[ RadSafe ] Report on DU blown from Iraq to the UK another DU fantasy

Dawson, Fred Mr Fred.Dawson199 at mod.uk
Tue Feb 21 03:46:57 CST 2006

The Sunday Times reports that Chris Busby says that a  jump UK radiation
is due the use of depleted uranium ammunition blamed in Iraq

The Busby report can be found at http://www.llrc.org/aldermastrept.pdf

            RADIATION detectors in Britain recorded a fourfold increase
uranium levels in the atmosphere after the "shock and awe" bombing
against Iraq, according to a report.
            Environmental scientists who uncovered the figures through 
freedom of information laws say it is evidence that depleted uranium
the shells was carried by wind currents to Britain.

            Government officials, however, say the sharp rise in uranium

detected by radiation monitors in Berkshire was a coincidence and
came from local sources.

            The results from testing stations at the Atomic Weapons 
Establishment (AWE) in Aldermaston and four other stations within a
radius were obtained by Chris Busby, of Liverpool University's
department of 
human anatomy and cell biology.

            Each detector recorded a significant rise in uranium levels 
during the Gulf war bombing campaign in March 2003. The reading from a
in Reading was high enough for the Environment Agency to be alerted.

            Busby, who has advised the government on radiation and is a 
founder of Green Audit, the environmental consultancy, believes "uranium

aerosols" from Iraq were widely dispersed in the atmosphere and blown

            "This research shows that rather than remaining near the
as claimed by the military, depleted uranium weapons contaminate both
and whole populations hundreds to thousands of miles away," he said.

            The Ministry of Defence (MoD) countered that it was
depleted uranium could have travelled so far. Radiation experts also
that other environmental sources were more likely to blame.

            The "shock and awe" campaign was one of the most devastating

assaults in modern warfare. In the first 24-hour period more than 1,500 
bombs and missiles were dropped on Baghdad.

            During the conflict A10 "tankbuster" planes - which use 
munitions containing depleted uranium - fired 300,000 rounds. The 
substance - dubbed a "silver bullet" because of its ability to pierce
tank armour - is controversial because of its potential effect on human 
health. Critics say it is chemically toxic and can cause cancer, and
doctors reported a marked rise in cancer cases after it was used in the 
first Gulf conflict.

            The American and British governments say depleted uranium is

relatively harmless, however. The Royal Society, the UK's academy of 
science, has also said the risk from depleted uranium is "very low" for 
soldiers and people in a conflict zone.

            Busby's report shows that within nine days of the start of
Iraq war on March 19, 2003, higher levels of uranium were picked up on
sites in Berkshire. On two occasions, levels exceeded the threshold at
the Environment Agency must be informed, though within safety limits.
report says weather conditions over the war period showed a consistent
of air from Iraq northwards.

            Brian Spratt, who chaired the Royal Society's report, cast
on depleted uranium as a source but said it could have come from natural

uranium in the massive amounts of soil kicked up by shock and awe.

            Other experts said local environmental sources, such as a
station, were more likely at fault. The Environment Agency said
detectors at 
other sites did not record a similar increase, which suggested a local 

            A MoD spokesman said the uranium was of a "natural origin"
there was no evidence that depleted uranium had reached Britain from

Fred Dawson

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