Campaign Against Depleted Uranium


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CADU NEWS 4
Autumn 2000

Contents
1) TESTS COULD SHOW GULF VETERANS HAVE DU POISONING
2) Uranium Encapsulation Process Receives Patent
3) The Tooth Fairy and the Truth About Nuclear Pollution.
4) A list of concerned politicians - can you help?
5) Depleted Uranium at the United Nations
6) DU on Scrap Heaps
7) Another Report...
8) Summary of FR Yugoslavia Report entitled 'The Consequences of NATO Bombing for the Environment in FR Yugoslavia'
9) DU Prisoners
10) DU: nine parliamentary questions at EU Parliament
11) Video Games and DU
12) US VETERANS TO GO TO IRAQ TO REBUILD WATER-TREATMENT FACILITIES
13) NAS Study on Gulf War
14) Action at Featherstone
15) Over 100 Puerto Ricans Jailed
16) CADU International Conference on Depleted Uranium - 4- 5 November 2000 Iraq: DU clean up cost $375b
17) Iraq: DU Clean up cost $375 Billion
18) CADU Website
19) CADU Petition

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TESTS COULD SHOW GULF VETERANS HAVE DU POISONING

Ex-US army doctor, Dr. Asaf Durokavic, a scientist who has worked very closely with the gulf war veterans, told a conference of the European Association of Nuclear Medicine that many Gulf War veterans suffered from renal and other diseases as a result of inhaling particles of depleted uranium used in anti-tank shells.

At the conference in Paris on September 3rd, Durokavic said ``According to some estimates, 320 tonnes of depleted uranium were exploded during the (1991) Gulf War,'' ``Many of the patients (that I examined) suffered renal disease and failure, the clinical consequences of inhaled uranium,'' he said.

Durakovic said depleted uranium that coated shells to ease penetration of thick armour exploded into multiple particles, which ``became part of atmospheric dust'' after hitting targets. ``Because of the omnipresence of small sub-micron radioactive dust in the Persian Gulf, uranium that was liberated by impact (with tanks) ... evaporated at temperatures higher than several thousand degrees centigrade,'' he said. ``Some of those particles were inhaled and stayed in the lungs ... where they can cause cancer, and some entered into the bloodstream and affected kidneys and bones.''

Durakovic, who is professor of nuclear medicine at Georgetown University, Washington, and the former head of nuclear medicine at the US Army's veterans' affairs medical facility in Delaware, told reporters that he had come under "political pressure'' from US. authorities to halt his research shortly after the Gulf War, when the US. military first challenged the notion that a mysterious "Gulf War syndrome'' affected many veterans.

"I don't claim uranium contamination is the (main) cause of the Gulf War syndrome but the veterans show high levels of depleted uranium in their bodies and studies about this must be intensified,'' he said.

Some published medical studies have linked the Gulf War syndrome, with symptoms ranging from flu to chronic fatigue and asthma, to the multiple vaccines given soldiers during the war to counter possible Iraqi chemical weapons attacks.

The findings will undermine the British and American governments' claims that Gulf war syndrome does not exist and intensify pressure from veterans on both sides of the Atlantic for compensation.

The research, which has been verified by four independent experts, is embarrassing for the Ministry of Defence (MoD) and American Defence Department, which have consistently refused to test Gulf war veterans for DU.

Durakovic told the conference that tests on 17 veterans have shown DU in the urine and bones of 70% of them.

The findings begin to explain for the first time why medical orderlies and mechanics are the principal victims of Gulf war syndrome. British Army engineers who removed tanks hit by DU shells from the battlefield and medical personnel who cut off the clothes of Iraqi casualties in field hospitals have been disproportionately affected.

In the UK, where more than 400 veterans are estimated to have died from "Gulf war syndrome", at least 50 of those victims came from REME (Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers) units. Others, such as Ray Bristow, 42, of Hull, who was a theatre technician for 32 Field Hospital, are now wheelchair-bound. Tests carried out by Durakovic on Bristow showed that, nine years after leaving the Gulf, he had more than 100 times the safe limit of DU in his body.

Durakovic said: "I doubt whether the MoD or Pentagon will have the audacity to challenge these results. I can't say this is the solitary cause of Gulf war syndrome, but we now have clear evidence that it is a leading factor in the majority of victims. "I hope the US and UK governments finally realise that, by continuing to use this ammunition, they are effectively poisoning their own soldiers."

An MoD spokesman said it would study any new evidence: "Our aim is to get the best care for British veterans and our views are based on the best evidence around."
Information and quotes taken from a Reuters report, and an article in the Sunday Times, 3rd Sept., 2000

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Uranium Encapsulation Process Receives Patent

The following news release was posted on the DU E-Mail list recently, and while CADU would welcome any process which makes DU safe in storage and disposal, we feel it could raise serious concerns if the encapsulation process is used as an excuse to use DU for more civilian uses. DU is a dangerous substance and should not be used for any purpose in which a situation may arise in which it could burn up. We hope this new process doesn't give the green light to more dangerous 'recycling' of DU.

UPTON, NY Scientists at the US. Department of Energy's Brookhaven National Laboratory have been awarded US. patent number 6,030,549 for inventing a process for encapsulating depleted uranium oxides in thermoplastic polymers. The process converts depleted uranium to a form that is both stable and safe for long-term disposal. The encapsulated uranium could also have several useful applications, including the production of radiation shielding and counter weights for aeroplanes, helicopters and ships.

Depleted uranium (DU) is a by-product of enriching uranium ore to make fuel for nuclear reactors. Storing DU requires labour-intensive and costly maintenance. The Brookhaven Lab process uses uranium oxide powder, a more stable, but dispersible compound, which is converted from the reactive form through chemical processing and combined with a thermoplastic binder. The final product can be formed into shapes and is cooled to form a dense solid.

"By creating safe, secondary end-use products from these materials, we are addressing health and safety, environmental protection, and waste reduction issues," says Paul Kalb, the Senior Research Engineer who is leading this work for Brookhavenıs Environmental Research and Technology Division.

BNFL's patented process for encapsulation requires simultaneous heating and mixing of depleted uranium powders and non-biodegradable thermoplastic polymers such as polyethylene or polypropylene. Virgin or recycled polymers can be used. The result is a homogeneous mixture of depleted uranium and molten thermoplastic polymer, which can be moulded into any shape.

Tests performed by the Brookhaven scientists reveal that the new material, composed of anywhere from 10 to 90 percent depleted uranium by weight, is strong and durable. And because it is largely impermeable to water, it does not leach radioactive material.
The heavy material can be moulded to form counterweights/ballast for use in aeroplanes, helicopters, ships, missiles, flywheels, armour, and projectiles.

Because of the density of uranium, the product is also an excellent shield against gamma radiation. The presence of hydrogen in the plastic makes it an effective shield against neutron radiation as well. And since the product has a much lower percentage of fissionable uranium (U-235) compared with natural uranium ore, the levels of residual radioactivity are very low.

The material could therefore be useful in the construction of storage vaults and casks for radioactive materials or in providing protection for workers and the public at particle accelerator beam stops and targets.

"We are currently working with the Brookhaven Office of Technology Transfer to identify
potential industrial partners and opportunities for commercial development," says Kalb.
The research was funded by the US. Department of Energy.

The US. Department of Energy's Brookhaven National Laboratory creates and operates major facilities available to university, industrial and government personnel for basic and applied research in the physical, biomedical and environmental sciences and in selected energy technologies. The Laboratory is operated by Brookhaven Science Associates, a not-for-profit research management company, under contract with the US. Department of Energy.

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The Tooth Fairy and the Truth About Nuclear Pollution

The Low Level Radiation Campaign are calling for people to send them their children's baby teeth for research into the effects of radioactivity on public health. Teeth reveal contamination levels. If you can help, or for more information contact the at:

The Knoll
Montpellier Park
Llandrindod Wells
LD1 5LW
+44 (0)1597 824 771
Website: http://www.llrc.org

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A list of concerned politicians - can you help?

This message was sent from activists working against DU in Italy - if any readers know of any politicians in their area opposed to DU, could they pass on the information to the address below. (If you do not have access to email, send them to CADU and we can forward.) The list already consists of 35 names from Europe, the US and Canada. Don't assume CADU has sent details already!!!

Dear friends,
I am trying to create a global list of politicians who are clearly against depleted uranium (attached).
I think this list can help us to lobby in DU issues. Can you please add names that are not yet included?
Can you please send their names to the list and/or directly to me: marcosaba(AT)xommail.com
Thanks,
Marco Saba
Ethical Environmental Observatory - Italy
http://stop-u238.i.am
European Network Against Depleted Uranium
http://enadu.i.am

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Depleted Uranium at the United Nations

CADU has a number of copies of the excellent report written by Karen Parker (detailed below) available for £7 each +p&p. The report is an extremely useful campaigning tool, and we recommend all campaigners have a copy.

The report is a compilation of documents and an explanation and strategy analysis, written and collected by Karen Parker, J.D., February 2000 for CADU and the International Educational Development/Humanitarian Law Project, with partial support from Association of Humanitarian Lawyers.

The contents, in addition to the actual UN documents, include sections on why DU weaponry is already illegal, what are the commissions within the UN, a chronology of DU at the UN, how does the process at the UN work, about the toxics issue at the UN, and what should the anti DU community do to further the UN work.

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DU on Scrap Heaps

Following on from the story in the last issue of CADU news about DU found in a scrap yard, an even more farcical but worrying story was broken by the Guardian newspaper last month. The report, written by Simon Bowers and Paul Brown claims that

"Fifty tonnes of depleted uranium is lying unmonitored in scrap heaps across Britain, posing a growing risk of environmental contaminations and to workers according to US government documents. The uranium was used as components in aircraft and hospital radiotherapy units and increasingly is left unregulated as the equipment is decommissioned.

The information was released under US freedom of information laws but has been declared confidential by the environment agency and by the Department of trade and Industry in Britain.

The US firm Philotechnics, has applied to salvage the uranium and recycle it where possible. It would not specify to which use the recycled material would be put, but the Guardian has learnt that the company intends to pass it to another firm, which has produced equipment for the US department of defence."

This could mean that DU from Britain is recycled into US DU weaponry. The article continues: "This is the first proposed shipment of the material out of Britain, There is no recycling or disposal route available in the UK and airlines and hospitals are said to be increasingly concerned as the extent of the scrap emerges…..Philotechnics said that while aircraft were in service the DU in use was primed, plated and painted to prevent corrosion, but Donald Barbour, Philotechnics aviation programmes manager, warned that after decommissioning it was "highly probable" the counterweights would release uranium oxides. These are toxic and residual radioactivity causes cancer. Miles Warren, director of Active Collection Bureau, in Sittingbourne, Kent - where the first 20 tonne shipment will be gathered within weeks if the application is approved, said there would be many sources of scrapped uranium components..

Under Philotechnics' proposals the usable material would be transferred to the recycling specialists Manufacturing Sciences Corporation.

Since 1985 MSc, bought by British Nuclear Fuels in 1997, has recycled 2,700 tonnes of DU into more than 70,000 products.'

If any CADU supporter has the time and desire to follow this up, please get in touch, as we'd love to pursue this further but lack the time just now.

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Another Report...

Joy Pagano, a member of the Noah Project at Manchester Reform Synagogue, and an activist who works closely with CADU, has compiled a report entitled 'The Tools of Genocide Against Iraq - Sanctions and Depleted Uranium Weapons'. It is available from Joy at 50 Sagars Rd, Handforth Cheshire, SK9 3EE, England, for £2.50 + 50pence p&p.

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Summary of FR Yugoslavia Report entitled 'The Consequences of NATO Bombing for the Environment in FR Yugoslavia'

The above report was published earlier this year by the Yugoslav Federal Ministry for Development, Science and the Environment. It deals with a number of different issues from oil and other pollutants, but below is just a summary of the chapter dealing with DU. (This does not represent CADU's views)

"During NATO air strikes against FR Yugoslavia, A-10A aircraft fired shells with depleted uranium-238 from 30mm guns. These aircraft were part of the formations that bombed facilities in FR Yugoslavia on March 30, 1999 in the broader Prizren region and later were part of several formations that bombed facilities in the zone south of the 44th parallel.
During the war, units from the Yugoslav Army's Atomic-Biological-Chemical Defence made radiological and chemical investigations of the regions in which A-10A aircraft operated . During this period the remains of munitions with depleted uranium were found on April 18, 1999 in the broader region of Bujanovac, on May 30, 1999 in the region of Cape Arza on the Lustice peninsula and later in the broader region of Vranje.

After the NATO aggression ended a more detailed investigation began along with the removal of the remains of munitions with depleted uranium. Evidence was found that NATO forces used these arms on 8 sites in FRY south of the 44th parallel. Seven sites were in the Republic of Serbia and one was in the Republic of Montenegro.

The remains of weapons with depleted uranium were take from the surface of the soil in the investigated regions and deposited in radioactive waste storage.

Contaminated soil was registered in each of the above regions. The co-ordinates of all restricted areas have been defined. Brief accounts of the contaminated soil were made.
It is difficult to establish precisely the amount of depleted uranium that contaminated these sites. Based on the reports of Yugoslav Army units and commands compiled during the war, the results of investigating regions under attack, and data about these types of weapon and how they are used it can be estimated that NATO forces fired around 3000-5000 shells which is the equivalent of around 1-1.5 tonnes of uranium 238 as a contaminating agent.
Based on investigations of projectile fragments and gamma spectrometric measurements with the identification of radionuclides, there is positive proof that NATO forces used API PGU-14/B munitions fired from A-10A aircraft from a GAU 8/A seven barrelled 30mm Gatling type gun.

We have several whole cores (tips) of missiles made of depleted uranium, their fragments and guide rings. Soil samples were taken from the sites; in addition to on-the-spot measurements, the entire material was analysed in the Vinca Institute for Nuclear Science, the Institute for Industrial medicine in Nis and the Military Hospital. The results of some samples showed indisputable contamination with the specific activity of U-238 going up to 235,000 Bq/kg.

The gamma dose upon contact with the tip was found to be 0.1 mGy/h. Based on values prescribed by the International Agency for Atomic Energy in Vienna, the analysed projectile fragments were classified as radioactive material whose usage in peacetime is only possible with the implementation of prescribed safety precautions.

"Bearing in mind the speed with which the weapons were fired and the estimated amounts used, the high probability of self-ignition and radioactivity measurements that were several hundred times greater than the natural content of uranium in the soil (10-50Bq/kg), it can be concluded that the use of these weapons led to contamination of the environment with long term consequences for both the environment and the local population" (from the report by the Vinca Institute for Nuclear Science) [the report goes on to give details of the possible health effects of DU]

The degree of danger is illustrated by the following example. In February 1980 a court order from the State of New York forced National Lead industries, a manufacturer of DU tips, to stop production since they had exceeded the prescribed monthly limits of discharging radioactive material into the air of 150 Ci. This value corresponds to 387g of DU. The tip of only one shell in the 30mm gun contains 298g of DU. In his letter to the Atomic Scientists' Bulletin, Mr Dietz asks if the authorities were worried about discharges that were the monthly equivalent of the particles in only 1 or 2 uranium projectiles, why wasn't the US government worried about the effects of tens of thousands of projectiles fired in the several days of the Gulf War?

The report goes on to express suspicion of NATO motives in that they bombed regions with a large percentage of Albanians, suggesting that they wanted to destroy future generations of Albanians as their growth rate is among the highest in the world. It also mentions that the US Army's radiology unit report suggested press releases should be issued to prevent possible negative international reaction to the use of DU due to public concerns. The report also offers the use of tungsten or titanium as an alternative, stating that the only reason to use DU was a cheap way of getting rid of waste. It also outlines ways in which "using arms with depleted uranium is a violation of the basic principles of international humanitarian law."

The report concludes: "The identification of regions where depleted uranium was used has enabled the definition of appropriate measures to clean up the consequences. Activities have been undertaken that considerably decrease the danger from contamination in these regions. Medical examinations were made of potentially most the endangered persons. A full-scale clean-up campaign is forthcoming. However, the decontamination of terrain contaminated by depleted uranium is very difficult. Considerable funds must be provided in order to remove the great amounts of contaminated soil and place it in special radioactive waste storage. This will require assistance from the international community."

Readers could write to their governments to encourage the provision of the assistance that this huge task will require.

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DU Prisoners

If you are a keen letter writer, but are feeling frustrated by the lack of positive response from the MoD or your MP, why not write to an activist in prison instead. Not only will you know your letter is greatly valued (even if you don't have a response), but supporting prisoners like this is one of the most crucial tasks if we are to keep our movement sustained in the long term.
The following four peace activists from the US are currently in jail for their anti -DU actions in December last year. Calling themselves the "Plowshares vs. Depleted Uranium", the four Catholic pacifists cut their way into the Warfield Air National Guard base in Maryland, and poured blood and hammered on two A-10 Warthog planes used to fire DU. The action was to protest against the United States' use of depleted uranium in recent wars against Iraq and Yugoslavia.

They were not permitted by the court to use arguments of international law or necessity, and their various expert witnesses were prevented from giving testimony. In a protest against what amounted to a legal gagging order, the four at one point turned their backs on the bench. Supporters in the public gallery became co-conspirators, when one of the defendants refused to say who drove the van which carried the protesters to t he base. A woman shouted out "I drove the van", and within minutes 100 others had joined in the cry.
The defendants were found guilty and given sentences ranging from 9 months to 30 months. Please write to them at the addresses below.

Susan Crane, #916-999, Correctional Institute for Women, PO Box 535, Jessup, MD 20794, United States

Liz Walz, #995-376, 200 Court House Court, Towson, MD 21204, United States

Philip Berrigan #292-139 and Rev. Steve Kelly #292-140 at the Roxbury Correctional Institute, 18701 Roxbury Rd, Hagerstown, MD 21746

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DU: nine parliamentary questions at EU Parliament

Thanks to Marco Saba of the European Network Against Depleted Uranium (ENADU) for the following information: Just in the period between 28 July 1999 and 11 May 2000, nine parliamentary questions were posed to the European Parliament on the issue of DU weapons, by a number of politicians.

The questions deal with the use of DU in civil aviation, but mainly focus on the use of DU in the Balkans conflict, proposing radioactive screening and clean up measures, and also deal with a report on the issue commissioned by the European Parliament itself. One of the questions on a different topic features below.

You can access the related full text in English by following this web link:
http://www.europarl.eu.int/questions/en/default.htm - Just put "uranium" in the word search field.
Or the text will be on Marco Saba's Ethical Environmental Observatory EU Website: http://enadu.i.am
If you do not have access to the web, call us at the CADU office and we can send you a print off.

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Video Games and DU

One of the EU Parliamentary questions mentioned above:
WRITTEN QUESTION E-1645/00 by Armando Cossutta (GUE/NGL) to the Commission (11 May 2000)
In the 'Starcraft' video game (marketed in Italy by Blizzard),which - like all too many products of this type - is basically a war game, players can use uranium 238 to upgrade their weapons. An entry on page 43 of the Italian manual reads: ' U238 ammunition research; this depleted uranium ammunition can improve the range of Gauss guns.'
A further entry on page 41 reads: 'Radiation: an enemy unit hit by one of these weapons will be bathed in highly radioactive particles capable of inflicting considerable damage (...) The radioactive field will create serious problems (...) Eventually radioactivity levels will decrease'.

Does the Commission believe that it is right for young people and little children to become accustomed to the idea of using nuclear weapons?

Does the Commission agree that it should take steps to prevent the concept of nuclear weapon use becoming commonplace in Europe's youth culture?

Does the Commission agree that it would be appropriate to stem the flood of violence to which young children are being exposed by video games?
Original language of question: Italian
Question not yet answered

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US VETERANS TO GO TO IRAQ TO REBUILD WATER-TREATMENT FACILITIES

United States military Veterans will go to Iraq to help rebuild water treatment facilities that were either destroyed by U.S. and British bombers, or rendered inoperable by the allies-led economic sanctions.

Veterans for Peace, Inc., a non-profit educational and humanitarian organisation with a long record of accomplishments since its creation in 1985, is proud to launch The Iraq Water Project. Veterans for Peace, Inc. is an organisation based in Washington, DC that holds 81 chapters nation-wide as well as several international affiliations. It is an accredited NGO (Non-Governmental Organisation) with the United Nations through their Department of Public Information.

Waterborne diseases account for most of the child fatalities caused by sanctions (at least 4,000 per month under the age of 5 years old). Under The Iraq Water Project, Veterans for Peace (VFP) will restore water-cleansing capabilities and provide 10 years of maintenance to four water-treatment facilities located in a suburb of Basrah (a major city in the Southeast) called Abul Khaseeb. This area has been ravaged by 2 wars, sanctions, and ongoing bombings. Furthermore, it has been virtually poisoned by the after-effects of depleted uranium weapons and ammunition use. The population in the region that will be serviced by The Iraq Water Project totals between 65,000-70,000 people. Funds to be raised for repair are between $110,000-$125,000.

In an unprecedented effort to further expose the devastating effects of US-led sanctions on Iraq, two teams of former US service people - Vietnam, Korean War, and WW II veterans, as well as many Gulf War veterans - will enter Iraq. They then will physically help rebuild these four water facilities.

It is the intent of The Iraq Water Project for the public to see US service veterans working alongside Iraqi engineers. The first team of veterans is scheduled to depart the US on October 2.

The Iraq Water Project is a partnership with Life for Relief and Development, another non-profit organisation. Life is the only relief organisation to have dual permission from both the Iraqi government and the US Treasury Department, to do relief work in Iraq. It is they who will work out the logistics inside Iraq.

The project is led by Co-Chairperson Fredy Champagne; VFP Board of Directors member and Vietnam veteran. In 1988, Mr. Champagne created a similar but larger program in 1988 called the Veterans - Vietnam Restoration Project (VVRP). The VVRP provided American veterans and others with opportunities to return to Vietnam for humanitarian service.
The VVRP operate(d) under the premise that returning to Vietnam, working directly on community projects and returning to former war zones where they served, helps veterans heal the legacy of war.

The other Co-Chairperson is Edilith Eckart, long-time noted peace activist and recent winner of Physicians for Social Responsibility's "Broad Street Pump" award. Ms. Eckart has been a long-standing member of VFP's Board of Directors. She now devotes most of her energies to The Iraq Water Project.

The Project Coordinator for The Iraq Water Project is accomplished New York City Playwright Michael John Carley. Mr. Carley is also VFP's United Nations NGO Representative, for whom he has worked in Bosnia and Iraq, among others, since 1991. Michael John Carley mjcarley@aol.com Phone: 718.398.5839

Contacts:
Fredy Champagne, Co-Chair, Iraq Water Project, P O Box 532,
Bayside, CA. 95524 Ph/Fax 707.943.1874
Member, Veterans for Peace, Inc. Board of Directors
www.veteransforpeace.org
Founder, Veterans - Vietnam Restoration Project
http://www.monitor.net/~jwtmls/v/

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NAS Study on Gulf War

The Institute of Medicine will release the report, Gulf War and Health. Volume 1. Depleted Uranium, Sarin, Pyridostigmine Bromide, and Vaccines, on Thursday, September 7th at 11 a.m. (EST) at a briefing for the public and press. The briefing will be held in the Lecture Room of the National Academy of Sciences Building, 2101 Constitution Avenue, NW, Washington, DC.

A live audio Webcast of the briefing will be available on the Internet at http://national-academies.org and you will be able to ask questions of the panelists during the briefing via email.

The Webcast requires free
RealPlayer software, available at http://www.real.com/player.
Additionally, the executive summary of the report will be available on the Internet through the National Academy Press website http://www.nap.edu.

Thanks to Paul Sullivan for posting this on the DU list

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Action at Featherstone

Readers may recall from previous editions of CADU news that the Royal Ordnance factory at Featherstone near Wolverhampton in the Midlands was the subject of some attention when a serious fire affected DU stored there. The factory is one of the few places in this country where DU is produced, and it is owned by British Aerospace - a company which has long been subject to opposition from concerned people due to its manufacture and sale of weapons to dictators and oppressive regimes.

A couple of months ago, a peace walk initiated by Trident Ploughshares (a campaign to openly and accountably disarm Trident nuclear submarines) and Nipponzan Myohoji (a Buddhist order with established peace pagodas), passed through the Midlands and decided to take action there. Cat Euler from CADU was there and reported the following:
'About 15 people, comprising the peace walkers, TP2000 and Buddhist people, plus some people from environmental groups and CADU, arrived at the Featherstone factory around 10.30 am. There were no security guards at the front gate, so the walkers just kept walking through the grounds until they arrived at the main office door, which they simply opened.

Once into the main factory offices, workers at the factory quickly gathered and several men told them to go outside, which they did peacefully. They sat on the ground outside the main door, while several other employees gathered at a nearby window to see what was going on. The Royal Ordnance Speciality Metals factory is in a very out-of-the-way rural location, near a prison, and I don't think they have had this much excitement there since the fire in February 1999, during which several pounds of DU scrap were burnt together with some nearby pallets.

A spokeswoman for the group asked to see the factory manager, but a shop foreman said he wasn't in, and that he was the highest-ranking person on site at that moment. He was very congenial and was glad to listen to the questions put to him about operations there, but, with a friendly smile on his face, repeated "I'm sorry we can't reply to that." "Have any surveys about workers' health been done here?" "I'm sorry we can't reply." "What calibre weapons do you produce here?" "I'm sorry we can't reply to that," "Do you make DU weapons here?" "I'm sorry, I can't tell you that," etc. etc. He agreed to take some literature and show it to other employees. One protester told him the main danger wasn't from the DU in the form he had it when machining it, but rather when it burned and became insoluble and inhalable. He quickly replied, "Yes, yes, it is pyrophoric, we know, we are very well briefed." At least that was a confirmation of sorts that they do deal with DU on the premises!

After about twenty minutes, seven police cars arrived to "deal with" the still seated 15 protesters, and announced that if people didn't leave the premises, they would begin to arrest. After carefully explaining what we were doing there to them, and handing out literature to some very interested policemen (they hadn't been informed about the radioactivity hazard of the fire either), the walkers proceeded peacefully on their way, and there were no arrests.

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Over 100 Puerto Ricans Jailed

More than one hundred Puerto Ricans are in a federal jail in Puerto Rico. They were arrested on a peaceful demonstration on a bombing range on Vieques, which has been contaminated by depleted uranium in munitions fired by the US Navy. They were initially released, but apprehended a week later (when journalists had left the island.)

The sixty year struggle to free Vieques (an island off mainland Puerto Rico) from regular US bombardment has already resulted in nearly 700 arrests on Vieques. Protest camps on the bombing range were first cleared on 4 May this year when 216 people were arrested. They were threatened with prosecution, up to ten years in prison and a $250,000.00 fine if they re-entered the bombing range.

Nevertheless since then many locals have remained hidden on the range or broken in through the fences. Their presence did not stop the Navy from dropping twelve dummy bombs on 8 May or from carrying out prolonged shelling on 10 May. These acts endangered the lives of local activists who are committed to purely peaceful protest.

Undeterred, locals continued to arrive in fishing boats. On 18 June a further 26 people were arrested following a symbolic action where local women placed black crosses at the ecumenical chapel. The crosses were a memorial for Vieques women who have died of cancers and other diseases that locals attribute to DU and other substances in munitions dropped on the bombing range.

Locals have criticised the limited commitment of the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission to clean up contamination by DU rounds at the base. They were outraged at the US refusal to accept responsibility for the far greater contamination of Kosovo, where 34,000 DU rounds were fired and Iraq, where 1,000,000 were fired.

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CADU International Conference on Depleted Uranium - 4- 5 November 2000

The Conference is looking like it will be an extremely useful and informative event. Contributors already confirmed include:

Ray Bristow, UK Gulf War Veteran
Dr Huda Ammash, geneticist, University of Baghdad,
Dr Doug Rokke, US Army Radiation specialist during the Gulf War
George Galloway MP
Dr Rosalie Bertell, renowned epidemiologist
Representative of Vinca Nuclear Institute in Serbia
Representative of Vieques Libre! Puerto Rico
Dr Chris Busby, UK consultant to Low Level Radiation Campaign
Karen Parker, international lawyer
Professor Malcolm Hooper, Chief Scientific Advisor to the UK Gulf War veterans,
Nikola Bozinovic, grassroots group 'DU in YU' Serbia
Jack Cohen Joppa, BAN DU
Grace Potorti- US anti DU campaigner
Damacio Lopez, International DU Study Group, New Mexico
Henk van der Keur, LAKA Foundation, Netherlands
Marco Saba - European Network Against Depleted Uranium
Enclosed in this edition of CADU news should be a leaflet for the conference. If you think you can distribute more, please get back to us, and we will send them immediately.
For those readers living in the Manchester area, we are looking for offers of accommodation - spare beds / camp beds, or just floor space for delegates.
For more information, contact Cat Euler, conference organiser at the CADU office.

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Iraq: DU clean up cost $375b

Iraqi spokespeople allege that $375 billion dollars will be needed to remedy environmental damage caused by the US and Britain's use of DU shells during the 1991 Gulf War. This was reported by the official INA news agency in July.

"The use of depleted uranium has caused pollution of the environment, soil, water and plant life and is at levels 10 times higher than normal", Iraq's UN ambassador Said Hassan was quoted as saying "repairing that damage would cost about $375 billion dollars".

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CADU Website

Hurray! Not only have we just installed a brand new computer system, but our Website is finally up and running. We still haven't got a system of updating it just yet, but we're working on it and will be contacting the people who have volunteered to help us do this very soon.
Have a look at our site at http://www.cadu.org.uk, and let us know what you think could be done to improve it.

Many thanks to Pete, our computer expert, for all his help

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CADU Petition

Another copy of the petition is enclosed, which we would like supporters to get signatures for. Many thanks to everyone who has sent in petitions - we received a fantastic response. Please photocopy more and distribute - if you don't have access to photocopy facilities, we can send you more. The petitions should be returned to us by the end of October, as we will be collecting them together to hand in during the international conference on 4th November (see inside).

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Page last updated: 6th December 2002