Secret Cold War tests in St. Louis raise concerns

mr. sin

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Mar 30, 2005
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#1
http://news.yahoo.com/secret-cold-war-tests-st-louis-raise-concerns-214608828.html


ST. LOUIS (AP) — Doris Spates was a baby when her father died inexplicably in 1955. She has watched four siblings die of cancer, and she survived cervical cancer.
After learning that the Army conducted secret chemical testing in her impoverished St. Louis neighborhood at the height of the Cold War, she wonders if her own government is to blame.
In the mid-1950s, and again a decade later, the Army used motorized blowers atop a low-income housing high-rise, at schools and from the backs of station wagons to send a potentially dangerous compound into the already-hazy air in predominantly black areas of St. Louis.

Local officials were told at the time that the government was testing a smoke screen that could shield St. Louis from aerial observation in case the Russians attacked.
But in 1994, the government said the tests were part of a biological weapons program and St. Louis was chosen because it bore some resemblance to Russian cities that the U.S. might attack. The material being sprayed was zinc cadmium sulfide, a fine fluorescent powder.
Now, new research is raising greater concern about the implications of those tests. St. Louis Community College-Meramec sociology professor Lisa Martino-Taylor's research has raised the possibility that the Army performed radiation testing by mixing radioactive particles with the zinc cadmium sulfide, though she concedes there is no direct proof.
But her report, released late last month, was troubling enough that both U.S. senators from Missouri wrote to Army Secretary John McHugh demanding answers.
Aides to Sens. Claire McCaskill and Roy Blunt said they have received no response. Army spokesman Dave Foster declined an interview request from The Associated Press, saying the Army would first respond to the senators.
 

OilyJillFart

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Sep 26, 2008
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#2
Doris Spates was a baby when her father died inexplicably in 1955

....

In the mid-1950s, and again a decade later, the Army used motorized blowers
So, either he got cancer really fast, or the opening line has nothing to do with the rest of the article.
 

lajikal

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Aug 6, 2009
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#3
So, either he got cancer really fast, or the opening line has nothing to do with the rest of the article.
Where does it say he died of cancer?

The mid-west sucks ass anyway.
 

Atomic Fireball

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Jul 26, 2005
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#4
Well if a junior college sociology professor can't get to the bottom of this, nobody can
 

whiskeyguy

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#5
Well if a junior college sociology professor can't get to the bottom of this, nobody can
Unfortunately he ran out of time to investigate further because the small gas engine repair program, which he also teaches, added a fifth class.
 

OilyJillFart

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Sep 26, 2008
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#6
Where does it say he died of cancer?

The mid-west sucks ass anyway.
It doesn't specifically, it implies he died as a consequence of the spraying by being included and even featured as an opening remark.
 

lajikal

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Aug 6, 2009
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#7
It doesn't specifically, it implies he died as a consequence of the spraying by being included and even featured as an opening remark.
Is it possible he died of chem/bio exposure and his kids died of cancer?
 
Dec 8, 2004
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#8
Stuff like that happened a lot back in "the day"... like is Lynn there is a huge cancer cluster around the GE plant where they made (from Wiki)

Initially the General Electric plant specialized in arc lights, electric motors, and meters. Later it specialized in aircraft electrical systems and components, and aircraft engines were built in Lynn during WWII. That engine plant evolved into the current jet engine plant during WWII because of research contacts at MIT in Cambridge.[7] Gerhard Neumann was a key player in jet engine group at GE in Lynn. The continuous interaction of material science research at MIT and the resulting improvements in jet engine efficiency and power have kept the jet engine plant in Lynn ever since.

Or outside of Toronto: From Wiki

The McClure Radioactive Site was a housing site in Scarborough, Ontario that was contaminated with radium from a previous industrial use. McClure Crescent was a street in the housing complex where the contaminated soil was discovered.

In the 1940s, Radium Luminous Industries was a company that operated a plant in the Malvern area of Scarborough. The plant extracted radium from scrap metal to be used for experiments in accelerated plant growth. The experiments ultimately proved unsuccessful and the company shut down operations. However, the soil on the site of the plant was radioactively contaminated.[1]

In the 1970s, the Ontario provincial government purchased the land for a housing project. In 1980, the radioactive soil was rediscovered on McClure Crescent. Additional contaminated soil was discovered on nearby McLevin Avenue in April 1990.

After lengthy litigation and negotiation, the government agreed to buy back some of the properties and remove the contaminated soil. In 1995, the soil was excavated from 60 properties and moved to a temporary storage facility on Passmore Avenue.[2]

Some of the radioactive material was transferred and is stored at Chalk River, Ontario. The bulk of the soil (about 16,000 cubic metres) was buried at the Passmore Avenue site and is continually monitored. Since it was buried results have shown that it is not adversely affecting the local environment. In 1999 monitoring of ambient gamma radiation remained at 0.04 Sv/h which is below the 0.06 Sv/h minimum set by the Low-Level Radioactive Waste Management Office.[3]
.
 

gleet

What's black and white and red all over?
Jul 24, 2005
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#9
I salute them for helping us win the Cold War. Good job. Now go away.
 

mascan42

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Aug 26, 2002
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#10
Just to get the timeline straight here:

1954: the gov't sprayed some chemicals.
1955: people died mysteriously.
1994: the gov't admitted that the spraying was a bioweapons test.
2012: it occurred to someone that there might possibly be some connection here.

How stupid are you that it takes that long to think, "Hmmmm . . . I wonder if there's something slightly odd going on?"