Cancer: It's the Radiation




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"My recent study (Radiation from Medical Procedures, 699 pages) provides the first powerful evidence that the U.S. population's accumulated exposure to medical x-rays is a necessary co-actor in causing over half the deaths from cancer, and over half the deaths also from ischemic (coronary) heart disease. Since the study's publication in November 1999, no one has shown that it overestimates the impact of x-rays in causing cancer and coronary heart disease. Some people say "it must be an overestimate," but they have never shown how. Some of the critics have never even looked at the study."
John W. Gofman, M.D., Ph.D.
"The X-rays and Health Project. An educational project of the Committee for Nuclear Responsibility."

Article for The Union
Cancer: It's the Radiation!

Ever wonder why cancer is so prevalent in our society? So did Dr. Irwin Bross, director of biostatistics at Roswell Park Memorial Institute in Buffalo, New York. In the 1970s, Dr. Bross headed a project that studied the alarming increase in rates of leukemia. His sample was 16 million people from New York, Maryland, and Minnesota.

After checking factors as diverse as health history, occupational history, residential history, family background, cause of death for parents and grandparents, exposure to farm animals, pet ownership, whether or not the pets had ever been sick, Dr. Bross came to the conclusion that the main cause of the rising rates of leukemia was medical radiation in the form of diagnostic medical X-rays (Leslie Freeman, ed., Nuclear Witnesses: Insiders Speak Out, New York: Norton, 1982, p. 27).

Dr. John Gofman, Professor Emeritus of Molecular and Cell Biology at the University of California at Berkeley, was wondering the same thing in the early 1990s. His research led him to write a 400-page book in which he estimates that "three-quarters of the current annual incidence of breast cancer in the United States is being caused by earlier ionizing radiation, primarily from medical sources." Astonishingly, this isn't even news. "[M]edical science," Gofman continues, "has known for 20 years that ionizing radiation is a prominent and proven cause of breast-cancer" (John Gofman, Preventing Breast Cancer, San Francisco: Committee for Nuclear Responsibility, 1995, p. 303).

Let's jump back to 1913. Memorial Sloan-Kettering, the world's largest private cancer treatment and research center, is about to commit itself to the long-term use of radiation in cancer treatment. Why?

A very wealthy businessman named James Douglas wanted to make some fairly hefty donations to cancer research. According to Bob Considine, former Memorial Sloan-Kettering official historian, however, "Douglas's gifts came with strings attached." You see, Douglas owned a large number of radium mines and stood to make an enormous profit if the medical use of radiation caught on. Douglas made it a basic condition of his contributions that radiation be used routinely in all of the center's cancer treatments (John Robbins, Reclaiming Our Health, Tiburon, CA: HJ Kramer, 1996,p. 231).

Just in case you think you have a friend to go to with this information in the National Cancer Institute or the American Cancer society, or even the AMA, you'd better think again. It was the National Cancer Institute that cut off Dr. Bross's funding when his Tri-State Leukemia Survey was published. And all three of these agencies have blacklisted all cancer treatments not in line with radiation and chemotherapy models.

What are these alternative treatments? 1) Essiac (principally burdock root, sheep sorrel, turkey rhubarb root, and slippery elm bark); 2) Hoxsey formula (herbal, similar to Essiac); 3) vitamin C (proven effective for most types of cancer by Nobel Peace Prize winner Linus Pauling); 4) Gerson diet (raw vegetarian); 5) Michio Kushi diet (macrobiotic); 6) Burzynski therapy (antineoplastons, substances that occur naturally in the human body).

These natural therapies, blacklisted by all the relevant major medical associations because of their non-patentability, have track records far superior to those of traditional therapies in every category of comparison--even price. The price tag today for standard cancer therapy is approximately $100,000.00. Essiac costs four cents a day.

Ionizing radiation is not, of course, the only determinant of cancer in our society. Other determinants include diets high in meat, eggs, dairy products, refined sugar, white flour, processed foods; chlorine (found in virtually all government-approved drinking water); pesticides; bottle-feeding; having been born to a woman who bottle-fed; supplemental estrogen; and the birth control pill. (Regarding this last, the July 30, 1992 New England Journal of Medicine found that the long-term use of oral contraceptives "appears to increase the risk of breast cancer by about 50 percent"). Radiation is unique, however, in that it is the only one of these substances that we use to diagnose and "prevent" cancer.

Let's jump ahead to May 3, 1998. A Reuters news service article proclaims: Government scientists excited about cancer drugs." Dr. Richard Klausner, director of the National Cancer Institute: "I am putting nothing on higher priority than getting [these drugs] into clinical trials. [These drugs are] the single most exciting thing on the horizon" for cancer treatment.

Dr. Judah Folkman, who discovered the drugs, has a different take: "If you have cancer and you are a mouse, we can take care of you." Although the drugs have been tested only on mice, somehow one of the drugs, Xeloda, has already won "accelerated approval" from the FDA, requiring the company to confirm the drug's benefit only after it hits the market. Reassuring, isn't it?

To find out about proven alternative, and possibly illegal, cancer therapies, call: Healing Choices (718) 636-4433, read Sheila Snow's book, The Essence of Essiac; or visit the web site of Natural Woman, Natural Man, Inc.


To see this story with its related links on the Guardian Unlimited site, go to

Cancer linked to cold war bomb tests
US accused of withholding report on fallout deaths
Julian Borger in Washington
Thursday February 28 2002
The Guardian

A US government study says that the fallout from cold war nuclear tests carried out by the US, Britain, France and the Soviet Union has caused the death of an estimated 15,000 Americans.

The study was conducted by the National Cancer Institute and the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, but its publication has been delayed by the US government. However, excerpts of the report were obtained by Tom Harkin, Democratic senator for Iowa, and have been published on a website run by a watchdog group, the Institute for Energy and Environmental Research ( 

The study estimates that an estimated 80,000 people who lived or who were born in the US in the past 50 years have contracted or will contract cancer as a result of American nuclear tests conducted in Nevada and the Pacific ocean, Soviet tests in Kazakhstan and eastern Russia, French tests in the Pacific and British tests on Christmas Island. 

Of that number, 15,000 cases are estimated to be fatal. The study reported that everyone living on the US mainland has been exposed to fallout. 

"The message is we are all downwinders," said Bob Schaeffer, of the Alliance for Nuclear Accountability, a coalition of pressure groups. He said the report summary obtained by Mr Harkin was dated August 2001, but claimed it had not been made public because of unwillingness by governments to acknowledge the impact of past nuclear testing programmes. 

"There is a pattern of denial by both the US and UK governments about the damage done to non-combatants by the nuclear weapons programme," he said. "We want to get this information out so people who live in the areas most affected can get screened and treated."  

The IEER's president, Arjun Makhijani, said: "This report and other official data show that hot spots occurred thousands of miles away from the test sites. 

"Hot spots due to testing in Nevada occurred as far away as New York and Maine. Hot spots from US Pacific area testing and also Soviet testing were scattered across the United States, from California, Oregon, Washington, and in the west to New Hampshire, Vermont and North Carolina in the east." 

The $1.85m (1.3m) study took two years and measured radioactive isotopes across the US. Lisa Ledwidge, an IEER biologist commended the US government for carrying out an epidemiological study. "It is the only nuclear weapon state to have done so," she said. "But it is not enough to estimate numbers or say you're sorry. The harm is still occurring." 

The tests sent plumes of debris into the upper atmosphere where it was swirled around the Earth, depositing highly radioactive isotopes in the form of rain. 

"Any person living in the contiguous United States since 1951 has been exposed to radioactive fallout", the study found, "and all organs and tissues of the body have received some radiation exposure." 

In the areas worst hit by the fallout, the impact would have been equivalent to receiving one chest X-ray a year, higher than the total recommended for infants or pregnant women. The death toll from the fallout was estimated by comparing the actual incidence of cancer in badly affected areas with national norms. 

In the early days of nuclear weapons testing, very little or no notice was given to people living or working nearby. It has long been speculated that the legendary actor, John Wayne, contracted cancer and died as a result of the fallout from a bomb test in Nevada, 100 miles downwind from where he was making a film about Genghis Khan, The Conqueror, in 1954. 

By 1980, 91 of the 220-strong cast and crew had contracted or died of cancer.
However, the connection between the deaths and the Nevada test was never proven in court. 

The latest study was ordered by Congress in 1998 after an earlier study, examining only the dispersal of iodine-131, found that exposure had been considerable across the US. The new study was designed to look into the dispersal of other radioactive elements and to estimate their impact on public health. 

"The 1997 report indicates that some farm children - those who drank goat's milk in the 1950s in high fallout areas - were as severely exposed as the worst exposed children after the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear power plant accident. Such exposure creates a high probability of a variety of illnesses," Dr Makhijani said. "Yet the government did nothing to inform the people in these affected areas."

Copyright Guardian Newspapers Limited


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