View Full Version : Disturbing story of Fallujah's birth defects

03-04-2010, 07:04 PM
BBC News - Disturbing story of Fallujah's birth defects (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/middle_east/8548961.stm)

Disturbing story of Fallujah's birth defects

By John Simpson
BBC News, Fallujah

Six years after the intense fighting began in the Iraqi town of Fallujah between US forces and Sunni insurgents, there is a disturbingly large number of cases of birth defects in the town.

Fallujah is less than 40 miles (65km) from Baghdad, but it can still be dangerous to get to.

As a result, there has been no authoritative medical investigation, certainly by any Western team, into the allegations that the weapons used by the Americans are still causing serious problems.

The Iraqi government line is that there are only one or two extra cases of birth defects per year in Fallujah, compared with the national average.

But in the impressive new Fallujah General Hospital, built with American aid, we found a paediatric specialist, Dr Samira al-Ani, who told us that she saw two or three new cases every day.

Most of them, she said, exhibited cardiac problems.

When asked what the cause was, she said: "I am a doctor. I have to be scientific in my talk. I have nothing documented. But I can tell you that year by year, the number [is] increasing."

The specialist, like other medical staff at the hospital, seemed nervous about talking too openly about the problem.

They were well aware that what they said went against the government version, and we were told privately that the Iraqi authorities are anxious not to embarrass the Americans over the issue.

There are no official figures for the incidence of birth defects in Fallujah.

The US military authorities are absolutely correct when they say they are not aware of any official reports indicating an increase in birth defects in Fallujah - no official reports exist.

But it is impossible, as a visitor, not to be struck by the terrible number of cases of birth defects there.

We heard many times that officials in Fallujah had warned women that they should not have children.

We went to a clinic for the disabled, and were given details of dozens upon dozens of cases of children with serious birth defects.
Baby girl with birth defect
Dozens of children were being treated at a clinic for the disabled

One photograph I saw showed a newborn baby with three heads.

While we were at the clinic, people kept arriving with children who were suffering major problems - a little girl with only one arm, several children who were paralysed, and another girl with a spinal condition so bad I asked my cameraman not to film her.

At the clinic we were told that the worst problems were to be found in the neighbourhood of al-Julan, near the river.

This was the heart of the resistance to the Americans during the two major offensives of April and September 2004, and was hit constantly by bombs and shells.

We went to a house where three children, all under six, were suffering from birth defects.

Two boys were partially paralysed, and their sister clearly had serious brain damage.

Like all the other parents we spoke to, their mother had no doubt that the American attacks were responsible.

Outside, a man who had heard we were there had brought his four-year-old daughter to show us. She had six fingers on each hand, and six toes on each foot.

She was also suffering from a number of other serious health problems. The father told us that the house where they still lived had been hit by an American shell during the fighting in 2004.

There may well be a link with drinking-water, especially in al-Julan.

After the fighting was over, the rubble from the town was bulldozed into the river bank, and most people in this area get their water from the river.

The true causes of the problem, and the question of the effects of the weapons the Americans used, can be resolved only by a proper independent inquiry by medical experts.

And until the security situation in and around Fallujah improves, it will be difficult to carry that out.

kwame k
03-04-2010, 07:11 PM
One photograph I saw showed a newborn baby with three heads.


Holy shit, what the fuck are we putting in our bombs.....reason 1000 why this was an unjust war.

03-04-2010, 07:29 PM
No WMD's, no proven connection to the events of 911......LOTS OF OIL!

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7 fucking years and we're still there.... absolute bullshit!

kwame k
03-04-2010, 07:33 PM
Other than making Dick Cheney millions and billions for the other war profiteers, I challenge anyone to tell me what that war was over.

Oil.....oil prices are higher today than at the start of the fucking war.

Profits for companies Cheney and Rumsfeld have a vested interest in.......3,000%.

03-04-2010, 07:34 PM
It's the Kentucky of the Mideast

kwame k
03-04-2010, 07:48 PM
It's the Kentucky of the Mideast

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03-05-2010, 01:21 AM
I'll be here all week. Try the Veal...

03-05-2010, 01:25 AM
I'll be here all week. Try the Veal...

How Dare You,Dont Steal My Line.:D

Nitro Express
03-05-2010, 02:31 AM
It's the depleted uranium. It's used in penetrator rounds because it's a dense metal but it's also radioactive and when it impacts something it scatters all over the place. Not only are the battle areas contaminated that stuff gets in the atmosphere and eventually spreads around the world. Of course the highest density will be where the shells and bombs were used.

03-05-2010, 06:55 AM
Phosphorus is bad news too.

03-05-2010, 08:31 AM

Holy shit, what the fuck are we putting in our bombs.....reason 1000 why this was an unjust war.

There could be money to be made though.

I was thinking in setting up a company to export hats...

kwame k
03-05-2010, 08:38 AM
Maybe you could hire some of those kids as sales reps.......you know the old saying, three heads are better than one ;)

Sgt Schultz
03-05-2010, 01:45 PM
Studies in 2005 and earlier have concluded that DU ammunition has no measurable detrimental health effects.
LINK (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Depleted_uranium#Studies_indicating_negligible_eff ects)

A 1999 literature review conducted by the Rand Corporation stated: "No evidence is documented in the literature of cancer or any other negative health effect related to the radiation received from exposure to depleted or natural uranium, whether inhaled or ingested, even at very high doses," and a RAND report authored by the U.S. Defense department undersecretary charged with evaluating DU hazards considered the debate to be more political than scientific.

A 2001 oncology study concluded that "the present scientific consensus is that DU exposure to humans, in locations where DU ammunition was deployed, is very unlikely to give rise to cancer induction". Former NATO Secretary General Lord Robertson stated in 2001 that "the existing medical consensus is clear. The hazard from depleted uranium is both very limited, and limited to very specific circumstances".

A 2002 study from the Australian defense ministry concluded that “there has been no established increase in mortality or morbidity in workers exposed to uranium in uranium processing industries... studies of Gulf War veterans show that, in those who have retained fragments of depleted uranium following combat related injury, it has been possible to detect elevated urinary uranium levels, but no kidney toxicity or other adverse health effects related to depleted uranium after a decade of follow-up.” Pier Roberto Danesi, then-director of the IAEA Seibersdorf +Laboratory, stated in 2002 that "There is a consensus now that DU does not represent a health threat".

The International Atomic Energy Agency reported in 2003 that, "based on credible scientific evidence, there is no proven link between DU exposure and increases in human cancers or other significant health or environmental impacts," although "Like other heavy metals, DU is potentially poisonous. In sufficient amounts, if DU is ingested or inhaled it can be harmful because of its chemical toxicity. High concentration could cause kidney damage." The IAEA concluded that while depleted uranium is a potential carcinogen, there is no evidence that it has been carcinogenic in humans.

A 2005 study by Sandia National Laboratories’ Al Marshall used mathematical models to analyze potential health effects associated with accidental exposure to depleted uranium during the 1991 Gulf War. Marshall’s study concluded that the reports of cancer risks from DU exposure are not supported by veteran medical statistics, but Marshall did not consider reproductive health effects.

03-05-2010, 01:48 PM
I blame CO2

03-05-2010, 02:27 PM
I blame BushCO


kwame k
03-05-2010, 02:52 PM
There wasn't any Gulf War Syndrome either and they basically neglected our own people over that.

So I have no doubt that this will get glossed over, too.

Nitro Express
03-05-2010, 10:53 PM
The use of DU in munitions is controversial because of questions about potential long-term health effects.[4] Normal functioning of the kidney, brain, liver, heart, and numerous other systems can be affected by uranium exposure, because in addition to being weakly radioactive, uranium is a toxic metal.[5] It is weakly radioactive and remains so because of its long half-life (4.468 billion years for uranium-238). The aerosol produced during impact and combustion of depleted uranium munitions can potentially contaminate wide areas around the impact sites or can be inhaled by civilians and military personnel.[6] During a three week period of conflict in 2003 in Iraq, 1,000 to 2,000 tonnes of DU munitions were used, mostly in cities.[7]
The actual acute and chronic toxicity of DU is also a point of medical controversy. Multiple studies using cultured cells and laboratory rodents suggest the possibility of leukemogenic, genetic, reproductive, and neurological effects from chronic exposure.[4] A 2005 epidemiology review concluded: "In aggregate the human epidemiological evidence is consistent with increased risk of birth defects in offspring of persons exposed to DU."[8] The World Health Organization states that no consistent risk of reproductive, developmental, or carcinogenic effects have been reported in humans.[9][10] However, the objectivity of this report has been called into question.[11]

From Wikipedia

03-09-2010, 02:58 AM

Holy shit, what the fuck are we putting in our bombs.....reason 1000 why this was an unjust war.

Uh, how about all that manhandling of lead by enemy combatants? They probably loaded their rifles and ate with the same unwashed hands.

Lead, cadmium plating, depleted uranium.. the worst known cause of metals induced birth defects is mercury. That's the stuff you look for high levels of in the blood initially.