Saturday, November 18, 2006
Our good friend, the U.S. government, is back at it again. Those friendly, well-meaning and beneficent souls at the Pentagon are again pushing to explode that 700 ton bomb (billed as the largest explosion in the history of humankind) in the desert wastes north of Las Vegas.
After being strongly rebuffed by Indiana and New Mexico as possible testing grounds, they are now back to square one, which is to utilize the heavily radiated Nevada test site. As we all know this detonation will spew lethal poisons into the skies of southern Utah, northern Arizona and the adjacent counties of rural Nevada for many days following the explosion. So please read on folks, the following is from today's editorial page of the St. George Daily Spectrum:
Divine Strake back in Nevada
The fight is on, again. Sen. Pete Domenici, R-N.M., a member of the Senate Defense Appropriations Subcommittee, says the Defense Threat Reduction Agency told him the Divine Strake test explosion of 700 tons of ammonium nitrate and fuel oil will take place at the Nevada Test Site.
After public outcry and legal machinations, the test, which was to have taken place last summer at the NTS, was rerouted first to a gravel quarry in Indiana, then to White Sands, N.M. and now it's back in southern Nevada.
Take off the gloves, it's time to go bare knuckles against this project and flush it once and for all.
This test is likely to kick up settled radioactivity from the desert floor and spew it into the atmosphere, only to be dumped at the will of the jet stream who knows where.
This test is also a precursor to the development of a bunker-buster bomb, which, according to the sparse material available, is a next-generation mini-nuclear device. Development of a new nuclear bomb would, of course, result in more testing at the Nevada Test Site.
Tens of thousands, at least, died or encountered debilitating illness over the course of the last half-century as a result of fallout from the previous nuclear tests. They call them Downwinders and a few of them in Nevada and Utah received money through the Radiation Exposure Compensation Act pushed through Congress by Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, in 1999. The clouds of death covered the contiguous 48 states and stretched into parts of Canada, killing and poisoning untold others who were not compensated.
With an ever-growing population in the southeastern corner of Nevada near Las Vegas and the southwest corner of Utah, which is one of the most rapidly growing areas in the country, there are now more bodies to contaminate, more souls to be sacrificed in the name of nuclear weapon advancement.
Politically and morally, two words that are seldom used together, it would also be an arrogant move by the United States to resume nuclear testing while pulling in the reins on other sovereign nations.
This is an issue the new Congress cannot ignore.
Rep. Jim Matheson, D-Utah, is a holdover from the last regime. He's fought the good fight against further nuclear testing and armament. It's not that he's soft on defense, it's that as a native of southern Utah, he has witnessed the death count from nuclear testing, which includes the loss of his own father, former governor of the state.
It's time to take action. Start by contacting your local representatives. Then call Irene Smith, the DTRA spokeswoman, at (703) 767-5870. Finally, contact the White House at (202) 456-1414 or (202) 456-1111.
Boy am I happy to be living in Florida!