Gosnell Got “Snipping” Idea From Partial-Birth Abortion Inventor

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   May 6, 2013   |   5:32PM   |   Washington, DC

Abortion practitioner Kermit Gosnell has drawn national attention for his gruesome method of killing babies in an abortion-infanticide procedure that involves “snipping” their necks with medical scissors.

The idea of jabbing scissors into the back of necks of babies shortly after their forced induced birth sounds like something out of a creep science fiction film. The reality is, as one pro-life blogger has put together, the idea came from an Ohio abortion practitioner in a paper presented to the National Abortion Federation. In 1992, abortion practitioner Martin Haskell wrote a seminal paper presenting the new partial-birth abortion method, which has since been banned nationally and in dozens of states.

Haskell is often credited with inventing partial-birth abortions. He technically did not come up with that gruesome abortion method but was one of the earliest adopters of it and made it popular with the seminal paper.

NAF is a “respected” trade association of independent abortion clinics that do a large percentage of the abortions in the United States. It’s the organization that knew of Gosnell’s horrors and did nothing. The NAF-Haskell-Gosnell connection is pretty clear.

As pro-life blogger Christina Dunigan writes:

Of all the ways to kill a squirming newborn, a scissors to the back of the neck seems a bit arbitrary. It doesn’t even seem like the easiest method of “ensuring fetal demise.” Even sharp scissors don’t just snip through bone the way they snip through paper.

I don’t think Gosnell simply pulled the idea of “snipping” out of thin air. I’m guessing he got it from somewhere. I’m guessing that he got it from a highly reputable source.

I direct your attention, gentle reader, to Martin Haskell’s D&X presentation paper to the National Abortion Federation, in which Haskell (pictured, right) teaches this prestigious group of highly reputable providers how to use his new and improved abortion method. This method, like Gosnell’s preferred method, involved getting the fetus out entirely in one piece. You might have heard this procedure referred to as “partial birth abortion.”

I’ll let Haskell explain the method himself:

“…the surgeon takes a pair of blunt curved Metzenbaum scissors (pictured — ed.) in the right hand. He carefully advances the tip, curved down, along the spine… until he feels it contact the base of the skull…. the surgeon then forces the scissors into the base of the skull…. Having safely entered the skull, he spreads the scissors to enlarge the opening.”

And that the goal of using the blunt, curved Metzenbaum scissors to ensure fetal demise is pretty clear when one listens to Haskell’s presentation and the discussion afterward. He chuckled that the baby sometimes “helps” — his word — by wrapping its little arms and legs around the “surgeon’s” hand while the scissors are being positioned.

LifeNews writer Sarah Terzo has written about Haskell and a baby born alive after abortion whose skull he destroyed to kill the child.

Haskell is a well-known abortionist who practices in Cincinnati, Ohio. He was instrumental in popularizing the partial-birth abortion procedure. You can read a paper he wrote on partial-birth abortions here.

On September 21, 1989, University of Cincinnati student Yvonne Brower, who was doing a term paper on abortion, was allowed to witness one of the Dr. Haskell’s late-term D&E abortions (see more information about this type of abortion here). According to an article published in the National Review (2), she witnessed the baby being born alive. Brower contacted the police.

Here is an excerpt from the police report:

She stated that by 11 o’clock she had already observed two “D&E” three-day procedures on two patients. She stated on the third patient, however, the abortion was different …. The patient’s water was already broken and she spontaneously gave birth prematurely before the proper D&E procedure could be done. She stated that the baby was delivered feet first very quickly through the birth canal. The head was on its way out when Dr. Haskell reached over and got his scissors and snipped the right side of the baby’s common carotid artery.

But this failed to kill the baby. The police report went on:

The complainant stated that the baby was still moving when she looked at it once again …. it was breathing shallow breaths, as was evidenced by the chest moving up and down. She stated that she could also observe the baby’s hand having slow, controlled, muscular movements, unlike the short jerky twitchy motions she had seen and learned to expect when the baby was already dead before it came out of the birth canal.

Dr. Haskell denied that the baby had been born alive. In an article in the Dayton Daily News, he said:

[I]t came out very quickly after I put the scissors up in the cervical canal and pierced the skull and spread the scissors apart. It popped right on out …. the previous two, I had to use the suction to collapse the skull.”

The police investigation went nowhere; it came down to Brower’s word against the abortionist’s. No charges were ever filed despite her eyewitness account.