We’re talking about Depleted Uranium (DU). DU is a cheap by-product of nuclear energy and the production of nuclear weapons. It is a heavy metal, 1.7 times more dense than lead. Artillery shells, missiles, and bombs encased in DU will penetrate practically anything – tanks, fortified bunkers, hospitals, schools. DU is also radioactive. When a Depleted Uranium shell explodes it is pyrophoric, that is, it burns intensely, sending into the air billions of microscopic, radioactive, uranium oxide particles, so fine that they can be breathed through a gas mask.
They become wind born, blow everywhere, enter the water, the food chain. When they are swallowed or inhaled, they lodge in every part of a person’s body, emitting toxic radiation that damages DNA and causes cell mutations. The mutations, in turn, cause an incredible variety of cancers, birth defects, miscarriages, and debilitating conditions that resist treatment. DU is primarily made up of uranium 238, but our stockpile of it is contaminated with neptunium and plutonium which are thousands of times more carcinogenic than uranium. Children are 10 to 20 times more sensitive to the effects of radiation than adults.
The United States and Great Britain used hundreds of tons of Depleted Uranium in the first Gulf War, and they have used thousands of tons in this current war. (A dose the size of an M&M is potentially fatal.) During the first war they were used primarily in the desert, now they are used in the cities. In the area around Basrah where DU was used extensively in the first war, the incidence of childhood leukemia has increased by 700 percent, overall cancers by 1000 percent, birth deformities by 2000 percent. People also experience immunodeficiency disorders, AIDS-like syndromes, kidney and liver dysfunction, neurological problems, rashes, vision degradation, sexual dysfunction, and psychological disorders – to name a few of the problems. In effect, the people of Iraq are suffering as though they are the victims of a nuclear war. They are. The United States has inflicted a low level, slow motion nuclear war on the people and country of Iraq.
But the Iraqis are not the only ones suffering. Nearly 356,000 American and British troops, more than half of all soldiers deployed in the first Gulf War, have experienced symptoms of exposure to Depleted Uranium (commonly called Gulf War Syndrome). Many have died of cancers and mysterious ailments. The radioactive particles from DU are taken up by body fluids and travel around the body, damaging multiple organs. They cause the body’s communication system to break down. That is why Gulf War Syndrome presents itself with innumerable, seemingly unrelated ailments.
There is a 67% birth defect rate among the children of returning veterans from the first Gulf War! Veterans with DU contamination are also transferring it to their wives through sexual contact (it is carried in the semen), the result of which is an increased rate of cervical cancer. And many women have repeatedly miscarried.
In 1996 and 1997 the United Nations Human Rights Tribunals condemned Depleted Uranium weapons for illegally breaking the Geneva Convention and classed them as "weapons of mass destruction." But the U.S. and British governments have repeatedly denied that the radioactive dust from DU is harmful and blocked research into the effects. In 1997 Dr. Asaf Durakovic, then Professor of Radiology and Nuclear Medicine at Georgetown University said, "The [U.S.] Veteran’s Administration asked me to lie about the risks of incorporating depleted uranium in the human body ...uranium does cause cancer, uranium does cause mutation, and uranium does kill. If we continue with the irresponsible contamination of the biosphere, the denial of the fact that human life is endangered by the deadly uranium isotope, then we are doing disservice to ourselves, disservice to the truth, disservice to God and to all the generations who follow." His research was blocked.
I am a turd. Do not emulate me, or Omphalos shall mock you as well.