18th January 2001

Depleted Uranium Watch

For Every DU, There is a Lid

Piotr Bein, piotr.bein@imag.net

Vancouver, Canada
January 18, 2001

Cover-ups are amazing demonstrations of intellectual ingenuity …and stupidity …of the order-givers, their agents …and the audience. An imperative to hide the truth drives the guilty and their operatives – Special Operations, Public Affairs, Psychological Operations (PsyOp), Spokesmen, Official Media – into amazing thought contraptions and staged events that are supposed to “convince” the audience about the perpetrator’s point of view.

The mechanisms of cover-up and deception are simple. They draw profusely on techniques described by Hitler in “Mein Kampf” and perfected by his information minister Göbbels during Nazi rise to power and then Nazi genocide on Slavs, Jews, Gypsies and Jehovah Witnesses.

Information warfare principles are laid out for information warriors in US Department of Defence (DoD) and other military manuals. Information warfare of DoD targets foreign nations and groups, including foreign governments. DoD actions “convey and/or deny selected information and indicators to foreign audiences to influence their emotions, motives, and objective reasoning; and to intelligence systems and leaders at all levels.”

NATO PsyOp are directed to “enemy, friendly and neutral audiences in order to influence attitudes and behaviour affecting the achievement of political and military objectives.” No wonder the military and media of NATO member countries act like clones of Pentagon. Open critique comes mainly from outside the Pact, where political and military objectives are different, but not necessarily better.

In 1999 texts about DU in the Persian Gulf and the Balkans, first published in the Polish independent environmental bi-weekly “Zielone Brygady” (Green Brigades), this author described the cover-ups that were already obvious at the time. Looking ahead in follow up chapters about Balkan DU (www.zb.eco.pl/internet/nato/zuran1.htm, and www.zb.eco.pl/internet/nato/zuran2.htm) in a Polish book about NATO famous mission in the region, the author tried to predict what excuses NATO would come up with when pressed on the DU health risk issue.

How accurate he was, please judge for yourself. If NATO is so predictable, it does not say much about their propaganda, which costs us a lot of tax money. The subtitles below are translations from the author’s predictions, followed by comments on what happened subsequently.

Understate the amount of DU weapons used in the 1999 bombing campaign and previously in Bosnia.

NATO said 10 tons in Kosovo, Yugoslavia and Russia said "more". NATO said about 3 tons in Bosnia. Who trusts NATO anymore?

Censor information appearing in mass media.

There is too much evidence in the barrage of recent press agency dispatches. Examples: military spokesmen appearing on TV and quoted in the press, compulsory mantra about Pentagon stance on risk-free DU. I write more about it in the other articles on DU-WATCH.

Blame "Milosevic" and “his” secret manufacture, storage and use of biological and chemical weapons.

I underestimated the intelligence of Special Operations. Hungarian “intelligence sources” said in January 2001 that Milosevic planted DU nuke and chemical pollution while NATO was carrying out its humanitarian mission in Kosovo, and earlier in Iraq and Bosnia.

“Milosevic” was resurrected by the Portuguese Army Chief of Staff, General Barrento, who accused the anti-DU journalists and the father of dead KFOR soldier, Hugo Paulino, of being on the payroll of the pro-Milosevic forces and of betraying their fatherland.

Blackmail old and new Yugoslav government to withhold the truth.

Could it be true for both old and new governments in Beograd? Patricia Axelrod's August 1999 report indicates Milosevic government might have been covering up DU casualties. De-contamination units operated during NATO bombing campaign both in Kosovo and in Serbia proper. If the Yugoslav authorities knew about the DU contamination and risk, why are there no reports about Yugoslav Army and civilian DU casualties from Serbia outside Kosovo where the national authorities were not impeded? The information is likely suppressed, if Vinca Nuclear Institute’s Snezana Pavlovic appeared recently in a photo with radioactive DU bullets and a big question, “Where are the Serbian casualties?”

Belittle the subject, change emphasis, dilute, deny.

Examples are too many to mention. If you didn’t find any, please read my articles about PsyOp and cover-ups of DU scams from the 1980s to date. If you have more time, go to archives of recent DU debates on informed forums like www.stopnato.org.uk/du-watch/. Most of the propaganda articles are featured there, along with de-bunking.

Most amazing are attempts to play with words. "Depleted" is used by the propaganda to highlight "neutral" nature of toxic and radioactive DU. Polish Newspeak artists tried to introduce the term "disarmed uranium" for DU. But the silver metal is more than "neutral": soldiers are safer against radiation from space in a tank made of DU than outside, on the battlefield.

High density of DU is exploited to assert that the dust is too heavy to go anywhere, if someone does not believe that DU "evaporated" and "disappeared" in the first place. When DU stays where it was deposited, the dose is calculated over the area of the whole province, instead of over several thousand times smaller area that was actually contaminated by NATO. If you are still unconvinced, they tell you that DU "saves lives" of soldiers, because it knocks out enemy armour from a "safe" distance.

The propaganda plays with general public ignorance of the complex physical and radiological properties of DU. From just one nebulous and uniform "depleted, spent uranium" material called U-238, DU is suddenly revealing its highly radioactive and toxic content of uranium 234, 235, 236 and plutonium. The military spokesmen love to talk like US Army medical expert Colonel David Lam, who said, "Smoking two cigarettes a day or having a series of bowel X-rays can cause more radiation exposure than an hour of deliberate handling of a depleted uranium penetrator round." The civilians (and soldiers) don't handle any rounds. They were often not even close to A-10 plane or DU tank, but they breathed the contaminated air or ingested a tiny DU particle with water or food.

Manipulate reports and scientific evidence, including those from previous campaigns that used DU.

A 1999 RAND "report" was designed to divert attention to some pills soldiers in the Gulf War received to stay protected in combat from a nerve chemical. UN after-war reports on war pollution in Kosovo showed everything, except the truth. One report said there was no risk of DU in Kosovo and the population could go on living as usual.

NATO was rather modest about the composition of the DU metal alloy. Instead of being as harmless as a "handful of dirt from your backyard," the DU turns out to contain dangerously radioactive as well as toxic elements. Maybe this is what NATO meant that the majority component of DU, uranium 238 is "not a health concern": relatively speaking, the other components are, so U-238 risks fade by comparison. NATO told the truth, just not the whole truth.

“Impartial” groups were quick to jump on the bandwagon of the criminals. World Health Organization expeditiously compared DU-like illness incidence in Kosovo before and after NATO bombing. Statistics are incomparable, because it is a completely different population in the province today. 300 or 400 thousand opponents of Albanian extremism and separatism left Kosovo and many more illegally migrated from Albania. Pre-1999 Kosovo Albanians boycotted the Yugoslav state health care system under Milosevic, so statistics are fragmentary.

The criminals are “investigating” their own crimes. After two weeks of mounting controversy, the alliance said in mid-January 2001 that its chief medical officers compared evidence and found no serious health risk from DU weapons. The “evidence” includes all the DU-related cases of dead and sick soldiers that were hidden from public scrutiny by the military. There are thousands of them in NATO countries and much more around NATO DU battlefields, shooting ranges and production plants.

Blame other causes, such as pre-war or general pollution.

All kinds of excuses reminiscent of post-Gulf War “investigations” appeared in statements defending DU. Chemicals in the wood that the soldiers supposedly handled, benzene with which they allegedly clean their guns, natural asbestos deposits and lead contamination of Kosovo so far appeared to divert attention from DU. Admittedly, inoculations and pills did not enter the stage yet.

It would undoubtedly help the propaganda, if Milosevic set Kosovo oil wells and refineries on fire, squashed a rebellion of Kosovo Albanians with chemical-biological weapons, or if the population and soldiers received anthrax inoculations. Unfortunately, burning Pancevo and Novi Sad refineries could not be invoked, because “Slobo” did not set them on fire. Even if he did, the wind blew the smoke the other way.

Associated Press dispatch from Kosovo on January 15th, 2001, is food for thought. Lead dust from Trepca mines, untreated sewage, fine dust from a cement plant, and toxic metals from neglected factories are invoked, as if to compete for the US$1 million fund for environmental concerns in the province. The advocacy would be honest, if the article did not appear in the middle of the DU debate and if it did not refer to alleged increased lead levels that served to justify a military takeover of the Trepca mines by KFOR for Mr. Soros several months ago.

Next step: blame general, non-DU pollution for all illness and death from DU in Kosovo. Servile Associated Press introduced that kind of pollution to the gullible Western reader on January 15th, 2001. Colonel David Lam from the US Army already announced this tactics, “If there is in fact a health risk resulting from services in the Balkans, I think we need to look at all possible causes, such as other pollutants and hazards, and not focus only on DU.”

Expect more to follow soon. “Other factor than DU” strategy was adopted after the Gulf War and will most likely be pursued by Pentagon and NATO in the Balkan case.

At least partial blame on DU used by the Yugoslav forces and by the KLA.

When would this one be coming to your TV screen and local paper?

(copyleft: reproduce and acknowledge the source)

This page: http://www.stopnato.org.uk/du-watch/bein/lid.htm


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