virtual monopoly on the area’s healthcare, despite offering strange treatments. This was in Putfontein, near Johannesburg.
From the account made by one local shopkeeper who said that the doctor gave "false injections" it is clear that if such a plan had always been in place and was being executed, then this was the most depraved thing any person can do to another.
The services were not only restricted to South Africa, according to Jones, as the virus was also being spread in Mozambique through medical conditions.
According to The Independent, "SAIMR is long thought to have had covert ties to Apartheid South Africa’s armed forces."
"It has also been accused of working with British intelligence and the American CIA to assassinate UN Secretary General Dag Hammarskjöld.
The Swedish-born secretary general, a supporter of decolonisation, died in mysterious circumstances when his plane exploded just before landing in Zambia in 1961, as he tried to broker a peace between the newly independent Congo and the breakaway province of Katanga."
The description of the SAIMR leader, Keith Maxwell, points to a white conservative who was choking on his own absurd convictions as regards race relations in South Africa, a man who had a warped and uninformed view of the world he lived in.
Maxwell was an eccentric who loved dressing like an 18th century admiral,and gave himself the rank of "commodore."
It has also been found out that Maxwell took great delight in the thought of AIDS decimating the black population in South Africa. The documentary makers were able to find writings that revealed this.
New documents were discovered and in one of them Maxwell wrote, "[South Africa] may well have one man, one vote with a white majority by the year 2000. Religion in its conservative, traditional form will return. Abortion on demand, abuse of drugs, and the other excesses of the 1960s, 70s and 80s will have no place in the post-Aids world."
However others say that his actions were actuated by a genuine motivation to "discover a cure for HIV/AIDS" and that he was not genocidal.
Header image credit: The Independent