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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars conspiracies proven
A well-researched book for the lay person, this book shows that knowledge of the link between environmental toxins and cancer has existed for over 200 years; how industry and government buried information or failed to act to prevent deaths from cancer; and that whistleblowers and those attempting to warn the public have been systematically squashed.

Facts are...
Published on 23 Nov. 2008 by D&D

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Very interesting, but with some minor "annoyances"
I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. There is a lot of interesting information to be found about unhealthy connections between research on cancer and the industry in the previous century. There are however two drawbacks here that prevent me from giving 4 or 5 stars.
My main issues are with the author's error to look at many of the described issues with hindsight...
Published on 30 Sept. 2010 by F. de Vocht


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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars conspiracies proven, 23 Nov. 2008
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D&D - See all my reviews
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A well-researched book for the lay person, this book shows that knowledge of the link between environmental toxins and cancer has existed for over 200 years; how industry and government buried information or failed to act to prevent deaths from cancer; and that whistleblowers and those attempting to warn the public have been systematically squashed.

Facts are laid out about businesses in the US (and of course all over the world) which have systematically and consistently abused the health of employees, customers and people living near their polluting factories. Environmental causes are either overlooked or kept out of sight altogether, often by those with major economic interests in seeing this happen.

What is even more frightening is that all this is still occurring, and getting worse, for example with the increasingly common use of CT scans, each of which can be equivalent to 400 X-rays. Of the 100,000 chemicals commonly used in commerce, most have not been studied as to their ability to affect our health. We have no public record of toxicity of three out of every four of the top 3,000 chemicals in use today. It can take three weeks to approve a new chemical for use and thirty years to remove an old one.

Worse, Davis documents the cancer industry's wilfull blindness to environmental factors - preferring, instead, the development of expensive and highly profitable treatments. The decades-long "War on Cancer" has always meant research on treatment (the sales of which add to profits), not the causes (removal of which would create losses). As Davis states: the entire project has always been focused on devising ways to find, treat and cure the disease, rather than coming up with actions to keep the two hundred different types of illnesses that comprise cancer from occurring. Davis names names and points fingers at many leading figures in the war on cancer who have profited both from producing cancer-causing chemicals and from producing anti-cancer drugs - good reasons for the steady increase in both the incidence of cancer and its treatment options (unfortunately "treatment" does not mean "cure" - the "increased" success rate of treatments is due to the strategy of counting five years of survival as a "success"!).

Here are just a few more of the almost unending list of books on the seamy underbelly of the medical mafia:

Fear of the Invisible
Selling Sickness
Dirty Medicine
Racketeering In Medicine
Heart Frauds
Malignant Medical Myths
The Cholesterol Myth (the Kendrick one)
How to Protect Your Heart from Your Doctor
The Medical Mafia (also by a medic, similar theme this book and passionately but badly written)
The Truth About Vaccines
Cancer: Why We're Still Dying to Know the Truth
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars True To Its Title, 31 Dec. 2007
By 
David Wick (Minnesota, USA) - See all my reviews
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The Secret History of the War on Cancer gets five stars for doing what it set out to do - provide a history of our efforts, or non-efforts, in the war on cancer. One reviewer said the book left a void. This void has already been filled with books such as Avoiding Cancer One Day At A Time: Practical Advice For Preventing Cancer that provide extensive references and tips on what we need to do to lower our risk. Devra Davis filled the enormous void that screamed "why have we not heard about these studies showing the link between the environment and cancer?" The answers will prompt those of us that are health conscious to take a fresh look at the world around us and take charge of our own lives.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Very interesting, but with some minor "annoyances", 30 Sept. 2010
By 
F. de Vocht "Frank" (UK) - See all my reviews
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I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. There is a lot of interesting information to be found about unhealthy connections between research on cancer and the industry in the previous century. There are however two drawbacks here that prevent me from giving 4 or 5 stars.
My main issues are with the author's error to look at many of the described issues with hindsight. As a result, she claims that "we" would have saved many lives had we only listened to individual X or took notice of case report Y decades ago since it has turned out that chemical Z is a carcinogen. Although true in hindsight this is only the case because the examples have been cherry-picked, while many 'false positive' examples have been ignored in this book.
Secondly, in my opinion this book could have been written in about half the number of pages if the author had not beefed it up by combining her main, and important, message with an autobiography.
I noticed another review here that mentioned that it is old and out-of-date material, which is somewhat suprising given that the book's title actually includes the word "history"....
Nonetheless, in summary it is well worth the read.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars why we get disgruntled as we get older, 21 Jan. 2011
If you have lost members of your family to cancer and still give money to the big cancer charities you may be curious how well we are getting on with winning the war on cancer-world war 2 only took 5years,man on the moon in under ten years,cancer-interrminable,a bit like Iraq/Afghanistan.
Reading this book may well lead to total disillusionment with the cancer establishment-if you cannot be treated profitably their way your death is quite acceptable-most of the answers to cancer have been discovered amazingly but mainstream profits,power,reputations are far to important to recognise and introduce the changes needed in treatment modalities,attitudes to natural alternatives,withdrawal of serious carcinogens.Read it,formulate your own survival plan before getting cancer(1 out of 3 of us is likely to)and despair of those in power doing the right thing which is after all the reason we grant them power each democratically held election.A hell of a task to change the system-anyone up for it?Makes me wish 1 was 40 years younger.........
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2 of 10 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Anecdotal and dated; nothing to learn here..., 22 Mar. 2010
By 
Patrick Corley (Dublin, Ireland) - See all my reviews
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The Secret History of the War on Cancer is an inflated account of certain anecdotal information, which is out of date and largely irrelevant. It's poorly written and tired and given the emotive title, an in appropriate treatment of the information. The information is repetitive and could be condensed into a wee booklet. The motives for writing such a text are unclear. There is no important information in this book.
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The Secret History of the War on Cancer by Devra Davis (MP3 CD - Dec. 2009)
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