Depleted Uranium: Radiological Genocide
Gulf War Syndrome attracted some attention after the Gulf War. It was a set of mysterious, unexplained and rather nebulous illnesses, including dizziness, memory problems, fatigue, loss of muscle control, and similar. The symptoms were wide-ranging but disproportionately affected Desert Storm veterans. Captain Joyce Riley alleges that the United States provided biological weapons to Saddam who in turn used them on American troops. Other explanations have included chemical agents. But very little attention has been put on a disease that affected both American veterans and Iraq civilians: depleted uranium leakage.
Depleted uranium (hereafter known as DU) is used in combat because of its incredible density. It is a “tank-killer” or armorpiercing (AP) munition. This fact is fairly widely known. Less known is an additional aspect of DU usage. When depleted uranium makes contact with metal, it balloons outwards in an explodng superheated cloud of radiological gas. The upside for military application is that this kills the soldiers inside the armor effectively. The downside is that this radiological material concentrates in flora and fauna and eventually makes its way into humans.
Depleted uranium has seen theatre application in Iraq, Kosovo and (allegedly) Palestine and Afghanistan. It has led to 11,000 deaths of American troops as of March 28, 2005. Iraq has attracted particular attention from Depleted Uranium activists. The worst part about the impact is that it appears to be exponential, continuing to do more damage over each subsequent generation. Cancer and deformities have multiplied, and the expected death toll is upwards of a million men, women and (particularly) children. The impact of such intense radiological material causes congenital diseases the likes of which are never seen, such as internal organs on the outside.
The government claims in public that DU is safe, but leaked documents and internal materials show that they are perfectly aware of the danger. Whether they continue through malice or disregard is a question for discussion, but it is the wrong question. DU is 60% as radiological as enriched uranium and it is disposed of in the same location. The United States and its allies are dumping our nuclear waste on other countries in the prosecution of terrible, immoral and illegal wars. It is up to us to stop them.
Wikipedia – Gulf War Syndrome, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gulf_war_syndrome
Riley, Joyce (Captain). January 15, 1996 speech at Houston, Texas. Transcript available at http://www.all-natural.com/riley.html.
Flounders, Sara. Another War Crime: Iraqi Cities “Hot” With Depleted Uranium. August 18, 2003. International Action Center. Available http://www.iacenter.org/du- warcrime.htm.
World Health Organization. Depleted uranium. Last revised January 2003. Available http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs257/en/.
Sharp, David. Maine Judge Sentences Depleted Uranium Activists to 1-Year in Prison. Associated Press, February 2 2001 6:49 pm.
NewsTarget.com, Antiwar activists say depleted uranium has led to 11,000 American deaths. Wednesday May 18, 2005. Cites Arthur Bernklau and Marion Fulk.
Green, Robert (Retired Commander of Royal Navy). Reflections on War: the immediate and long-term effects of modern weapons.
International Action Center. What Government Documents Admit. http://www.iacenter.org/depleted/dugov.htm
Tucker, James P. Jr. Nationwide Media Blackout Keeps U.S. Public Ignorant About This Important Story. American Free Press, March 28, 2005.
Scherrer, Christian. DU and the Liberation of Iraq. ZNet April 13, 2003. http://www.zmag.org/content/showarticle.cfm?SectionID=15&ItemID=3453