There has been much debate in recent years about the role of the East German Ministry for State Security (Stasi) in the disinformation campaign launched in the early 1980s by the Soviet State Security Committee (KGB) regarding the origin and nature of acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS). The KGB's operation, codenamed “Denver” by the Stasi (not “Infektion,” as many online sources now erroneously assert), claimed that AIDS was deliberately devised by U.S. biological warfare specialists for the U.S. government to spread in minority communities in the United States. Based on the available evidence, the Stasi's role in the AIDS disinformation campaign was limited in 1985–1986 to (1) keeping watch over Soviet-East German scientist Jakob Segal, who propagated a variant of the KGB's thesis; (2) helping to arrange for the publication and distribution of a brochure with Segal's thesis at the Non-Aligned Movement summit in Harare in 1986; and (3) facilitating Segal's interviews with certain journalists. Just as important for the ongoing formulation and spread of the KGB's AIDS disinformation was a cycle of misinformation and disinformation that arose between U.S.-based conspiracy theorists—especially Lyndon LaRouche and his followers—and authors and publications espousing Moscow's preferred theses regarding AIDS.

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