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The use of depleted uranium in munitions and weaponry is likely to come under intense scrutiny now that new research that found that uranium can bind to human DNA. The finding will likely have far-reaching implications for returned soldiers, civilians living in what were once war-zones and people who might live near uranium mines or processing facilities...
Now however, Northern Arizona University biochemist Diane Stearns has established that when cells are exposed to uranium, the uranium binds to DNA and the cells acquire mutations, triggering a whole slew of protein replication errors, some of which can lead to various cancers. Stearns' research, published in the journals Mutagenesis and Molecular Carcinogenesis, confirms what many have suspected for some time - that uranium can damage DNA as a heavy metal, independently of its radioactive properties. "Essentially, if you get a heavy metal stuck on DNA, you can get a mutation,"
Basically, there are 5 mechanisms by which uranium can induce mutations and cell damage:
1. Direct damage to DNA molecules from alpha radiation hits
2. Genomic instability as genetic and chromosomal damage are passed through succeeding generations of damaged cells
3. Bystander effect where adjacent cells that are not directly hit by alpha radiation incur DNA genetic damage
4. Chemical toxicity from uranyl ions that bind avidly to DNA-clumped chromatin -- hence their mutagenic capability; uranyl acetate stains are used extensively in electron microscopy
5. Excretion of uranium through the kidney in high doses causing acute nephritis
Uranium induces lung, bone, and hematological cancers and it infiltrates the CNS. It is excreted in the urine and semen, and uranyl ions infiltrate the testes, ovaries, placenta, embryo, and fetus.
The U.S. government has known for at least 20 years that DU weapons produce clouds of poison gas on impact. These clouds of aerosolized DU are laden with billions of toxic sub-micron sized particles. A 1984 Department of Energy conference on nuclear airborne waste reported that tests of DU anti-tank missiles showed that at least 31 percent of the mass of a DU penetrator is converted to nano-particles on impact. In larger bombs the percentage of aerosolized DU increases to nearly 100 percent, Fulk told AFP....
DU is harmful in three ways, according to Fulk: “Chemical toxicity, radiological toxicity and particle toxicity.”...
For example, when mice were exposed to virus-size particles of Teflon (0.13 microns) in a University of Rochester study, there were no ill effects. But when mice were exposed to nano-particles of Teflon for 15 minutes, nearly all the mice died within 4 hours.
“Exposure pathways for depleted uranium can be through the skin, by inhalation, and ingestion,” Moret wrote. “Nano-particles have high mobility and can easily enter the body. Inhalation of nano-particles of depleted uranium is the most hazardous exposure, because the particles pass through the lung-blood barrier directly into the blood.
«After some time, all air-borne particles fall slowly down and settle on grass and vegetables, fruit or expanses of water where they become inevitably a guest of food and drink to animals and [people] alike. Even if the unwanted presence is known in advance - but very often it is utterly ignored - getting rid completely of inorganic particles can be very difficult»
Particles of one nanometer in diameter, can float in air indefinitely due to Brownian action or thermal motion of its molecules. How far it travels will depend on wind, air currents, and obstacles in its path...
The focus of Dr. Gatti's research has been solid inorganic particles of sizes one nanometer to 0.1 micron, i.e. ultra-fine particles or metal fumes. According to her:
«Once the debris that size enters the body, be it via the digestive or respiratory system, they can easily negotiate the luminal (cavity of a tubular structure) tissues and either be captured by the tissue itself...
The physical characteristics of DU fragments released in combat include: their ceramic smooth surface, fragility and potential shattering, nanometer particle size, foreign body irritation, and potential to stay in the body for very long periods of time and be transported through the lung-blood, blood-brain, and placenta barriers....
By Marya Mann, Ph. D.
In the first two months of 2006, there were 172,000 new cases of lung cancer in the United States—as many as there were in the entire year of 2005.
What caused this shocking 600% increase?
War. War, even far from home and erased from your mind by the TV’s remote control switch, continues its generous distribution of deadly radioactive aerosols around the world on global air currents. They contaminate the air, surface water, flora, fauna, and the entire food chain.
“It threatens to kill and destroy a whole world,” says Dr. Gabriel Cousins.
There have been four genocidal nuclear wars the U.S. government and its British ally have foisted on the world since 1991 – Radioactive DU has already been found in 45 locations in Hawaii where the Army has been practicing wargames. Some of the current medical problems found in Iraq and Bosnia -- neurological disorders, cancers, birth defects, tumors, and bleeding gums -- are already showing up on the islands known as “Paradise in the Pacific.”
Breathing radioactive particlulate matter has long been known to cause lung cancer. Miners working in uranium mines and other types of mining where radioactivity is an occupational hazard have a higher incidence of lung cancer. This danger from airborne radioactive iodine is much greater than that found from cigarette smoking, and has more far-reaching implications.
Following exposure to radioactive debris in the air from shells and bombs, between 2 to 5 years of time is needed to lead to the appearance of malignancies. Thus, the bombing of Afghanistan which began in October 2001, and the 2003 bombing in Iraq, lead to spikes in lung cancer rates three or so years later, which is why the 2006 lung cancer rates in the U.S. skyrocketed.
The inhabitants and the land of the Marshall Islands and the Bikini Islands were poisoned in the forties due to nuclear testing. Look at Kaho’olawe, still polluted despite over $400 million in cleanup efforts.
Look at the Vieques Puerto Rico where the bombing practice resulted in a bomb being dropped on a civilian by mistake; the Navy was eventually forced to leave due to public opposition.
DEPLETED URANIUM contamination is comfirmed at Schofield Barracks, Oahu and at Pohakuloa Training Area, Hawai’i Island.
The Army has admitted the presence of this toxin, and further training/detonations will simply stir more of this dust into the air, blow it downwind into Kona with serious health implications for residents and soldiers alike.
The military claims that depleted uranium munitions are low level radioactivity and are not harmful to health and environment. The military's claims are false.
The military's talking points are about the solid form depleted uranium, the military never addresses Hawai'i residents' concerns, which is the ballistic form of depleted uranium. When depleted uranium munitions are used in war or artillery practices, these munitions have a devastating effect on public health and the environment.
Once DU munitions are launched, they become ballistic. They catch fire, and on impact they can punch through anything with tremendous force causing trillions of tiny radioactive particles of DU dust to be scattered in the environment and carried in the air.
This is when the real public health problem begins. Once airborne, these vaporized radioactive heavy metal particles can be inhaled or ingested because of radioactive contamination of air, food or water supply.
MORET: The atmosphere globally is contaminated with it. It’s completely mixed in one year. I’m an expert on atmospheric dust. I’m a geoscientist, a geologist, and that’s what I studied and did my research on. It’s really a fascinating subject. We have huge dust storms that are a million square miles and transport millions of tons of dust and sand every year around the world.
The main centers of these dust storms are the Gobi Desert in China, which is where the Chinese did atmospheric testing, so that’s all contaminated with radiation, and it gets transported right over Japan, and it comes straight across the Pacific and dumps all its sand and dust on the U.S., North America. It’s loaded with radioactive isotopes, soot, pesticides, chemicals, pollution — everything is in it — fungi, bacteria, viruses.
The Sahara Desert is another huge dust center, and it goes up all over Europe and straight across the Atlantic, to the Caribbean, and up the East Coast. Of course, you get it in Texas with those hurricanes. They all originate in the Sahara Desert....
ICONOCLAST: What can soldiers expect when they come home?
MORET: If they were in Bradley Fighting Vehicles, they’re coming home with rectal cancer from sitting on ammunition boxes. The young women are reporting terrible problems with endometriosis. That’s the lining of the uterus malfunctioning, and they just bleed and bleed and bleed. Some of them have uterine cancer — 18 and 19 and 20 year olds.
The Army will not even diagnose it. They send them back to the battlefields. They won’t treat them or diagnose them. A group of 20 soldiers pushed from Kuwait to Baghdad in 2003 in all the fighting. Eight of those 20 soldiers have malignancies....
ICONOCLAST: So the prognosis for America isn’t really good?
MORET: No, it’s really bad.
ICONOCLAST: And if this continues then?
MORET: It’s going to kill off the world’s population. It already is, and it doesn’t just effect people. It effects all living systems. The plants, the animals, the bacteria. It effects everything.
ICONOCLAST: So the things that we eat for instance, if they have DU in them, then we’ll just get it in our systems, and so we’re polluting the oceans, so that could effect all marine life?
MORET: Yes, it’s in the air, water, and soil. The half-life of DU, Uranium 238, is 4.5 billion years the age of the Earth.
ICONOCLAST: With the damage that’s been done to this point, can we turn back? We can’t clean it up?
MORET: There’s no way to clean it up. What happens is these tiny particles float around the Earth. There are still plutonium and uranium floating around the Earth from bomb testing. These particles are so tiny that molecules bumping into them keep them lofted in the air, and so the only way for them to get out of the atmosphere is rain, snow, fog, pollution, which will clear them out of the air and deposit them in the environment. What happens is the surface of these particles gets wetted by the moisture in the air. They come down and land on stuff and stick to it like a glue. You can’t ever get the particles off whatever they’re sticking to because have you ever put a drop of water on a microscope slide and then put another one on top of it? Can you pull those apart?...
ICONOCLAST: So the guys coming back from the war, their sperm is probably going to be —
MORET: Damaged. Yes. They also have depleted uranium in their semen. When they’re intimate with their partners, they internally contaminate them with depleted uranium. The women become sick themselves. They have depleted uranium in their bodies, and there is something called burning syndrome. Just absolutely horrible. You can read about it in an article by David Rose in the December Vanity Fair. It’s on the Internet.
A friend of mine is the widow of a Canadian Gulf War veteran. David Rose interviewed her, and she griped about the burning semen. She said, \”I had 20 condoms full of frozen peas in my freezer at all times, and after we were intimate, I would insert one into my vagina, and that is the only way I could bear the pain from the burning semen.\” And it goes through condoms, to...
ICONOCLAST: Let’s talk about the children of Iraq.
MORET: After the Gulf War, they had maybe one baby a week born with birth defects in the hospitals in Basra. Now they are having 10-12 a day. The levels of uranium are increasing in the population every year. Every day, people are eating and drinking while the whole environment is contaminated. Just what you’d expect. There are more babies born with birth defects, and the birth defects are getting more and more severe.
An Iraqi doctor told me that babies are being born now that are lumps of flesh. She said that they don’t have heads or legs or arms. It’s just a lump of flesh. This also happened to populations that were not removed from islands in the Pacific when the bomb tests occurred. Basically, governments were using them as guinea pigs....
The U.S. has blocked any accountability at international and national levels. There’s a total cover-up just like with Agent Orange, the atomic veterans, MKULTRA, the mind control experiments the CIA did. This is more of the same, but the issue is much, much worse because the genetic future of all those contaminated is effected. Now vast regions around our world, as well as our atmosphere, are contaminated with the depleted uranium. They’ve used so much. It’s the equivalent number of atoms, as the Japanese professor calculated it, to over 400,000 Nagasaki bombs that has been released into the atmosphere. That’s really an underestimate.