Depleted Uranium: The BBC’s John Simpson does a hatchet job on Fallujah’s genetically damaged children
Under the title ‘Fallujah’s children’s ‘genetic damage’ that old war horse ‘literally’ of the BBC’s foreign propaganda service, John Simpson, manages not to mention the phrase ‘depleted uranium’ when allegedly reporting on the alarming rise in birth defects that include cancer, leukaemia and a horrific rise in child mortality since the US demolished the city of Fallujah in 2004. And it’s not until right at the end of the piece that the US attack on Fallujah is even mentioned, let alone depleted uranium!
“Even if it’s possible to produce watertight scientific proof that American weapons were responsible for the genetic damage it will be almost impossible for the people who suffered to get any redress. American legislation makes it extremely difficult to sue the US government over acts of war.”
Well that takes care of that little problem then, doesn’t it. I trust the US government will reward Simpson for his slavish support of its wars of conquest and destruction.
Indeed, just look at the title of the video, the phrase genetic damage is in single quotes, thus the damage to the children of Fallujah, which is clearly and obviously genetic in origin, is questioned by the BBC’s spin meister Simpson. Worse, the video shows doctors comparing the effects of depleted uranium on the children of Fallujah with that of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and point out that in fact, they’re much worse than the damage inflicted by the Empire’s atomic bombs.
Dan Hind, in his latest piece describes the BBC’s role as follows:
“[The BBC's] journalistic failings derive from its nature as a creature of parliamentary opinion. If the executive and most of Parliament are uninterested in seeing an issue debated then the BBC remains silent. Given the centrality of the BBC in our information system its dependence on cues from an out of control political class lends mainstream coverage of public affairs an increasingly hallucinatory quality. When Westminster wants something – from a war in the Middle East to the privatization of the NHS – the BBC falls into line.” – ‘What If They Held A Constitutional Convention and Everybody Came?‘ By Dan Hind
I wanted to put the BBC video up here, but inconveniently, The BBC decided that us punters who pay for the BBC, are denied that right, so you’ll have to watch it here, but hurry up, who knows how long the BBC will allow us to view it? This in spite of the fact that it states on its website:
Clearly this video is one that the BBC doesn’t want distributed too widely in spite of its disingenuous and downright misleading message (or perhaps because of it?).
Facts in the video about genetic damage (note not alleged genetic damage) to the children of Fallujah in the video that Simpson apparently didn’t notice include:
- A twelve-fold increase in childhood cancers since 2004
- Child mortality in Fallujah 80 per thousand but in neighbouring Jordan it’s only 17 per thousand.
- The ratio of boys to girls born has dramatically altered. Normally it’s a little over a 1,000 thousand boys to 1,000 girls but in Fallujah it’s 860 boys to a 1,000 girls, an effect seen after the atomic bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
- Horrific birth defects (too horrible for the BBC to show)
And even after a specialist talks about “genetic damage” in Fallujah, Simpson tells us:
“Yet the way the survey was done, asking people to fill in forms, means that it still isn’t finally conclusive.”
I’m not sure what Simpson wants here (aside from “watertight scientific proof”), if the survey of 4,800 people, conducted by the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health doesn’t fit the bill, what does?
But to add insult to injury, Simpson ends the report by blaming the Iraqi government!
“But even the Iraqi government doesn’t seem interested in finding out the truth, perhaps because Fallujah is a predominately Sunni Muslim town and the government is overwhelmingly Shiite Muslim.”
So Simpson manages to make the alleged Sunni/Shiite divide as the reason why we can’t get at the truth of the situation in Fallujah! Once more, the victims get blamed.
This is outrageous stuff, truly propaganda of the worst kind. Hopefully, if there’s any justice in this world, one day Simpson will be called to account for his crimes of misreporting.
Efforts to determine the health and environmental risks of depleted uranium (DU) weaponry in Iraq have been hampered by the Obama administration. DU, which makes shell and bullet casings harder and more capable of piercing armor, can contaminate the environment and contribute to health problems, including cancer and birth defects.
The Dutch peace group IKV Pax Christi complained in a new report that “Coalition Forces” (read: the United States) have refused to provide information on when and where invading forces fired DU weaponry.
Due to a “lack of transparency” by the U.S., “there is an absence of crucial information on firing coordinates, the quantities and types of DU munitions used; data gaps relating to the efforts undertaken to clean up contaminated sites and material are hindering efforts to assess risks and implement remediation work,” the report reads.
There are reportedly more than 300 sites in Iraq that were contaminated by DU weapons, many of them located in populated areas.
It is estimated that 400 tons of DU ammunition were fired in Iraq, mostly by American units, during the Gulf War and the 2003 invasion. Although the United States continues to use depleted uranium munitions, the report notes that “over the last couple of years the US Army has invested in research into replacing DU rounds in the A-10 with tungsten alloy based munitions, as well as non-DU 105 and 120mm munitions for the M1A2 Abrams tank, referring in their rationale for this move to DU’s potential environmental impact.”
To Learn More:
In a State of Uncertainty: Impact and Implications of the Use of Depleted Uranium in Iraq (IKV Pax Christi) (pdf)
Comments on Dec. 12, 2012 NRC meeting with the Army in Maryland from 10AM-1PM Hawaii time. The public could listen in and make comments/ask questions at the end of the meeting:
The Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) will be issuing a license for the mongoose to guard the hen house in Hawaii. The Army will be issued an NRC license to possess Depleted uranium (DU) in Hawaii at Schofield Barracks and the Pohakuloa Training Area (PTA). In effect, the NRC is licensing Hawaii nuclear waste dumps and allowing those dumps to be bombed, spreading the nuclear dump debris wherever the wind takes it.
The State Dept. of Health made no comment, nor did it ask any questions following the meeting.
It is a fact that DU exists at Schofield Barracks and PTA, and perhaps other present and former military sites in Hawaii, including Kaho’olawe and Makua Valley. How much is not known. A minimum of 700, perhaps more than 2000, DU Davy Crockett spotting rounds have been fired at Pohakuloa. Less than 1% of PTA’s 133,000-acres have been surveyed. DU cluster bombs, and more than a dozen DU penetrating rounds, DU bunker busters, etc. may also have been fired at PTA and elsewhere. All branches of the US military use DU weapons today.
It’s clear to me that we cannot rely on so called regulators to fix the problem. Nuclear regulators are just as much part of the problem as bank regulators. The DOH is also part of the problem.
Where have our health officials been all these years on the issue. The military in Hawaii has lied and uses deception repeatedly. The US military mission goes before concern for the health and safety of its own troops and Hawaii’s people and land. Uranium is now showing up in Big Island residents’ urine.
Is it related to PTA, Fukushima or what?
The people have a right to know.
Is the military above the law?
What’s needed is a peoples’ movement of non-violent resistance to stop the bombing to protect the people and land of Hawaii against attacks by the U.S. military.
- US military chiefs planned to blow up the moon with nuclear bomb as show of Cold War muscle, physicist claims (independent.co.uk)
- US to supply Israel with weapons worth $650 million (occupiedpalestine.wordpress.com)