Both the great Truths and the great Falsehoods of the twentieth century lie hidden in the arcane, widely inaccessible, and seemingly mundane domain of the radiation sciences

Thursday, May 20, 2010

The Trial of the Cult of Nuclearists: SCAM NUMBER SIX

What follows is the continuation, in serial form, of a central chapter from my book A Primer in the Art of Deception: The Cult of Nuclearists, Uranium Weapons and Fraudulent Science.

SCAM NUMBER SIX: Beguile the public with inappropriate comparisons between external irradiation and internal contamination.

The proliferation of nuclear weapons and commercial nuclear power plants has succeeded in deluding the public of the hazards of internal contamination. Covering up the danger of radioactivity within the body from human-generated radioisotopes is the bedrock upon which the entire nuclear behemoth is secured. A common tactic used to dupe critical thinking on issues of radiation safety is to liken the dose received from internal emitters to the dose received by natural background radiation. This is very sophisticated flimflam. To the uninformed, it appears perfectly logical that dose is dose; regardless of how the energy is delivered to the body, the end result will be the same. If we receive small doses of radiation naturally just from dwelling on planet Earth or while flying in an airplane, and if these are harmless, it seems quite reasonable to conclude that the same doses delivered by internal emitters will likewise be inconsequential. By now the reader knows the con hidden within this line of thinking. It was extensively explored in Exhibit A. The biological effect of a dose of radiation depends totally on how that dose is delivered to the body. By natural background radiation, ionizing events are widely distributed both in space and time throughout the mass of the body. By contrast, internal emitters have the capacity of repeatedly hitting the same cellular structures within a small volume of tissue. In instances where “doses” are comparable, the hazard posed by internal emitters will be greatly enhanced.

This swindle can be found in the literature penned to defend the harmlessness of uranium weapons. Claims are made that the dose from inhaled uranium is as insignificant as natural background radiation. Left unsaid is that the dose from uranium/depleted uranium weapons is delivered by densely ionizing alpha radiation to sensitive and critical components of a small volume of cells, while natural background radiation is deposited throughout the whole body. Research has confirmed that, like plutonium, a portion of depleted uranium deposited in the lung is scavenged by white blood cells and transported to the tracheobronchial lymph nodes. These tiny structures become the repositories of concentrated quantities of DU. This localization of dose poses an elevated hazard to the organism that is simply not comparable to the same dose delivered to the whole body by natural background radiation.