depleted uranium weapons

Les Schaffer schaffer at
Wed Jul 16 14:06:33 MDT 2003

Andy Coates:

> I agree with DM that Perleman's dismissal betrays ignorance of the
> question.

i'm more forgiving i guess. physics can be hard, so it takes people a
few ummmm exposures to get the details right. he mainly had the
physics of the alpha impacting skin tissue wrong, but he did
acknowledge there is trouble once in the lungs.

> In the first post Les notes that he has not seen an attempt at a
> dose response calculation for exposure to DU.  The nuclear physicist
> Len Dietz has been working on this.  Here are his calculations:

excellent, this is exactly the calculation i had in mind. note that it
is an extremely straightforward back-of-the-envelope type of thing,
something anyone in the military sciences COULD do in their
sleep. that this type of thing is NOT quoted in the literature
claiming DU not harmful thus makes that literature seriously suspect.

> Subsequent studies showed that radioactive particles of depleted
> uranium were not only aerosolized (in particles small enough to
> penetrate to human alveoli)

any idea what were the particle sizes?

> but released widely in the Albany-Schenectady-Troy area (up to 26
> miles (40 km) away from the plant).  Today the National Lead site
> remains a "superfund clean-up site", closed by the government in
> 1980.  The effects of exposure are not the subject of any public
> epidemiology.  The workers at that plant have not even been granted
> access to their own medical files from the examinations conducted at
> the time of the plant closing.  (People from this community are
> among my patients.)

have you seen higher incidences of lung cancer or other lung problems?
or is your sampling too small?

>  he pointed to the work he has published with Asaf Durokovic which
>  looks at radioactive isotopes collected in 24-hour urine samples
>  from Gulf War vets.

would stuff in urine be from swallowing as opposed to breathing it in?
or are these particles small enough to pass through the lungs, into
the blood, and thence filtered into the urine?

> Croat Med J 2001 Apr;42(2):130-4
> Croat Med J 1999 Mar;40(1):49-66

i've noticed quite a bit of good stuff not only from the Balkans but
from parts of Europe as well.

if you get the Durakovic and Dietz article to be published in Military
Medicine, maybe you could pass it along offlist? and dietz's email
too, if he has made it public.

many thanks for the info.

les schaffer

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