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Palimpsest: A Memoir

Palimpsest: A Memoir

By Gore Vidal

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Toxic Fallujah

Posted on Nov 15, 2009

Fatima Ahmed, born after the assault in Fallujah, has deformities that include two heads.

Fallujah, an Iraqi city forever marked by the U.S. assault there, is dealing with another claim to infamy—infant deformities running up to 15 times higher than normal and a spike in cases of early-life cancers that may be linked to toxic materials from the fighting.  —JCL

The Guardian:

Doctors in Iraq’s war-ravaged enclave of Falluja are dealing with up to 15 times as many chronic deformities in infants and a spike in early life cancers that may be linked to toxic materials left over from the fighting.

The extraordinary rise in birth defects has crystallised over recent months as specialists working in Falluja’s over-stretched health system have started compiling detailed clinical records of all babies born.

Neurologists and obstetricians in the city interviewed by the Guardian say the rise in birth defects—which include a baby born with two heads, babies with multiple tumours, and others with nervous system problems—are unprecedented and at present unexplainable.

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By Mike, November 18, 2009 at 11:48 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

One of many war crimes comitted by one administration and covered up by another administration.  I can’t believe you are not used to this by now.  It won’t stop until we make it stop.
Support the Troops:  Abolish depleted uranium weapons.
Arrest Bust& Impeach Obama.

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By radson, November 16, 2009 at 7:22 pm Link to this comment

G Anderson
Your right ,it’s what i call the Hapsburg wedding game ,your either in the club or not.

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By G.Anderson, November 16, 2009 at 7:09 pm Link to this comment

Yes, as previously mentioned many of our vets from Iraq will be peeing radiation, as long as they live. There famlies will also be exposed to that radiation, their wives to irradiated semen.

Thanks to a criminal adminstration, that remains above the law, and who is being protected by other politicians. Not because they aren’t aware of what happened.

But because like Royalty, in days gone by, allowing the peasants to seek redress against their betters, might promote the risky idea that all those who benefit from Royal birth might be subject to the law of common men. And we can’t let that happen now can we?

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By radson, November 16, 2009 at 3:43 pm Link to this comment

Decency is written on your dollar bill"in god we trust”

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By Hulk2008, November 16, 2009 at 3:23 pm Link to this comment

Fortunately for Cheney and W, no radiation or toxins could penetrate their skulls.  Remote control war gaming with the lives of others is pretty safe. 
  Ironically, the “conservatives” worry about such things as the effects of violent video games on our youth.
  Check out the song “No Bravery” by James Blount.

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By jackpine savage, November 16, 2009 at 10:13 am Link to this comment

And there are hundreds of thousands of American soldiers who’ve been exposed too. Our institutional callousness knows no bounds nor does it subscribed to flimsy notions of patriotism.

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By Virginia777, November 16, 2009 at 10:00 am Link to this comment

This is horrible and sad and an indictment of this POINTLESS war with Iraq. Burn in Hell, George Bush.

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By anaman51, November 16, 2009 at 9:02 am Link to this comment

Once again our government has outdone itself in creating misery in other countries. The very first time I heard the term “depleted uranium” I had to stop and think about how much “depletion” might be necessary to render the stuff safe. The answer is that it will never be safe. To use it not only as a material in weapons, but to line the turrets of our own tanks with it, shows what little regard our leadership has for anyone involved in a war with our country, including our own combatants. The resulting deformities in Fallujah will be said to be caused by something else, I’m betting. Accepting responsibility for its actions isn’t something our military is reknowned for. Mostly, I’d like to see Dick Cheney over there with a shovel and a sack, personally cleaning up his mess.

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By Jim Yell, November 16, 2009 at 9:01 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The best way to bring some release from the 8 years of government lawlessness would be to at lest have a court against Bush, Cheney, Rumsfield and others for their crimes against the nation and the world. Letting them off with trite dismissals of we should look to future not to the past is plain wrong. If we don’t deal with the crimes than the crimes become our own. If there isn’t any punishment for official crimes than there isn’t any accountability at all. It will only get worse.

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By thecrow, November 16, 2009 at 8:09 am Link to this comment

Fallujah and Gaza—live weapons testing on captive populations:

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By Blackspeare, November 16, 2009 at 8:08 am Link to this comment

I’ll bet if you ask, the vast majority of the people in Iraq would rather they be back to the days of Saddam Hussein.  He was a ruthless dictator/tyrant, but if you minded your p’s and q’s no problem.  Many years ago I happened to be on an engineering project in Amman, Jordan and the Jordanian engineer I was working with suggested that we take a trip to Baghdad over a long weekend since he had a friend who lived there.  This was before the invasion of Kuwait.  Though it is 500 miles (805 km) there were three of us to share the driving and with virtually no speed limits the trip went rather quickly.  I found Baghdad to be quite a interesting place sort of the Big Apple of the ME and Saddam’s visage was quite prominent.  The city was clean and active——lots of restaurants and cafes.  We learned the city was a safe place with low crime and like I said if you kept away from politics no problem.  Saddam’s overbearance kept the Sunni’s, Shi’ites, and Kurds at peace similar to what Tito did in the Balkans.  During the course of the afternoon one of our companions made a disparaging political remark against Saddam and after a brief discussion we went on to something else.  Later that afternoon someone informed us that we may have been overheard and it might be best if we left Baghdad should the authorities have been informed.  Our colleague, knowing the sensitivities of Iraq, quickly packed the vehicle and we got back to Jordan without incident.  And that was my time in Baghdad which though short, did really appear to be quite a place——probably better than it is today.  I would guess the only people happy with the current situation are the Kurds who now have an autonomous sub-state.

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By NYCartist, November 16, 2009 at 7:02 am Link to this comment

gerard’s comment is partly one I support.
As Chomsky suggests, reparations to the people of Iraq.

Specifically in re Fallujah: cleanup.  The US needs to clean up the mess.  Needs to pay for the ongoing life care of all children born with disabilities.
As a person with disabling illness (CFS/ME), all people with disabilities are my “peeps”.

The US gov’t needs to be held accountable for Fallujah, all of Iraq and Afghanistan, and all results/injuries of depleted uranium,etc. in places where the US has “dropped it”.  It needs to acknowledge the harm done to US military from the depleted uranium and other pollutants they were exposed to, everywhere (including Agent Orange, Guld War Syndrome…etc).

It’s up to us to “make it happen”.  It’s up to us to “make peace happen”.  Can’t just blame Bush & Co.

And we can include cleanup of dirty sites in the US, from coal mess liquid spills, to dirty water, to underground leakage in Brooklyn,NY for decades uncleaned and making people sick, from putting kids in schools sitting in dirty polluted buildings under the loophole that they are “rented” spaces,
and clean up the US made polluted by military bases
(includes Denver), all over the world - clean up Vieqques…remember Bikini Atol?

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By Ouroborus, November 16, 2009 at 4:22 am Link to this comment

“Lord Acton’s dictum”;
“I cannot accept your canon that we are to judge Pope
and King unlike other men with a favourable
presumption that they did no wrong. If there is any
presumption, it is the other way, against the holders
of power, increasing as the power increases. Historic
responsibility has to make up for the want of legal
responsibility. Power tends to corrupt, and absolute
power corrupts absolutely. Great men are almost
always bad men, even when they exercise influence and
not authority: still more when you superadd the
tendency or certainty of corruption by full
authority. There is no worse heresy than the fact
that the office sanctifies the holder of it. “[3]

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By jack, November 16, 2009 at 3:06 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

PW - absolutely right - and it is absolutely proscribed in the media to write on it
- read the article and “radiation” is buried in a laundry list of toxins but DU
poisoning is the worst of all

Gulf War Syndrome is DU poising but, none dare say it:  read all about it here

and repeat it often - in every blog you hit - the Pentagon’s dirty bomb component of
perpetual death and deformity: DEPLETED URANIUM

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By mike112769, November 15, 2009 at 7:18 pm Link to this comment

Purplewolf: Agreed

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By Celeste Trave, November 15, 2009 at 5:09 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I hope the neo’s of every nation hear the sobs of the mothers and fathers and the screams of the afflicted children in their sweaty dreams forever and then may they be haunted and hunted by their demons for eternity.

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By diamond, November 15, 2009 at 3:00 pm Link to this comment

Dick Cheney should have to donate all of his war profits from the Iraq war to the victims of his madness.

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By nefertiti, November 15, 2009 at 2:47 pm Link to this comment

it is not just Fallujah that is suffering from a huge number of defects , but Gaza is also suffering the same fate , after the last Bombing of Israel . but the well known Newsites (like CNN and BBC are ignoring Gaza like they ignored the latest comments from Rabbi Yitzhak Shapiro in his book King’s torah)

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By purplewolf, November 15, 2009 at 2:23 pm Link to this comment

We can all thank BUSH and company for these crimes against humanity. By using depleted uranium and other chemicals that were reported several years ago in the bombs used in Iraq, this was a known outcome. DU raises all types of cancer rates and birth defects as well as other medical complications. Unfortunately this will become worse before we see a tapering off of the damages done to all people exposed to these weapons of mass destruction from the previous administration. This isn’t even telling what has been done to the food sources from plants to animals

Any persons,companies(MIC, Pentagon etc..)or country(ies) that continues in this type of destruction to the planet and all living things is guilty of war crimes-no exceptions-no excuses-no religious justifications.

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By gerard, November 15, 2009 at 11:58 am Link to this comment

For God’s sake let’s all stop dithering in thse comment columns and do SOMETHING to stop these wars with their heinous weapons!  I dare you to watch this video without weaping.  What can we do?  How can we do it?  For starters:  Donate directly to this hospital whatever you can, or send it to the American Friends Service Committee, UNICEF,  or any other international organization you know is wroking to help these poor mothers and babies.  If you don’t know one, find one, or start one.

This is surely a crime against humanity and the investers, inventors, makers, and users ot such hellish things MUST BE STOPPED. Demand that these war-makers be sued in an international court.  Otherwise it will continue unchallenged. (Irony:  Falllujah was a holy city!  Can you imagine the buried hatred over such viciousness?  Where is the American sense of decency?)

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By trthtllr, November 15, 2009 at 11:57 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Disband the Marines, psychokillers of Falluja.

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