The Implications for Campaigning
Perhaps the only plus that can be drawn from the use of DU in Iraq is that it has concentrated attention on the issue. At CADU we have certainly noticed a lot more media and public focus on the issue than we have seen at any point in the recent past. After years of "fobbing off" letters on the subject from the public with a collection of half-truths and a selective ignoring of key studies, the British Government is finally being directly challenged. Especially for this attack on Iraq the British Government brought out a new 'fact sheet' called Middle East 2003. We have now refuted this point by point and a copy of this is available with this newsletter and on our website. This is partly in response to our supporters who after receiving standard replies from the government have wanted to challenge what they have been sent. Please do use this material yourself in any campaigning work you have been involved in. The New Scientist magazine has also challenged the Government's standard claims that no studies have found "a connection between DU exposure and illness". As the magazine states:
"These statements imply a level of knowledge that we simply do not have. An investigation conducted by Britain's Royal Society and quoted by the minister akes clear that there are numerous ways in which DU can cause illness and even death. And those media reports about Iraq were not substantiated because no studies were ever carried out. Evidence of the absence of any health impacts would be reassuring but all we have at present is an absence of evidence."
This maybe a difficult time in the fight against depleted uranium for campaigners but the point to be made is that the Government and military positions are slipping and now is really the time to keep pressure exerted. As the main fighting in Iraq stops, this is an issue that is not going to go away.
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Page last updated: 6th December 2002