Ed Pilkington at The Guardian:
The leader of the most prominent group in the US peddling potentially lethal industrial bleach as a “miracle cure” for coronavirus wrote to Donald Trump at the White House this week.
In his letter, Mark Grenon told Trump that chlorine dioxide – a powerful bleach used in industrial processes such as textile manufacturing that can have fatal side-effects when drunk – is “a wonderful detox that can kill 99% of the pathogens in the body”. He added that it “can rid the body of Covid-19”.
A few days after Grenon dispatched his letter, Trump went on national TV at his daily coronavirus briefing at the White House on Thursday and promoted the idea that disinfectant could be used as a treatment for the virus. To the astonishment of medical experts, the US president said that disinfectant “knocks it out in a minute. One minute!”
He went on to say: “Is there a way we can do something, by an injection inside or almost a cleaning? Because you see it gets in the lungs and it does a tremendous number on the lungs, so it’d be interesting to check that.”
Trump did not specify where the idea of using disinfectant as a possible remedy for Covid-19 came from, and the source for his notion remains obscure. But the Guardian has learned that peddlers of chlorine dioxide – industrial bleach – have been making direct approaches to the White House in recent days.
Grenon styles himself as “archbishop” of Genesis II – a Florida-based outfit that claims to be a church but which in fact is the largest producer and distributor of chlorine dioxide bleach as a “miracle cure” in the US. He brands the chemical as MMS, “miracle mineral solution”, and claims fraudulently that it can cure 99% of all illnesses including cancer, malaria, HIV/Aids as well as autism.
Since the start of the pandemic, Genesis II has been marketing MMS as a cure to coronavirus. It advises users, including children, to mix three to six drops of bleach in water and drink it.
In his weekly televised radio show, posted online on Sunday, Grenon read out the letter he wrote to Trump. He said it began: “Dear Mr President, I am praying you read this letter and intervene.”Presidential words have consequences. Philip Obaji, Jr. at The Daily Beast:
Just hours after U.S. President Donald Trump suggested research into whether coronavirus might be treated by injecting disinfectant into the body, viral messaging about drinking such liquids or taking them intravenously began to spread across Nigeria on WhatsApp.
One typical message seen by The Daily Beast claims falsely that the U.S. government has “approved the use of disinfectants with high alcohol content and anti-microbial properties to treat patients with coronavirus.” Another WhatsApp message broadcast far and wide in this most populous African nation says disinfectants “work instantly” and Trump "has given the go ahead" for them to be used in COVID-19 treatment.