AMERICAN CITIZENS AS GUINEA PIGS-PART 3
By Kelleigh Nelson
July 29, 2010
Radiation Experiments on the General Population
During the cold war, while preparing America for nuclear attack, thousands of US citizens were victims of over 4,000 secret and government classified radiation experiments. They were unethical, non-consensual, and probably illegal. These classified radiation experiments were conducted by the Atomic Energy Commission (AEC), the Department of Defense (DOD), Department of Health, Education and Welfare, (HEW), the Public Health Service, (now the CDC), the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the Veterans Administration (VA), the CIA, and NASA.
Millions of people were exposed to radiation fallout from testing of more than 200 atmospheric and underground nuclear weapons. We’ve all heard of the military as well as the many famous actors that were given special viewings of the nuclear bomb tests and how they died from their radiation exposure from cancers. There were hundreds of secret releases of radiation into the environment and over populated areas, and there were over 200,000 “atomic vets” who worked closely at the Nevada test site in the 50s and 60s.
The human test subjects for specialized testing to receive radiation were mostly in a compromised or powerless position. Many were prisoners, some poor, pregnant, children, elderly, black Americans, and even mentally retarded. Many were soldiers or military personnel who felt they had to follow orders which we’ll discuss in a later article. In most cases, no informed consent was given and most of the time the subjects did not even know they’d been exposed to radiation.
Also affected were those called the “downwinders” of the nearby towns in Nevada, Utah, New Mexico and Colorado. The human and animal populations suffered the worst cumulative radioactive effects of fallout, along with their environments loaded with radioactive food, water, and farm products. Declassified AEC records (now DOD) from the 50s describe in one document that the people downwind of the Nevada test site were a “low use segment of the population.”