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Kelly AFB (No Te Acabes - Contamination)

Kelly AFB (No Te Acabes - Contamination)

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Published by: vomeditor on May 18, 2013
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Placido Salazarpsalazar9@satx.rr.com Kelly AFB: (No te Acabes - contamination)
11 (Fall 1996)A Vicious Downward Spiral to Destruction
The Military and Nuclear Pollution
Yana M. Bland, Ph.D.,
Association of Women of the Mediterranean Region 
The Mediterranean, where I come from, has been occupied by various foreign military powers for some two thousand years. Before the military invaders came, we enjoyed a three-thousand- year temple age with a guiding creativity motif of the "tree of life" with its interconnected branches spiraling upward. The military age replaced that homage to life by an obsession withterritorial power and death-a vicious downward spiral-with militarized states dependent on gross inequalities and violence and these very inequalities and violent repression breeding moreviolence. Despite important changes, this remains the predominant socio-economic
The problem is staggering
War economies with their concomitant technological advances and lack of democracy haveaccelerated military madness. Now, the size of the problem is staggering. There are, for instance,400 metric tons of separated plutonium in the world today-most of it in the US and former Sovietmilitary stockpiles. The radioactive half-life of plutonium is 24,000 years. One millionth of anounce of inhaled plutonium oxide dust will cause lung cancer in humans.Radioactive contaminated waste is transported and dumped, threatening the eco-system and thehealth of humans. Recently, 25 shiploads of radioactive waste were sunk in the Mediterraneannot far from Italy. Seven of them were sunk in the calm sea near densely populated Reggio.Some containers were found to be contaminated with Thorium 238, a radioactive metal. TheAttorney General of Reggio is investigating the crime ring responsible, including GeorgeComerio, who is said to have been paid $1.4 million for every 200 ton container of radioactivewaste that he has scuttled.
The Mediterranean is one of the most inhabited areas of the world and the nearly-enclosed seatakes over 200 years to recycle. We are already noting a higher rate of leukemia in fishing ports.The chief engineer of this "scientific" dumping recently attended a course run by theInternational Atomic Energy Agency, the totally undemocratic agency that is supposed to be theinternational nuclear watchdog.Instead of focusing on the real problems of nuclear waste disposal and the threat of toxiccontamination of millions of people, the US government increases production and proliferationof weapons of death in order to further increase its military supremacy.Few U.S. citizens have been on the receiving end of such missiles and fearfully destructiveweapons. But members of the "Association of Women of the Mediterranean Region," many of whom are refugees from war zones, recognize the escalation of the arms race in the EasternMediterranean as a serious threat to peace and to their basic human rights.
The New Arms Race
Despite the end of the Cold War, excessive production and trade in weapons of mass destructioncontinues. The lame economic excuse that arms exports favor a nation's balance of payments isfurther undermined by recent "offsetting agreements" that negate the necessity for a buyer toactually pay.In the past year, the United States has sold millions of dollars of advanced weapons to Turkey.
Table: Selected U.S. Arms Contracts with Turkey, January-December 1995
 March 16Martin Marietta supplies MK41 vertical launching systems, installation support andancillary hardware. Contract values at $2.9m.Apr 28 Lockheed won a $55m increase to a contract for 80 F-16 aircraft.May 3 General Electric won a $37.7 m contract for 10 F110 engines for F-16D aircraft.May 11 Boeing won a $5.8m contract to supply materials for KC-135 aircraft.May 23 Raytheon won a $4.5m contract to supply Seasparrow missile systems.June 5CFM International won a $512m contract to supply 30 CFM56 engines for KC-135aircraft./TD>July 24 General Electric won a $17.1m contract for F-110 engines for F-16D aircraft.Aug 15McDonnell Douglas Aerospace won a $15.3m contract to supply Harpoon &SLAM missiles.
Aug 21 Lockheed won a $511m increase to an F-16 aircraft contract.Sep 29General Electric: $7.3m contract for 118 combustion cases for GE F-110 enginesfor F-16C and D aircraft.Dec 15 US Congress approves a $132m package of 120 ATACMS.Total value of selective U.S. arms contracts: $1,300.6 million from
 Arms Trade News
Nov 95-Jan 96The Turkish military has tortured and maimed countless people, killed thousands, and destroyedclose to 3,000 villages. Most people know about and sympathize with the plight of Kurdishrefugees! But the Turkish government has also repeatedly violated UN resolutions calling for anend its 22 year occupation of northern Cyprus. Yet the U.S. government ratified the sale of $132million Army Tactical Missile Systems (ATACMS) to Turkey for its own military ends, ensuringcontinued US access to Incyrlik air base in south central Turkey. Obviously, U.S. military policyis territorial to the point of ignoring blatant human rights abuses to further its own war economy.
Joint Ventures
 Not only is there uncontrolled production and trade in arms, long after the end of the Cold War,there are an increasing number of joint military ventures. These result in new centers of militaryindustry and technology, many in flagrantly oppressive and undemocratic states. Recently, for instance, McDonnell-Douglas announced an $18 million joint venture with the United ArabEmirates (UAE), and successfully lobbied US Congress to approve the export of AdvancedMedium-Range Air-to-Air Missiles (AMRAAMs) to the UAE, in order to clinch (and offset) anF-15 sale. This will significantly raise the level of weapons technology in the region.
Taxpayer liability
To ease the further proliferation of advanced military weapons and technology, the U.S.Congress passed a Loan Guarantee Program in December, 1995 which will underwrite most U.S.foreign military sales and cushion them with a $15 billion U.S. Treasury (Taxpayer) liability.Despite much peace rhetoric, the U.S. government will spend $265 billion dollars on traditionaldefense programs in 1996. This is almost as much as the rest of the world's combinedexpenditure on the military, and roughly three times more than any other single nation.
Ossified Strategies
Meanwhile, the "Partnership for Peace," one of the latest euphemisms for the extension of  NATO and (therefore US) hegemony, has had the effect of decreasing the peace dividend andincreasing the arms race. Between 1992 and 1994, cash-strapped "peace partners" still increasedmilitary spending, allowing for inflation, at the following absurd pace: Poland 100%; Hungary10%; Slovakia 9%; Czech Republic 25%; Romania 690%.

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