October 1st, 2010
10:34 AM ET

U.S. apologizes for infecting Guatemalans with STDs in 1940s

The United States apologized Friday for a 1946-1948 research study that purposely infected people in Guatemala with sexually transmitted diseases.

A statement by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton Secretary of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius called the action "reprehensible."

"We deeply regret that it happened, and we apologize to all the individuals who were affected by such abhorrent research practices," the joint statement said. "The conduct exhibited during the study does not represent the values of the United States, or our commitment to human dignity and great respect for the people of Guatemala."

Guatemalan officials are aware of the report but will not comment on it until later Friday, presidential spokesman Ronaldo Robles told CNN.

CNN's Nick Valencia contributed to this report.

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Filed under: Guatemala
soundoff (60 Responses)
  1. Vetti

    Well I didnt see Bush do much in getting rid of Bin Laden either. Maybe if Bin Laden wouldve stolen money from US banks instead of the attacks of 911, they would have captured him already.

    October 2, 2010 at 8:31 am | Report abuse |
  2. Jim Brieske

    Vetti. Bin Laden is in Iran. We found out his wife and kids are there. To counter the discovery, so it wouldn't appear Osama Bin Laden was there also, the wife said they were being held against their will.
    That is a lie and only a fool would believe it. Iran is the absolute only safe place on the planet for Osama Bin Laden. It also enables the Iranians to easily coordinate with terrorist groups.
    It is very smart. Because if we capture or kill Osama Bin Laden the Iranians lose capability to stall and delay us while they build a nuclear weapon.
    jim

    October 2, 2010 at 11:17 am | Report abuse |
  3. Jim Brieske

    Oh and President Obama knows Osama Bin Laden is in Iran. He doesn't tell the American people because he would have to attack Iran. He won't do that because he is a coward.
    The only way President Obama would attack Iran is if Iran consisted entirely of very rich white men.
    jim

    October 2, 2010 at 11:41 am | Report abuse |
  4. phil

    Fortunatly we do not need to find binLaden to engage our justice system. All we gotta do is take this mass of incriminating evidence we claim to have against OBL to a federal judge. Next, after looking at our overwhwlming evidence proving that Osama did 9/11, the judge will issue an indictment. That's how it works here in the USA. Any other procedure called by any other name is anti-American.

    October 2, 2010 at 11:51 am | Report abuse |
  5. phil

    Jim? You got sumthin agin' white folk?

    October 2, 2010 at 11:56 am | Report abuse |
  6. ochocincA

    WAOW. AN APOLOGY. THATS ALL AMRICANS ARE GOOD FOR APOLOGIZING. EVERYWHERE U GO AMERICANS SAY AM SORRY. WHAT THE HELL AM SORRY GONNA DO. U ALL POWERFUL PEOPLE OF HELL GAVE AIDS TO AFRICA. THEN EBOLA. THEN ALL THESES STUPID WARS TO FREE AMERICA????WHATEVER. U ALL SENDING YOUNG PEOPLE TO THEIR DEATH. FREE OUR COUNTRY OF WHAT?? ITS ALL A FRAUD. SCAM TO GET RID OF POPULATION. NOW U APOLOGIES FOR GIVING STDS TO GUATEMALA? OH GOD. THIS WORLD IS SICKENING. MAY GOD WAKE U UP...STOP DESTROYING. .STOP APOLOGIZING. STOP THE WARS. STOP LYING. STOP GREED. GOD KNOWS

    October 2, 2010 at 1:51 pm | Report abuse |
  7. ochocincA

    They enpower u. Kill u. Then they sorry. What the hell evver. Bull

    October 2, 2010 at 1:55 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Jim Brieske

    phil. Do you always misinterpret what you read? Poor reading comprehension skills?
    I speak German as one my languages. My ancestors are German and Norwegin. They immigrated the proper legal way at Ellis Island.
    Someday, if we get a president with some ya know those two round things, those laws will be enforced to their fullest extent.
    We defeated the weaker and it's our land. We are not going to spit in the faces of the dead by allowing the millions of individuals who have walked across our border to stay. They don't get to take back land because there are a lot of them.
    We will form the Illegal Alien Bounty Hunters, IABH. It will employ ten thousands of people and free up millions of jobs.
    jim

    October 2, 2010 at 4:12 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Marines123

    Phil and jim and all you. Stay focus! This is STD stuff not stupid Bin Ladin stuff. Go to Bin Ladin expresses concern for flood victims blog! Hey he is in the border region of Afghan and Pak. Not stupid Iran. He would be killed by the Supreme joker!

    October 2, 2010 at 5:45 pm | Report abuse |
  10. jami

    DUKE, I have an idea. Become Muslim and move to Saudi Arabia or Iraq and see which country is better. You should be thankful for red white and blue that protects you

    October 6, 2010 at 9:41 pm | Report abuse |
  11. unknown

    You are fine Americans. You did not cause this. The problem was that people were dying and the doctors were tryingt out what it was the cause of the death of these people. They were studyng why people died and were finding how to find a cure to prevent future illnesses. As the account of this, that the black death existed centuries ago. So, they were finding a cure to help people stop such terrible tragedies. The doctors and pharmacists were inventing medicines to find cure and were checking people how did they die and what it was the cause and they were concerned why the people are dying of this terrible illness such siphilis. Come on. Guatemala is also intelligent. They are people who study a lot, and are very hard worker and has good math skills. You are just fine. Do not worry about it. Nobody is fault.

    April 3, 2013 at 12:12 am | Report abuse |
  12. unknown

    Americans are just fine. Simply, they are very nice. But, they did not do anything wrong. Americans has morals. Simply, because I was advised by an American, just apologize even you did not do wrong. It is a humble gesture.

    April 3, 2013 at 12:15 am | Report abuse |
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