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#1: Re: I'm considering being a vegetarian...

Posted on 2006-06-11 15:27:28 by usual suspect

&quot;pearl&quot; &lt;<a href="mailto:utterlydense&#64;" target="_blank">utterlydense&#64;</a>&gt; wrote:

&gt; The US Department of Defense has more than 1.1 billion pounds
&gt; of nuclear waste in storage from 50 years of nuclear weapons
&gt; production and nuclear power plants.

Two separate issues, of which the DoD is only responsible for the weapons part of it. Nuclear power plants are NOT under DoD -- NEVER have been. The Atomic Energy Commission (AEC), which is now the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), was the oversight agency Congress established to promote nuclear energy in the US and to regulate its safety.

&gt; The government, hemmed
&gt; in by public opposition, health and environmental movements, is
&gt; always trying to find new &quot;acceptable&quot; ways to dispose of it. It
&gt; has apparently found one. Billions of dollars allotted to the
&gt; Environmental Restoration branch of the Department of Energy
&gt; for cleaning up nuclear waste sites is now being used to ship
&gt; nuclear waste free of charge to munitions manufacturers all over
&gt; the world to be &quot;recycled&quot; into weapons.

Such twittery, but no surprise coming from someone who still insists polar fountains are terrestrial in nature and evidence that the earth is hollow (i.e., that the fountains are light coming from the Lemurians beneath Mount Shasta)! You are so fucking daft, Lesley!

U-238, which is both the depleted AND natural uranium isotope, isn't very fissile and is weakly radioactive. But here's the big ugly fly in your ointment: because U-238 isn't fissile and because it's almost twice as dense (hard) as lead, it's been used in weapons -- tank busters, etc. -- long before the US DoD had such a surplus of spent fuel to &quot;recycle.&quot;
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Moreover, there is scant evidence of danger to troops in the use of DU weapons. The biggest threat is to troops and civilians who are ingest SIGNIFICANT amounts through soil or water. Even then, it is known to affect very few individuals:
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&gt; Depleted uranium is a highly toxic

Not much more so than any other heavy metal.

&gt; and radioactive

The adverb &quot;highly&quot; is absolutely inappropriate in context of U-238.

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#2: Re: I'm considering being a vegetarian...

Posted on 2006-06-12 12:45:44 by pearl

&quot;chico chupacabra&quot; &lt;<a href="mailto:support&#64;our.troops" target="_blank">support&#64;our.troops</a>&gt; wrote in message news:<a href=";our.troops..." target="_blank">;our.troops...</a>

&gt; U-238, which is both the depleted AND natural uranium isotope, isn't very fissile and is weakly radioactive. But here's the big
ugly fly in your ointment: because U-238 isn't fissile

'What happens when DU round hits a target?

Apart from purely mechanical, DU ammunition has extremely
dangerous radiological effect on human as well as on environment
in all. To learn this, it is necessary to know what happens with the
sting (penetrator) once it hits solid target, such as tank or concrete
structure is. The penetrator disrupts into:

Large shrapnel ( tenths of grams )

Small parts ( grams)

Large particles ( over 10 micrometers ) and

Aerosolized particles ( uranium dust ) produced by burning

First three types of particles are solid depleted uranium itself
and, being relatively heavy, drop in the close area ( 10 meters )
around impact spot. These particles, apart being radioactive
are also very toxic and may intensively react with fluids around
them - primarily water - contaminating such surface and
underground waters as well as soil itself.

In case of direct hit, the high temperatures, of about 1200 oC,
are developed on the impact spot. Since uranium burns on
700 oC, most of the penetrator (50-70%) combusts into uranium
dioxide and uranium trioxide. One hundred grams of uranium
burns out into about 1,000 grams of fine, black uranium dust.
Inhaling just 0.002 grams might be fatal to human health.

Because of immediate cooling, fine uranium mist is formed.
Particles do not exceed 2.5 micrometers in diameter and
essentially have ceramic form, in other words, they are not
soluble and stay unchanged for good. Most of the particles
fall on the ground in the closest surrounding of the impact
spot. In the distances that exceed 200 m, their number is
smaller although they may be detected even tenths of
kilometers from the impact spot because, in respect to their
very small size, they can be easily moved by wind. This only
underlines high danger of contamination which can be spread
in very wide areas.

Is toxic impact of DU on human helath more dangerous than
radiological one?

Dangerous effect of exposure to depleted uranium could be
inducted by outside or inside radiation. Outside radiation is
significant when the whole sting or its parts are close to
humans. If such parts are in direct contact to skin, because
of the alpha and beta radiation, it could be burned. ..

Inside radiation is, however, difficult to avoid and is much
more dangerous. Basic threat appears when inhaling or
congesting DU particles. Once in taken, uranium endangers
all tissues it encounters, primarily lungs, liver, kidneys but
also other organs, such as spinal content tissue, etc. Inhaled
uranium dust has soluble and insoluble particles. Soluble
particles are toxic and they poison the organism while the
insoluble parts are more dangerous because of their
radioactivity. Increased risk to cancer is about 5% per sievert
what means that someone that has been exposed to DU close
to impact spot might have increased risk to cancer from 20%

Tiny uranium parts penetrate soil into underground water
contaminating, such, the whole food chain on a long-term
basis. DU half decay time is 4.5 billion years what practically
means that, once spread, it stays in our environment forever.
The most endangered are soldiers and individuals that were
close to impact spots at very attack. It is not excluded that
such persons might have inhaled hundreds of grams of DU.
It is quite possible that people working on mending damages
after bombing, inhale additional quantities of DU particles.
This because dust is disturbed by people, vehicles or wind.
Equivalent doses are, in such cases, less (tenths of micro
sieverts ) but not less dangerous.

If the target is missed, just a little percent of DU will become
insoluble dust. Solid uranium will be on the surface or under
it where it will react with water. Depending on geological
situation, there is high risk on contamination of underground
water. Detailed examinations must be exercised for every
particular case.
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'Depleted uranium is a highly toxic and radioactive byproduct of
the uranium enrichment process needed in nuclear reactors and
the manufacture of nuclear weapons. Natural uranium, with a
half-life of 4.5 billion years, is comprised of three isotopes: 99.27%
U238, 0.72% U235, and .0057% U234. DU is uranium with the
U235 isotope-the fissionable material-reduced from 0.7% to
0.2%-thus, &quot;depleted.&quot; (3) The Pentagon says DU is relatively
harmless, emitting &quot;only&quot; 60% the radiation of nondepleted
uranium. But Dr. Ernest Sternglass, Jay Gould, and Benjamin
Goldman have shown that even low-level radiation emitted
during the &quot;normal&quot; functioning of nuclear power plants creates
havoc with people's immune system as well as the surrounding
environment. (4) And, according to independent scientists,
&quot;a DU antitank round outside its metal casing can emit as much
radiation in one hour as 50 chest X-rays.&quot; (5) A tank driver
receives a radiation dose of 0.13 rem/hr to his or her head from
overhead DU armor (6) which may seem like a very low dose.
However, after 32 continuous days, or 64 12-hour days, the
amount of radiation a tank driver receives to his head will
exceed the Nuclear Regulatory Commission's annual standard
for public whole-body exposure to man-made sources of radiation.
(7) Unfortunately, US tank crews were not monitored for radiation
exposure during the Gulf War. (8)

When properly encased, DU gives off very little radiation, the
Pentagon says. But DU becomes much more radioactive when
it burns. And when it is fired, it combusts on impact. &quot;As much
as 70% of the material is released as a radioactive and highly
toxic dust that can be inhaled or ingested and then trapped in
the lungs or kidneys.&quot; (9)

Leaving more than 600,000 pounds of depleted uranium
scattered throughout the region, by (the first Gulf) war's end
the US had turned the Gulf area into a deadly radioactive grid,
affecting not only US soldiers but hundreds of thousands,
perhaps millions, of people who live and work in the Gulf.
A single molecular particle of depleted uranium will subject
an individual to radiation at a level 800 times what is permitted
by federal regulations for external exposure. (10) As DU-artillery
shells heat up, the uranium becomes aerosolized, releasing high
amounts of radioactivity, not the low amounts the military claims
for &quot;normal&quot; depleted uranium. Clouds of deadly uranium
dioxide swept over large areas of Iraq and Kuwait, devastating
agriculture, soil, and water. (11)

Radioactivity inflicts severe damage on the total environment
while weakening immune systems, destroying the kidneys, lungs,
bones, and liver, and rendering the human body susceptible to
all sorts of diseases that a healthy individual might have been
able to ward off. Iraqi children continue to find uranium-coated
shells; they have been coming down with all sorts of deadly
illnesses associated with radiation poisoning. Is it any wonder
that many symptoms of Gulf War Syndrome are so similar to
radiation sickness?
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