September 13, 2010 § 7 Comments
by Steven Harkins
Conspiracy theories exist in ‘the realm of myth’, where ‘imaginations run wild, fears trump facts, and evidence is ignored’ [i]. This is according to a website created by the US State Department to debunk a range of outlandish conspiracy theories.
Among the theories criticized on the website are conspiracies regarding the assassination of JFK, the moon landings, and the September 11th attacks [ii]. Alongside these well-known sources of wild speculation is the subject of depleted uranium (DU). The website states:
Uranium evokes very powerful fears. It is associated with atomic weapons, mass annihilation, radiation sickness, cancer and birth defects. Depleted uranium evokes these same fears, despite the fact that it has been depleted of much of its radioactivity. Fear-based associations can be more powerful than logic and facts. Compare how you feel about tungsten to how you feel about depleted uranium. Both are heavy metals, but “depleted uranium” might sound scarier to you [iii].
So the US State Department argue that when it comes to conspiracy theories ‘evidence is ignored’ and that it is ‘fear-based associations’ and not ‘logic and facts’ that have caused people to make a connection between birth defects, cancer and depleted uranium.
February 12, 2009 § 1 Comment
‘The New Fallujah Up Close and Still in Ruins’. Our friend Dahr Jamail, who is presently back in Iraq, files this excellent report for the indispensable TomDispatch.
Fallujah, Iraq — Driving through Fallujah, once the most rebellious Sunni city in this country, I saw little evidence of any kind of reconstruction underway. At least 70% of that city’s structures were destroyed during massive U.S. military assaults in April, and again in November 2004, and more than four years later, in the “new Iraq,” the city continues to languish.
The shells of buildings pulverized by U.S. bombs, artillery, or mortar fire back then still line Fallujah’s main street, or rather, what’s left of it. As one of the few visible signs of reconstruction in the city, that street — largely destroyed during the November 2004 siege — is slowly being torn up in order to be repaved.