U.S. used toxic depleted uranium in Syria

From RT
February 14, 2017

US admits using toxic depleted uranium against ISIS in Syria
A-10 Thunderbolt II. © SRA Greg L. Davis, USAF / Wikipedia

More than 5,000 rounds of depleted uranium (DU) ammunition were used in two attacks on Islamic State oil tankers in eastern Syria, the US military has confirmed. The US-led coalition previously pledged it would not use the controversial ordnance.

A spokesman for the US Central Command (CENTCOM) told Foreign Policy that 5,265 armor-piercing DU rounds were used in November 2015, during two air raids against Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) oil tanker convoys in the Deir ez-Zor and Hasakah provinces in eastern Syria.

A-10 ground attack aircraft fired the projectiles from their 30mm rotating cannons, destroying about 350 tanker trucks, according to CENTCOM spokesman Major Josh Jacques.

Officials confirm the US used depleted uranium weapons on the battlefield in Iraq and Syria: http://www.stripes.com/news/middle-east/the-united-states-used-depleted-uranium-in-syria-1.453925 

Photo published for The United States used depleted uranium in Syria

The United States used depleted uranium in Syria

Officials have confirmed that the U.S. military, despite vowing not to use depleted uranium weapons on the battlefield in Iraq and Syria, fired thousands of rounds of the such munitions during two…

stripes.com

In March 2015, spokesman for the US-led coalition John Moore had explicitly ruled out the use of the controversial ammunition, saying that “US and coalition aircraft have not been and will not be using depleted uranium munitions in Iraq or Syria during Operation Inherent Resolve.” The Pentagon explained that armor-piercing DU rounds were not necessary because IS did not have the tanks it was designed to penetrate.

Investigative reporter Samuel Oakford first brought up the use of DU ammunition by the coalition in October 2016, when a US Air Force congressional liaison told Representative Martha McSally (R-Arizona) that A-10s flying missions over Syria had fired 6,479 rounds of “combat mix” on two occasions. The officer explained that a fifth of the “combat mix” consisted of high-explosive incendiary (HEI) rounds, while the rest were DU armor-piercers. [in other words, 4/5 DU]

The first attack took place on November 16, near Al-Bukamal in the Deir ez-Zor province, with four US planes destroying 46 vehicles. The strike took place entirely in Syrian territory. According to CENTCOM, 1,790 rounds of “combat mix” were used during the strike, including 1,490 rounds of DU.

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The second attack, on November 22, destroyed 293 oil tankers in the desert between Deir ez-Zor and Hasakah. On this occasion, the four A-10s fired 4,530 rounds – of which 3,775 were DU armor-piercers.

“The combination of Armored Piercing Incendiary (DU) rounds mixed with HEI rounds was used to ensure a higher probability of destruction of the truck fleet ISIS was using to transport its illicit oil,” Major Jacques told RT.

Depleted uranium is prized by the US military for exceptional toughness, which enables it to pierce heavy tank armor. However, airborne DU particles can contaminate nearby ground and water and pose a significant risk of toxicity, birth defects and cancer when inhaled or ingested by humans or animals.

The coalition’s promise not to use DU munitions in Iraq was made after an estimated one million rounds were used during the 1991 Gulf War and the 2003 invasion. Between Iraq and the Balkans, where they were also used in the 1990s, DU rounds have been blamed on a massive increase in cancer and birth defects.

These DU contaminated locations in pose a risk to civilian health and must be isolated and addressed as soon as conditions allow. https://twitter.com/airwars/status/831506092454723584 

U.S. Air Force prepares to support ground war in Eastern Europe…with depleted uranium?

—A-10 Demonstration of Power – I would not want to be in that tank when those 30mm depleted uranium rounds, firing at 3,900 rounds a minute, shred the inside.[1]

The United States is sending A-10s to Europe [2]

A-10s use depleted uranium.

Do the Europeans really understand what’s in store if the A-10s are used?

Does Europe want more environmental radioactive contamination?

Does Ukraine want DU contamination like Kosovo and Iraq, with cancer and birth defects and permanent environmental damage?

Why aren’t the Baltic states speaking out on this?

Americans will not have to pay the consequences like the people of Europe, or especially the people of Ukraine.

What’s the cost of fear and fear-mongering by foreign and domestic politicians, political parties, and NATO? It’s a destroyed country forever. Isn’t it better to question, even question one’s beliefs and prejudices, than to mindlessly step off a cliff to one’s doom?

Who benefits from this situation?

And who pays?

 

A-10 Thunderbolt Aircraft

Of all the US military platforms that fire DU, the A-10 is responsible for the greatest proportion of DU fired

  • Used for close air support
  • Responsible for the largest share of DU ammunition fired by US forces
  • Due to be replaced by the Joint Strike Figher
  • The A-10, often called the ‘Warthog’, is a close air support aircraft, meaning that it is used as back-up for ground units – typically strafing enemy forces during battle. The main armament on the A-10 is the GAU-8/A, a five barrelled gatling cannon. This cannon can shoot both the PGU-14/B Armour Piercing Incendiary (API) DU round, and the PGU-13/B High Explosive Incendiary (HEI) round, typically in a mix of 5 API to 1 HEI.
  • Because the A-10 has been used so widely, and because it can fire almost 4000 rounds of ammunition per minute, it is responsible for most of the DU contamination from the 1991 Gulf war, and for all the contamination in Serbia, Kosovo and Bosnia & Herzegovina.
  • In early 2010, ICBUW discovered that the US is planning to move away from using DU in medium calibre ammunition, such as the 30 mm rounds used in the GAU-8/A. The A-10 is also scheduled to be replaced by the F-35 Joint Strke Fighter. However, some sources question the suitability of the F-35 for an air support role, and it is expected that the A-10 and its uranium ammunition will remain part of US forces for some time to come.

http://www.bandepleteduranium.org/en/a-10-thunderbolt-aircraft

Also, see
http://www.criticalconcern.com/depleted_uranium.htm
http://www.iacenter.org/depleted/duyug.htm

[1] http://www.military.com/ video/ aircraft/ attack-and-fighter-aircraft/ a-10-warthogs-from-hell/ 1367845281001
A-10 ‘Warthogs From Hell’

[2] https://freeukrainenow.org/2015/02/20/u-s-air-force-leads-nato-reinforcement-against-Russia/
https://rickrozoff.wordpress.com/2015/02/23/u-s-air-force-prepares-to-support-ground-war-in-eastern-Europe/