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The World's Most Unsung Hero: Hans Ruesch

Hans Ruesch, the father of the modern anti-vivisection (anti animal experimentation) movement died on Monday, September 3rd, 2007 at age 94. If we measure a persons greatness by the extent to which they expose and seek to eliminate suffering and are prepared to dedicate themselves to this end despite persecution, then Hans Ruesch was the most important person in the world today.

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A book called Ideas that Changed the World list him along with Einstein and Gandhi as inclusions from the 20th century (all vegetarians/vegans). The Guiness Book of  Records listed him as the most litigated person in the world. These two facts speak volumes about him and the world we live in today.
A genuine anti-vivisectionist he forced a referendum on the elimination of vivisection in Switzerland, the country which had and still may have the highest number of animal experiments per capita due to pharmaceutical companies. He was also instrumental in helping Italian parliament to vote for the elimination of vivisection and brought this about in South Tirol. No-one has ever come closer to exposing and eliminating this, the most despicable crime ever committed. His ideas should have changed the world and would have if his books and words were not so successfully suppressed. If we do not hear them then there is little hope. Please buy his books, read them and for the sake of laboratory animals, spread the truth far and wide. Go to www.dlrm.org and other sites.

In the footsteps of Hans Ruesch, other scientific/human health anti vivisectionists have trod a similar path, persecuted and opposed, but never to the extent that he was. These include Dr Vernon Coleman, Dr Andrew Knight, the doctors of the Medical Research Modernization Committee, The Safer Medicines Campaign, the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, The Campaign Against Fraudulent Medical Research, Dr Moniem A FadaliDr Ray Greek, Professor Pietro Croce Bette Overell. Please look into to these sites.
What a life Hans had! Grand Prix winner, best selling novelist (selling millions of books, some made into Hollywood films) and most importantly by far, the most successful anti-vivisectionist of all time.

Here is something I wrote in 2004: In June last year I had the honour of meeting a man who is truly the founder of scientific anti-vivisectionism and the most effective anti-vivisectionist in the world, Hans Ruesch. I admit that I was unaware that he was still alive until shortly before then. I was travelling in Europe and so decided that I would go through Lugano in Switzerland for the purposes of meeting the man who is a hero to me and would be to anyone who knows the truth about vivisection and his tireless efforts to expose and stop it. When I arrived at his address I found that he lived in a flat, his significant wealth taken by having to defend constant foundless litigation. I did not know which was his and was lucky that just then a man walked up and said in English, "I'm here to see Mr Ruesch, who are you here to see?" I met an 89 year old man, very modest and not requiring my compliments and still writing an entire book in four languages without help despite ill health and constant persecution which caused him to leave his country for years.

Hans was born in 1913 as a Swiss citizen to a Swiss couple who was living in Naples, Italy, he grew up multilingual, studying first in Italy and then in German speaking and partly in francophone Switzerland - Zurich and Geneva. As a very young man he embarked in a car racing career which took him all over Europe and Africa. He established two world records at nineteen and went on to win the British Grand Prix of the time.

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But he felt that literature was his calling, and in 1938 he sailed to the USA, where he was one of the few European writers to succeed in publishing short stories and articles in America's leading magazines and newspapers of the time. In 1950 Harper Brothers published his first American novel, set among the Eskimos: Top of the World, which had by 1989 sold over 3 million copies world wide and was also filmed, starring Anthony Quinn. Kirk Douglas starred in another film taken from one of Ruesch's novels, The Racer.

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Having also studied medicine, he worked in the 1950s as a medical editor. It was in this capacity that he gradually discovered the fraud inherent to the industrialized, money spinning, disease producing vivisectionist practice. In 1973 when his latest novel, Back to the Top of the World was released, Ruesch announced that he was never going to write fiction again so long as the fraud of vivisection was not generally exposed, and from then on he dedicated all his efforts to this end.
 
His first book about the cruelty and counterproductivity of the practice, Slaughter of the Innocent, first appeared in Italy's publishing empire of Rizzoli in 1976 and in New York (Bantam) in 1978. Naked Empress (1982) exposed the dire consequences that medicine and humanity have derived from an erroneous method of "research", and 1000 Doctors (and many more) Against Vivisection shows that a growing number of people share his views. "Vivisection based medicine is in fact being increasingly recognised as the principal cause of disease today," Bette Overell, former leader of the New Zealand Anti-Vivisection Society said in her excellent book "Animal Research Takes Lives...Humans and Animals Both Suffer", 1993, (available online)
 
Shocked by what he discovered, in 1974 Ruesch founded his own Center for Scientific Information on Vivisection (CIVIS), a publishing house dedicated exclusively to the fight against vivisection, from which he despatches regular foundation reports in many languages. In 1979 Ruesch's Slaughter of the Innocent was the breakthrough which altered the whole concept and course of the 'anti-vivisection movement'. Revealing that vivisection is not merely a question of cruelty to animals, but also the vital international alibi which paves the way, through fraud and conspiracy, to solid gold profits, in Great Britain the book lasted a few short weeks before being banned from the shelves. Abandoning his lucrative literary career Ruesch pledged to devote the remainder of his life to this cause. He has been highly successful, not only in becoming the recognised father of the new abolitionist movement, but for his many subsequent powerful works on the subject.

In 1985 Ruesch was a key figure in the Swiss Referendum Against Vivisection, when on December 18 of that year a third of the Swiss population voted in favour of abolition. In October 1987 he helped launch the first ever International League of Doctors Against Vivisection of which he was made Honourary President. The world's most sought after exponent of abolition, Ruesch undertakes a gruelling lecture circuit, debates with adversaries at symposia, addresses internatioinal congresses and is a well known figure on European and American radio and television. He is the draw card which leads marches and addresses rallies, always dispensing the facts as they are. Many organisations worldwide have been formed to support Hans Ruesch, whose name, and rightly so, since we and future generations are in his debt, is already carved in history. Hans Ruesch, the father of the modern anti-vivisection movement died on Monday, September 3rd, 2007 at age 94.
 
If you have never heard of him I am not surprised for his books and work have been kept out of the public eye very effectively since his first anti-vivisection book Slaughter of the Innocent was published in 1978. This book exposed vivisection for what it is, a massive hidden fraud which not only kills hundreds of millions of animals a year but is also the largest cause of human illness and death, providing legal protection to industries whose products harm humans and pollute the planet and then consistently failing to cure human disease. This fact which has been very well hidden from almost all of us. Why is it so well hidden? Primarily because extremely powerful industries rely on fraudulent animal "tests" to pass their products as "safe" so as to avoid litigation for the damage which they cause constantly, the careers of many "academics" rely on vivisection as an alibi for publishing papers and the "medical research" business relies on it for constant "breakthroughs" without ever curing a disease and thereby ensuring constant business. The media relies on these for advertising income and often outright ownership and the government and universities receive "donations" from them so influencing the education and legal systems. They also infiltrate groups who claim to be opposed to vivisection, create fraudulent anti-vivisection groups and promote philosophies which do not present the genuine anti vivisection argument. 

So we have some very powerful enemies. We can defeat them by expressing the truth about vivisection. To do this firstly we must inform ourselves and the works of Hans Ruesch are essential reading for anyone who is opposed to what Mahatma Gandhi called "the blackest of all of the black crimes ever committed against God and his fair creation." Do not let the vivisectors succeed in stopping the truth from being heard as they have done by stopping his books. These books are more empowering than disturbing. If you have ever had no answer when someone has said "What would you rather kill, a baby or a rat?" then you must read these books before they are completely suppressed. 
 
"Conclusions drawn from animal research, when applied to humans are likely to delay progress, mislead and do harm to the patient. Vivisection, or animal experimentation, should be abolished." Dr Moniem A Fadali. For over a thousand more quotes against vivisection by eminent doctors and scientists see "1000 Doctors (and many more) Against Vivisection" by Hans Ruesch. Here's Part 1, Part 2, Part 3 & Part 4.
 
I had the good fortune to receive a reply after writing to him, which is unusual for such a busy man. Here is the response Mr. Ruesch wrote to me in 2002:
Milan, 10 December, 2002
Dear Mr Douglas Leith,
Your letter of Oct 14th reached me only a few days ago because I've had to leave my Swiss address about 3 years ago because of constant persecution by the courts. I regret not having heard from you earlier, otherwise you would be on my mailing list and you would have received all my Foundation Reports of which I am enclosing the last one. I don't know if I'll ever find the time and the strength to do still another report in English, as I am also writing and publishing Reports in my other three languages and I am very much at the end of my rainbow. 
Your letter moved me particularly although I receive many of the kind. I'll soon be turning 90 and feel very much at the end of my strength. I know there are a great many people who feel as we do.
Yours, Hans Ruesch
 
If anyone's life could be described as reaching the end of his rainbow, then his could.
 
Information on Hans Ruesch paraphrased from the book 1000 Doctors (and many more) Against Vivisection edited by Hans Ruesch. Here's Part 1, Part 2, Part 3 & Part 4. See the The Hans Ruesch Foundation for a Medicine Without Vivisection website for more information.

Doug 
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it has been involved in animal issues for 22 years since seeing a film of monkeys in brain research in 1988. Animal experimentation has been the area which concerns Douglas the most but he has been involved in all types of animal issues over that time. Douglas will be a regular contributor to Viva la Vegan! and hopes that he can help people to use the most effective anti-vivisection arguments and action. Contact Douglas This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

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