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U.S. OR ISRAELI ATTACK ON IRAN COULD CONTAMINATE MIDDLE EAST

Infowars.com | January 5, 2006
Sherwood Ross

If the U.S. or Israel attack Iranian nuclear power facilities "huge amounts
of radioactive material will be lofted into the air to contaminate the
people of Iran and surrounding countries," an eminent international
authority on nuclear weapons warns.

"This fallout will induce cancers, leukemia, and genetic disease in these
populations for years to come, both a medical catastrophe and a war crime of
immense proportions," Dr. Helen Caldicott writes in her new book, "Nuclear
Power Is Not The Answer," published by The New Press.

Dr. Caldicott said the Pentagon has met with its Israeli counterparts "to
discuss the participation of Israel in plans to attack Iran" even though
President Bush said "this notion that the United States is getting ready to
attack Iran is simply ridiculous."

Citing the accidental meltdown of the Chernobyl nuclear power plant in the
Ukraine in April, 1986, as an example of what can happen when radioactivity
is released, she termed it a "medical catastrophe (that) will continue to
plague much of Russia, Belarus, the Ukraine, and Europe for the rest of
time." Between 5,000 and 10,000 people have died prematurely to date, she
said.

Between 1986 and 2001, Belarus suffered 8,358 cases of thyroid cancer as a
result of the Chernobyl meltdown, and most of the afflicted have had their
thyroids surgically removed, leaving them dependent on thyroid medications
for the rest of their lives, said Dr. Caldicott, a physician and
anti-nuclear activist. She writes the areas of Europe, and its populations,
afflicted by the Chernobyl accident will suffer from its impact "for
thousands of years."

Dr. Caldicott noted Israel, along with Pakistan and India, are "rogue
nations, outlaws who choose not to abide by international law" for their
refusal to sign the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty(NPT). "Understandably,
the Arab states resent the IAEA's intrusions on Iran, as the United States
accuses it of a covert but un-proven nuclear weapons program, whereas
Israel, also a covert nuclear state but a close U.S. ally, receives no such
scrutiny."

"It is unwise and dangerous for Israel to possess a nuclear arsenal," she
pointed out, as "such weapons are highly provocative for Israel's Arab
neighbors" and their presence "actively encourages Arab states to build
their own."

One or two nuclear bombs landing on the tiny Israeli nation would obliterate
it," Dr. Caldicott said. "Or, conversely, if a large conventional weapon
landed on Dimona (the Negev Nuclear Research Center), the ensuing meltdown
would kill millions of people."

Dr. Caldicott said "the Bush administration has adopted some very
provocative and dangerous policies --- all of them in direct violation of
the Non-Proliferation Treaty---which inevitably have led and will continue
to lead to the proliferation of nuclear weapons in other countries."

She charged Bush has drafted a revised plan allowing military commanders to
request presidential approval to use nuclear weapons to preempt an attack by
a nation or terrorist group deemed to be planning to use WMD.

"The 'revised plan' reflects a preemptive nuclear strategy first enunciated
by the White House in 2002. Had this strategy been in place before the
invasion of Iraq, a nuclear attack could have been justified to 'take out'
Iraq's imaginary WMD," Dr. Caldicott wrote.

Under the NPT, Dr. Caldicott said, Iran is "perfectly entitled to pursue a
uranium enrichment program for peaceful purposes" and she noted in the past
"Iran was actively encouraged by the United States to develop its own
nuclear power program."

She quoted Tony Benn, a former British M.P., stating that when he was
secretary of state for energy "enormous pressure was put on me...to agree to
sell nuclear power stations" to the Shah of Iran, "who had been put on the
throne by the U.S." Benn said the pressure came from the Atomic Energy
Authority and U.S. manufacturer Westinghouse, "who were anxious to promote
their own design of reactor."

Dr. Caldicott said, "Having initially encouraged Iran to develop nuclear
capabilities, the United States now has plans to bomb Iran with nuclear
weapons for doing so."

Dr. Caldicott not only opposes development, stockpiling, and deployment of
nuclear weapons but the use of nuclear plants for supplying energy as well
on grounds they are inherently dangerous -- as meltdowns at Chernobyl and
Three Mile Island in the U.S. on March 28, 1979, demonstrated.

Additionally, she contends the extraction of the world's dwindling supply of
uranium ore for reactors is very costly and contributes greatly to the
greenhouse effect, just the opposite of the nuclear power industry's
contention nuclear plants are environmentally friendly.

 

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