Laka Foundation, May 1999
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Organisations involved in campaigns against depleted uranium
- Military Toxics Project
- Campaign Against Depleted Uranium
- International Action Centre
- Swords to Plowshares
- Laka Foundation
The mission of the Military Toxics Project is to unite activists, organizations, and communities in the struggle to clean up military pollution, safe-guard the transportation of hazardous materials, and to advance the development and implementation of preventative solutions to the toxic and radioactive pollution caused by military activities. MTP's mission is based on mutual respect and justice for all peoples, free from any form of discrimination or bias.
The purpose of the Military Toxics Project is to provide information, education resources, community and political organizing resources to the public, the MTP networks and membership. MTP serves as a bridge and facilitator for interorganizational cooperation around military pollution issues. MTP's relationship is one of mutual respect and support with it's membership, networks, and collegial campaigns around the country. MTP works to assist local communities, not for them but with them. MTP activities will focus on both service and organizing efforts. MTP helps member organizations and networks to project their individual voices nationally and internationally.
The DU Case Narrative by Dan Fahey (first edition: March 2, 1998) was co-produced by MTP along with Swords to Plowshares and the National Gulf War Resource Center. Case Narratives are reports of what we known today about specific events that took place during the Gulf War. This particular case narrative focusses on exposures to DU.
Greater Manchester CND (Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament) launched the Campaign Against Depleted Uranium Weapons (CADU) in January, '99. The main reasons which prompted the launch at this time were:
* Information was received from the Ministry of Defence that depleted uranium weapons had definitely been used in the Gulf War by both the UK and the USA.
* There had been a number of disturbing reports, from both eye witness journalists and Iraqi doctors, about the increase of birth defects and cancers, particularly leukaemia and childhood cancers, in the population of Southern Iraq where most of the shelling took place in the Gulf War.
* Gulf War veterans, suffering from what has come to be called Gulf War syndrome ie chronic states of ill-health leading to almost complete incapacity, finally managing to get tests for radiation poisoning tested positive.
* An increase in childhood leukaemia and cancer in the surrounding villages of the test firing area for du weapons in South West Scotland. The shells were test fired from a firing range into the Solway Firth. Continued representations by concerned residents, who had kept careful records, have been completely ignored by the government Scottish Office.
* A lack of knowledge about the health effects of low-level radiation. Not only the nuclear industry but one or two so-called 'independent' scientists keep repeating that du does not emit any dangerous radioactivity because it is low-level and has a long half-life.
* Already the United Nations Commission on Human Rights Sub-Commission on Prevention of Discrimination and Protection of Minorities has depleted uranium weapons as weapons of 'mass destruction and indiscriminate effect.' A report is being prepared by the Colombian rapporteur to be published later in 1999.
Contact: CADU, c/o Greater Manchester and District CND, One World Centre, 6 Mount Street, Manchester, M2 5NS, United Kindom.
E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org and Rae Street email@example.com
The IAC was initiated in 1991 by former U.S. Attorney General Ramsey Clark and other anti-war activists who had rallied hundreds of thousands of people in the United States to oppose the U.S./UN war against Iraq. It incorporates the demand to end racism, sexism, homophobia and poverty in the United States with opposition to U.S. militarism and domination around the world.
The IAC coordinated an International War Crimes Tribunal that held hearings in twenty countries and thirty U.S. cities probing the Pentagon's systematic destruction of Iraq. In 1992, the IAC published the ground-breaking book, The Fire This Time, which reports the evidence presented at the tribunal implicating the U.S. government for gross violations of international law. In it, Clark discusses the military use of depleted-uranium weapons during the Gulf War and its danger to both Iraqis and Gulf War veterans. For the last five years the IAC has been a leader of the movement to unconditionally end U.S./UN sanctions against Iraq.
In mid-1996 the IAC initiated the Depleted Uranium Education Project to fight against radioactive waste, contamination and nuclear testing. This led to the September 12, 1996 meeting of Non-Governmental Organizations at the United Nations Church Center to expose the health and environmental consequences of DU weapons and eventually to the book, Metal of Dishonor.
The International Action Center is a volunteer activist organization. In its campaigns opposing U.S. intervention, the center relies totally on the donations and assistance of supporters around the country.
Swords to Plowshares is dedicated to restoring dignity, hope, and self-suffiency to veterans in need.
To fulfill this mission, Swords to Plowshares
- Provides direct services to assist veterans with post-military transition to civilian life,
- Educates the general public about the needs of veterans, and
- Networks on behalf of veterans' issues.
Swords to Plowshares is a public-benefit, tax-exempt organization. Born out of the pain and dislocation of the Vietnam War, Swords started in 1974 by a group of veterans and volunteers at the Veterans Administration in San Francisco - vets who wanted to help their peers and themselves through the difficult readjustment to civilian life. After a decade, the focus shifted to homeless veterans, those who had not found a way to settle down after their military experience.
In recent years Swords has been tracking developments concerning veterans suffering from Gulf War Syndrome. Because of the experience assisting Vietnam veterans exposed to Agent Orange, many Gulf War veterans have contacted Swords for help in getting compensation for debilitating illnesses. Swords is at the forefront in educating the public about the widespread harm caused by the military's use of DU during the Gulf War
Contact: Swords to Plowshares, 1063 Market Street, San Francisco, CA 94103-1605, USA.
Laka has its roots in the Dutch antinuclear movement. Since 1981 Laka collects information on nuclear energy and related issues. The archives accommodate an extensive collection of newspaper clippings (250,000), books (7,500), TV documentaries (several hundreds), professional journals, technical literature, antinuclear magazines and posters.
Until the late 1980's, Laka was mainly focussed on nuclear energy in the Netherlands. Due to increased information requests from abroad and cooperation with the international organised World Information Service on Energy (WISE-International, Amsterdam) the center oriented more and more internationally.
The answering of information requests is considered as the most important task. Institutes, researchers and journalists are charged with an hourly research wage; individuals only pay the copies and forwarding-charges; organizations and persons without means have no costs. Laka is doing research on own initiative or on request.
Since spring 1992, one of Laka's main projects is the depleted uranium issue. The documentation center contains about 5,000 articles and tens of books. In 1992, a staff member visited Iraq in a fact-finding mission. Since 1993, Laka plays an important role in the discussion about the El Al 1992 airplane crash in Amsterdam and the presence of depleted uranium in the plane. Laka published several articles in Dutch and foreign newspapers and magazines on the civil and military uses of depleted uranium. It also contributed to many (international) book-projects, tv-documentaries and attended numerous international conferences on the issue of depleted uranium, and it published several research-papers on the consequences of the Amsterdam-crash. Laka is considered widely to be one of the most important sources for information in Europe on depleted uranium.
Contact: Laka Foundation, documentation and research center on nuclear energy, Ketelhuisplein 43, 1054 RD Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Tel: +31-20-6168294; Fax: +31-20-6892179
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