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California State University, Dominguez Hills
University of Wisconsin, Parkside
Created: December 19, 2004
Latest Update: December 19, 2004

E-Mail Icon jeannecurran@habermas.org
takata@uwp.edu

Index of Topics on Site Depleted Uranium Weaponry: Present Use in Iraq
This whole series of files was prompted by a Truthout e-mail this morning, in which I realized for the first time the extent to which we are using depleted uranium weaponry. As in everything else, there are multiple perspectives. My first concern was the Gulf War syndrome, and illnesses suffered by our soldiers on their return from the Middle East. None of this material made me feel any better. But I had been unaware that we used depleted uranium weaponry during the Gulf War and in Kosovo. How easy it is to be blissfully unaware.

Whether or not handling the weaponry creates exposure, our soldiers are remaining in areas like Falluja after such weaponry has been used. Yes, I know that exposure to uranium oxide particles, which are left floating in the air by the discharge of dpeleted uranium weaponry, are deemed "acceptable" by the US government. By whose standards? By what criteria? And how come we've not been alerted to this? In one of the files I uploaded for you, the one from the Netherlands, I think, scientists say there is no way yet to tell what effect such uranium oxide particles have when breathed in internally. Testing has been done only on what the ground level radiation measurement effect is. And of course, the effects of radiation don't show up immediately.

I don't have the answers. Hell, I didn't even know about the questions until today. But, at the risk of spoiling some of your rest time, I think this is a social issue we cannot afford to ignore. Apparently this all started back in the 70's because the government had a lot of left over metal from uranium projects. So they gave it to munitions makers. And we started making our weapons with it. Gee, that sounds like a plan.

Where have I been since the 70's? Grabbing things I wanted, had to have, clothes, trips, decorations, entertainment. How did I let myself get so trapped in our acquisitive commodity culture that I missed this whole connection to the Gulf War Syndrome? Thinking critically and asking questions isn't easy. You gotta work at it. You gotta save some of your energy for what really matters. Like whether we have an irradiated earth in a couple of decades.

Maybe that's the best thing we found with transform_dom. Miko sees Truthout and alerts us to it. I subscribe. And finally, I get it. We're irradiating the planet we live on. That can't be OK, even if it doesn't kill us yet. What's it going to do to our food supply when those uranium oxide particles drift over borders, or when we eat something from the global market that has radiation toxicity? I can't prove it rationally, but I trust the transcendental qualities of my spiritual self that are telling me "you can't treat Mother Earth like this."

I'm gonna go watch TV with Arnold. It can't be as bad as informing myself and thinking critically. jeanne

Resources:

  • Depleted Uranium On the international action center website. Information, Activism, and Resistance to U.S. Militarism, War, and Corporate Greed, Linking with Struggles Against Racism and Oppression within the United States. Founded by Ramsey Clark, Former U.S. Attorney General. Los Aneles Center on Pico.

  • Depleted Uranium: How the Pentagon Radiates Soldiers & Civilians with DU Weapons Second Edition. Selections compiled and edited by the Depleted Uranium Education Project. International Action Center. New York City. This is not easy reading. There are videos. They are not for entertainment. But as Truthout sent out information today on the use of depleted uranium in Iraq, I needed to compile information for us. I am frightened for our soldiers and their children. I am frightened for the Iraqis. I do not trust that we know enough about what we are doing with depleted uranium.

  • Traprock Peace Center Misleads Public on Depleted Uranium By Robert Holloway. Hard to tell what Holloway's qualifications really are. Mainly he seems to be part of a training school for radiation safety that makes money from its training program. But if you scroll halfway down the file, there is a letter there: Comments by Dr. Otto Raabe, Health Physicist, in regard to Doug Rokke. Dr. Raabe: Prof. Otto G. Raabe, Ph.D. CHP, Center for Health and the Environment, University of California, Davis, CA 95616.

  • Tracking a Deadly 'Balkan Syndrome'Article 1 of 1, Article ID: 005510E9A64BBCD353D3A. January 15, 2001, Newsweek, U.S. EDITION
    Nato finds itself under a new attack in Europe. NATO military officials and ambassadors will meet this week to discuss deaths allegedly caused by uranium exposure in the Balkans. Since the Kosovo conflict ended in June 1999, seven Italian soldiers and one Red Cross official who served in Bosnia and Kosovo have died of leukemia and other forms of cancer, which some people link to depleted-uranium armor-piercing shells used by U.S. aircraft. Soldiers from Belgium and Portugal have also died, but . . .

  • Downwind : Depleted Uranium Weapons in the Age of Virtual War Pinhole Pictures Website. 4 clips that you can view on that site. Left perspective. 50 min. 2001.
    Downwind draws a line from Hiroshima through the Nevada nuclear test site to the sands of Iraq and Kuwait, where thousands of soldiers and civilians were exposed to toxic, irradiating dust particles by the use of depleted Uranium tank penetrators.

    Used extensively in the 1991 and 2003 Gulf Wars, these DU weapons effectively destroy heavy armor and fortified bunkers, yet they release very fine Uranium Oxide particles, which may be inhaled or ingested.

    Though the long-term effects are highly contested, there is little indication that the U.S. military informed soldiers or civilians about the possible adverse health and environmental effects.

    Blending broad issues of History and memory with the near ubiquitous control of war imagery by the military, Downwind raises questions about the true human cost when the desire for total victory outweighs the moral obligations of 'humanitarian intervention'.

  • CONFERENCE RESOLUTION 2 FROM THE WORLD DU/URANIUM WEAPONS CONFERENCE HAMBURG, GERMANY Final Draft -- 25 October, 2003. Scientist's Communiqué. This makes clear the possible, perhaps even probable dangers in the uranium oxide particles that are freed in the atmosphere when depleted uranium weapons are used.

  • Report: Expert debate on Uranium Weapons Posted on 28 November 2004 by RISQ by Henk van der Keur & Lizzy Bloem. International Coalition to Ban Uranium Weapons. Based in Netherlands. Confirms that scientists disagree on degree of danger, which U.S. calls "acceptable." To whom? On what basis?

  • PROTECTING PEOPLE AGAINST RADIATION EXPOSURE IN THE AFTERMATH OF A RADIOLOGICAL ATTACK A Report from a Task Group of the International Commission on Radiational Protection. FINAL TG DRAFT. April 2004. DRAFT FOR ICRP USE ONLY-NOT TO BE REFERRED TO OR QUOTED. Refers to Radiation Delivery Devices, "Dirty Bombs," etc.



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