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A negotiated settlement is the only solution for the Ukraine crisis

Seven reasons the US shouldn’t help Ukraine’s fight with Russia http://www.analystsforchange.org/2015/01/seven-reasons-us-shouldnt-help-ukraines.html MIA ΔΙΑΦΟΡΕΤΙΚΗ ΑΠΟΨΗ By  1/29/15 
As I pointed out on Forbes.com, “Only a negotiated settlement, no matter how unsatisfying, offers a possible resolution of the conflict. The alternative may be the collapse of the Ukrainian state and long-term confrontation between the West and Russia.”
Ukraine’s most fervent advocates assume anyone not ready to commit self-immolation on Kiev’s behalf must be a Russian agent. However, there are numerous good reasons for Washington to avoid the fight.
 
1) Russia isn’t Serbia, Iraq, Afghanistan or Libya.
While the Obama administration has resisted proposals for military confrontation with Moscow, a gaggle of ivory tower warriors has pushed to arm Ukraine, bring Kiev into NATO and station U.S. men and planes in Ukraine. These steps could lead to war.
Americans have come to expect easy victories. However, Russia would be no pushover. In particular, Moscow has a full range of nuclear weapons, which it could use to respond to allied conventional superiority.
2) Moscow has more at stake than the West in Ukraine.
Ukraine matters far more to Moscow than to Washington. Thus, the former will devote far greater resources and take far greater risks than the allies will. The Putin government already has accepted financial losses, economic isolation, human casualties and political hostility.
3) Alliances should enhance U.S. security, not provide foreign charity.
It’s impossible to blame Ukraine for wanting the West to protect it. But it makes no sense for the allies to do so. Adding Ukraine to NATO would dramatically degrade U.S. security by transforming a minor conflict irrelevant to Washington into a military dispute between America and Russia.
4) Security guarantees and alliance commitments often spread rather than deter conflict.
NATO advocates presume that membership would dissuade Russia from taking military action. Alas, deterrence often fails. In World War I alliances become transmission belts of war.
5) U.S. foreign policy should be based on the interest of America, not other nations.
The greatest distortion to U.S. foreign policy may come from ethnic lobbying. There’s nothing wrong with having affection for one’s ancestral homeland, like Ukraine. But U.S. foreign policy should be designed to benefit America, not other nations.
Some advocates for Kiev argue that Ukraine deserves support since France helped the American colonists win their independence. But France intervened in the American Revolution because Paris believed it was in France’s interest to weaken Britain. Going to war with Moscow would offer Americans no similar benefit.
6) It’s Europe’s turn to act.
If Ukraine matters geopolitically, it is to Europe. But most NATO members continue to shrink their militaries. It is time Europe did the military heavy lifting.
7) A negotiated settlement is the only solution.
Unfortunately, weaker parties often must make accommodations. During the Cold War, Finland maintained its domestic liberties by not antagonizing the Soviet Union.
The world is similarly unfair to Ukraine today. Military victory is unlikely. Stalemate threatens Ukraine with economic crisis.
The allies hope that sanctions will force Russia to concede. But Vladimir Putin won’t retreat voluntarily.
Massive public discontent could spark a popular revolution. However, foreign penalties more often cause people to rally around their governments. As of last month, Putin’s popularity was at 85 percent.
Moreover, the prospect of Weimar Russia should cause Ukrainians and their friends in the West to be careful what they wish for. A Russia in crisis likely would not be democratic and docile.
Moscow could say no. If so, it is better to find out now than to do so only after suffering through an extended Cold War lite.
The Ukraine-Russia conflict is an unnecessary tragedy. Thankfully, the ongoing battle doesn’t much threaten America. However, the only ending in something other than disaster is likely to come through negotiation. Instead of acting as a belligerent party, Washington should focus on shaping a diplomatic solution.

Doug Bandow is a senior fellow at the Cato Institute.

January 30, 2015 Posted by | politics international, Ukraine | Leave a comment

USA and Russia should not ignore Mikhail Gorbachev’s warning on the nuclear war danger of the Ukraine crisis

Atomic-Bomb-Smflag-UkraineGorbachev issues new warning of nuclear war over Ukraine http://www.dw.de/gorbachev-issues-new-warning-of-nuclear-war-over-ukraine/a-18182899 9 Jan 15 Former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev has warned that the crisis in Ukraine could lead to a major war, or even a nuclear war. In an interview with a German magazine, he criticized both Russia and the West. In an interview with the German weekly news magazine Spiegel, 83-year-old former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev said the crisis in Ukraine could lead to large-scale war in Europe or even a nuclear war. “We won’t survive if someone loses their nerves in the current tension.”

The Nobel Peace Prize laureate decried the “loss of trust” between Russia and the West as “catastrophic,” and said ties must be “defrosted.” Gorbachev accused the West and NATO of destroying the structure of European security by expanding its alliance. “No head of the Kremlin can ignore such a thing,” he said, adding that the US was unfortunately starting to establish a “mega empire.”

The man seen as a key player in the reunification of former East and West Germany in 1990 also accused Germany of interfering in Ukraine’s crisis, saying, “The new Germany wants its hands in every pie. There seems to be a lot of people who want to be involved in a new division of Europe. “Germany has already tried to expand its influence of power towards the East – in the Second World War. Does it really need another lesson?”

He said Western attempts to disempower Russian President Vladimir Putin and destabilize Russia were “very stupid and extremely dangerous.” He defended the Russian annexation of the Crimean Peninsula last year, but criticized the Russian leader’s authoritarian style of leadership. He said Russia needed free elections and “the participation of the people in free elections.

“It is simply not acceptable when someone such as the anti-corruption blogger and politician Alexei Navalny is under house arrest for speaking out.”

Recent warnings Gorbachev has warned of a nuclear war on a number of occasions in recent months. In an article for the Russian daily Rossiyskaya Gazeta, published on December 11, he warned: “The situation in Europe and the world is extremely alarming … the result of the events that took place in the last months is a catastrophic loss of trust in international relation,” which could lead to war. He urged Russia and the US as well as Russia and the EU to hold talks “without preconditions” and without fear of “losing face.”

“We must think of the future,” the former leader said.

diplomacy-not-bombsUkraine talks On Monday, January 12, the foreign ministers of Germany, France, Russia and Ukraine are set to meet in Berlin to launch another attempt to break the deadlock in the Ukraine conflict.

The ministers are expected to discuss the possibility of a summit of the four countries’ leaders in Kazakhstan, which Ukraine had suggested take place on January 15.

Regarding the fragile four-month-old ceasefire between Ukrainian forces and pro-Russian separatists, which has been broken on a number of occasions, German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter S

January 10, 2015 Posted by | politics international, Ukraine | Leave a comment

The nuclear dangers in Ukraine energy wars: don’t miss the full article!

What’s profitable for the nuclear industry in the US and Japan is toxic for the EU, particularly its more environmental and anti-nuclear member-nations including Germany and Austria, which will have no choice but to accept this legal precedent for continent-wide fracking and a revival of nuclear power.

highly-recommended

Ukraine Energy Wars Are Leading To  A Fukushima-Chernobyl Debacle In Europe 
By Yoichi Shimatsu. Rense1-5-15
 full article at http://www.rense.com/general96/ukraineenenerg.html
Clashes over energy in Ukraine between the West and Russia could prompt another Chernobyl-type accident or a catastrophe on the order of a Fukushima that will complete the nuclear devastation of the Northern Hemisphere. As news media fixate on conflicts over pipelines that supply Europe with Russian gas, another energy war is erupting over control of Ukraine’s nuclear-power industry, which generates half that nation’s electricity.Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenuk’s campaign for “energy independence” from Russian-sourced natural gas and nuclear fuel is not a study in cost control, economic security or even national sovereignty. His corporate-giveaway policies are actually a concession to Western energy interests in return for their influence over the EU, which can provide loans to avert an imminent default on Kiev’s debt to the IMF and World Bank. With an annual budget shortfall of $15 billion and a currency collapse, Ukraine is staggering under external sovereign debt estimated at between $140 and $200 billion.

Map-Ukraine-nuke-reactors

The IMF and World Bank have halted further transfers of loan tranches to Kiev, which is now unable to make payments on its gas imports from Russia. Kiev policymakers are therefore desperately looking to expand their nuclear industry. Unfortunately two recent accidents at its largest nuclear-power plant highlight the serious risks to a nation still grappling with the long-term effects of the 1986 Chernobyl meltdown. ……….
An ongoing series of nuclear-fuel deals between Toshiba-Westinghouse and Ukraine energy monopoly Energoatom is aimed at severing Kiev’s reliance on Russian technology and Kazakh uranium. The competition to supply the global market for MOX (mixed oxides of uranium and plutonium) is pitting a consortium of Westinghouse, AREVA and their US suppliers against their Moscow-based rival Rusatom and nuclear-engineering firm TVE. Continue reading

January 7, 2015 Posted by | politics international, safety, Ukraine | Leave a comment

Very worrying questions about the safety of Ukraine’s nuclear reactors

Has the Largest Nuclear Plant In Europe – Located In Ukraine – Suffered a Major Accident? December 31, 2014 by WashingtonsBlog

Preface by Washington’s Blog:  Investigative journalism requires asking questions in the face of potential cover-ups.  Guest writer George Eliason is asking question, and admitting both that (1) the reports are unconfirmed and (2) he doesn’t have the necessary expertise to render an authoritative opinion on this issue.

But since the stakes are so high, it is worth asking the question.

By George Eliason, an American journalist living in Ukraine.

Over the last week more publications including Zero Hedge have started reporting on the possibility of a still developing nuclear problem at the largest nuclear plant in Europe. This news has been widely circulated in Eastern Europe over the last few weeks.

Map-Ukraine-nuke-reactors

The problem in Ukraine has been and remains verification. Ukrainian sources have not been forthcoming. When this first occurred I was contacted through a 2nd party and told directly after the officially reported transformer incident a radiation spike was observed in Crimea which is 140km away from Zaporozhye nuclear power plant. This spike was small against background radiation but noticeable on a geiger counter. I was also given hacked files of the emergency conversation that happened at the plant that day. They are included at the bottom of the article. The closeness to what is coming to light makes them too close to be ignored………

Ukraine reported an incident (non-nuclear) which was a transformer short circuiting, not an accident which is used for radiological issues. This was carried across the nuclear industry forums that talked about it. The case was closed on that basis.

As reported at Zero Hedge-Two days ago we reported of the odd coincidence of a 2nd emergency shutdown at Ukraine’s Zaporozhye Nuclear reactor – Europe’s largest nuclear power plant following our earlier fears of disinformation. Today, we get information of a leaked report sourced from three different place – unconfirmed for now (but RT is trying to verify) - that Ukrainian nuclear scientists misled the public and a radioactive leak has been detected - citing the country’s emergency services claiming that levels of radiation are 16.3 times the legally permitted norm.

What does 16.3 times allowable (legal) mean? In a pre-Fukashima world if any nuclear plant in the US were to report 1X allowable radiation/ steam (contamination) release every major publication in the country would be focused on that event.

Allowable release at nuclear power plants falls under a Zero tolerance policy. At Zaporozhye power plant background radiation before the event registered at 10-12 counts per minute on a geiger counter. At 50 counts it does not cause an alarm but is something to monitor.

At 100 counts the threshold for alarm is reached and radiological personal protective gear might be warranted. Zaporozhye is well beyond that threshold now………..

What We Know about Zaporozhye

We now know that radiation was released and reports of a steam blow off are starting to surface. Unfortunately this is in line with information I was told about a fire in the cooling system and a contaminated side steam pipe burst inside the containment (their word sarcophagus). We know people that have left the area have reported that iodine tablets are being handed out to people that live close to the plant.

We know that the plant shut down all social media for plant workers so they would not talk about the incident. This was a highly unusual move for a transformer problem.

A second reactor(#6) has been shutdown at the same plant and restarted at the same plant on December 28th or has it. This linked document shows that unit #6 is still down on December 29th.

A third at South Ukraine Nuclear Power plant which has been testing Westinghouse fuel assemblies is in an abnormally long shutdown. Normal is 30-40 days. This is predicted at 120 days.

This is not the first time this year Zaporozhye had unscheduled shutdowns.

In the spring Pravy Sektor tried unsuccessfully to storm nuclear power plants 3 times. Later the government of Ukraine ordered that they guard nuclear material, nuclear facilities, and even nuclear waste through their troops in the Ukrainian National Guard.

As surreal as it sounds Poroshenko’s government put the terrorists that tried to take nuclear plants by force in charge…………http://www.washingtonsblog.com/2014/12/largest-nuclear-plant-europe-located-ukraine-suffered-major-accident.html

January 3, 2015 Posted by | safety, Ukraine | Leave a comment

Secretive information on Ukraine’s nuclear reactors feeds fears that all is not well there

ukrainemap‘Second Chernobyl’ may be underway in Ukraine. Bobby 1’s Blog 30 dec 14 Denis Pushilin, a pro-separatist leader in southeast Ukraine, has said the Ukraine faces a ‘second Chornobyl’ due to Ukraine’s decision to use nuclear fuel supplied by Westinghouse for its Soviet-built nuclear power plants.

He said radiation has increased to 14 times the acceptable norm at the Zaporizhia nuclear plant. This is the largest nuclear power plant in Europe, and the fifth largest in the world.

The Russian news agency Interfax reported that in a statement on December 28, Pushilin said Ukraine faces “a second Chornobyl” due to Kyiv’s decision to use nuclear fuel supplied by Westinghouse — a reference to the deadly 1986 nuclear power plant accident that spead radioactivity over parts of Europe.

Pushilin said that “currently the level of radiation is 14 times higher than the acceptable norm” in the area around the Zaporizhzhya plant and that the problem started November 28 “after an unsuccessful attempt to replace rods in the Russian-made third block (reactor) with the product of the American company Western house.”……….

it seems that all 6 reactors will have their fuel rods replaced with Westinghouse fuel at some point. Crimea is nearby Zaporizhia, and it is now part of Russia. Irradiation of Russian citizens, especially due to a switch in fuel supplier from Russia to Westinghouse, would add even more tension to the Ukraine crisis, which is already threatening to lead to global nuclear war.

The reason Ukraine is switching to Westinghouse fuel is political. Russia has already agreed to supply its fuel to Ukraine, and there are no sanctions involved. Ukraine has become a vassal state to the West after the coup earlier this year. It is being used as a pawn, and a place to deploy missiles near the Russian border, in an encirclement strategy by the US and NATO.

In 2012, during a routine inspection, Energoatom reported that Westinghouse’s assemblies had structural damage. It had to swap those for Russian-made fuel assemblies, which the utility estimated cost it $170 million.

After a suit threatened by Energoatom, Westinghouse tried to make good on its deal and produced modified fuel rods for the Russian built VVER-440 reactors. These, too, were found defective………..http://optimalprediction.com/wp/second-chernobyl-may-be-underway-in-ukraine/

January 3, 2015 Posted by | safety, Ukraine | Leave a comment

Did America’s CIA orchestrate the coup in Ukraine?

flag-UkraineOliver Stone Says Ukrainian Coup Was Directed by CIA http://sputniknews.com/art_living/20141231/1016415810.html US film maker claims he is currently engaged in production of a documentary about Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovych. WASHINGTON, December 31 (Sputnik) – US filmmaker Oliver Stone is currently engaged in production of a documentary about Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovych, who fled the country following the February coup, according to the post on his Facebook page published Tuesday.

“[I] Interviewed Viktor Yanukovych 4 hours in Moscow for new English language documentary produced by Ukrainians. He [Yanukovych] was the legitimate President of Ukraine until he suddenly wasn’t on February 22 of this year. Details to follow in the documentary,” Stone said.

According to the renowned filmmaker, in the aftermath of the coup, “the West has maintained the dominant narrative of ‘Russia in Crimea’ whereas the true narrative is ‘USA in Ukraine.’ The truth is not being aired in the West. It’s a surreal perversion of history that’s going on once again, as in Bush pre-Iraq ‘WMD’ [Weapons of Mass Destruction] campaign.”

Stone also said that the shooters, who killed killed 14 police officers, wounded some 85, and killed 45 protesting civilians during the clashes in Kiev, were outside “third party agitators.”

“Many witnesses, including Yanukovych and police officials, believe these foreign elements were introduced by pro-Western factions with CIA fingerprints on it,” he stated.

Stone concluded by expressing hope that the truth about the Ukrainian coup would come out in the West soon “in time to stop further insanity.”

Former Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovych was ousted late February following mass rallies in Kiev, triggered by the president’s refusal to sign a European Union association agreement. Yanukovych fled the country for Russia, while the protests led to the violent unrest in Ukraine, that dramatically escalated in mid-April, when Kiev launched a military operation against independence supporters in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions.

January 2, 2015 Posted by | politics international, Ukraine, USA | Leave a comment

Confusing information over Ukraine’s Zaporozhye Nuclear Power Plant ‘s radioactive leak

Radioactive leak at major Ukrainian nuclear plant – report Rt News, : December 30, 2014 A radioactive leak has been detected at Ukraine’s Zaporozhye Nuclear Power Plant, the largest in Europe, a media report says, citing the country’s emergency services. Ukrainian officials have denied the report.

LifeNews published what it claims is a leaked report by the State Emergency Service of Ukraine, which denies an earlier assessment by the plant’s authorities that the radiation at the facility is equal to the natural background following an incident on Sunday.

RT is trying to verify the report………..

Two documents released by LifeNews appear to show that the plant’s officials put deliberately misleading information on their website. The documents – both addressed to the head of the regional emergency services – state that radiation levels at the plant on Sunday and Monday were 16.8 times higher than the legally permitted norm.

By Monday, the levels had slightly increased – growing from 16.3 to 16.8 times higher, and Unit 6 was still shut down, the report said, contradicting the plant’s statements that the problem had been fixed and that the plant was operating normally.

On Sunday, one reactor at the plant was automatically shut down after a glitch, becoming the second halt in operations in recent weeks. The reactor was running at 40 percent of nominal power, the plant’s official website said, adding that radiation at the facility being at the level of 8-12 microroentgens an hour……..

Zaporozhye nuclear power plant is one of the four nuclear power plants in the country, which together supply a large part of Ukraine’s energy needs. The Zaporozhye plant alone, Europe’s largest, supplies at least one-fifth of the country’s power needs. It is the world’s fifth-largest nuclear power plant. t.com/news/218807-ukraine-nuclear-plant-leak/

December 31, 2014 Posted by | secrets,lies and civil liberties, Ukraine | 2 Comments

Dangers in Ukraine’s importation of inappropriate nuclear fuel from Westinghouse

safety-symbol-Smflag-UkraineRussia: Ukraine’s Import of US Nuclear Fuel Risky abc news, MOSCOW — Dec 30, 2014,  Russia says Ukraine’s deal to buy U.S.-made nuclear fuel for its Soviet-built reactors could trigger a nuclear accident.

Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk of Ukraine announced Tuesday that his nation has reached a deal on nuclear fuel deliveries with Westinghouse to reduce dependence on Russian supplies.

Russia’s Foreign Ministry deplored the move as a “dangerous experiment that threatens safety and health of the Ukrainian citizens and peoples of Europe.” It said nuclear fuel produced by the U.S. company doesn’t quite fit Soviet-built nuclear reactors that Ukraine has.

The ministry said Ukrainian authorities must take a responsible approach to nuclear safety, or risk disasters such as the 1986 Chernobyl one, which was a result of a flawed Soviet reactor design coupled with serious mistakes made by the plant operators……http://abcnews.go.com/International/wireStory/russia-ukraines-import-us-nuclear-fuel-risky-27909998

December 31, 2014 Posted by | safety, Ukraine | Leave a comment

Talk in Ukraine about reviving nuclear weapons

exclamation-Smflag-UkraineNuclear weapons revival talked about by Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko Inquisitr.com Dec. 14, 2014,The possibility of Urkaine’s nuclear weapons programs being revived has been discussed ever since it was claimed that Russia’s tactical nuclear weapons may have been moved into the Crimean Peninsula. Recently, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko answered questions on whether Kiev is willing to bring back their nuclear status in order to survive the confrontation with Vladimir Putin.

 In a related report by the Inquisitr, the Russian nuclear navy is currently being modernized at a rapid pace, and it’s believed a suspected Russian submarine may have been lurking in the English Channel. The threat of Russian nuclear weapons also has the Pentagon considering deploying ground-based U.S. nuclear cruise missiles to Europe.

Earlier this year, Minister of Defense of Ukraine Valerii Heletei claimed that Russia was threatening Ukraine with tactical nuclear weapons.

“I am drawing attention to Russia’s threatening Ukraine with the use of tactical nuclear weapons,” Heletei noted. “If we fail to defend Ukraine today, if the world does not help us, we will have to get back to the creation of such weapons, which will defend us from Russia.”

This alleged threat led to the discussion of restoring Ukraine’s nuclear weapons program by Heletei, but only if “the world does not help us.” Recently, both the House and the Senate in the U.S. Congress passed legislation that promised lethal aid to Ukraine. According to the Kiev Post, when Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko spoke about Ukraine’s nuclear weapons programs, he declared that Kiev would not pursue that option………..http://www.inquisitr.com/1677316/ukraine-nuclear-weapons-revival-talked-about-by-ukrainian-president-petro-poroshenko/#2ZO69ZkEBcQho87h.99

December 15, 2014 Posted by | Ukraine, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Study into effects of chronic exposure to radiation in food: Chernobyl wolves as an example

text ionisingECOVIEWS: Chernobyl wolves reveal radiation’s impact, Tuscaloosa News, December 5, 2014 How do scientists determine what the long-term impacts would be to humans living in a radiation-contaminated environment? An ecological study of wolves in the Ukraine may provide the answer……….

Not being shot, trapped or indirectly affected by humans is the upside for wolves occupying the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone. But what complications might they face from chronic exposure to radiation in the food they eat and where they sleep? Doctors Jim Beasley and Stacey Lance, research ecologists from the University of Georgia’s Savannah River Ecology Lab, say that whereas radiation concentrations immediately after the accident were known to be “extremely high and dangerous, we don’t know what levels of radiation the wolves or other animals are exposed to now.” The researchers and their students are trained to study how human activities and disturbances affect the ecology of wildlife populations.
The CEZ wolves can serve as a proxy for determining the risks to human safety in low-level radiation areas. Among the questions being asked is whether cancer rates in the wolves are above normal levels, which can be determined indirectly with genetic studies. The researchers will also estimate wolf population sizes and distribution patterns across a gradient from high to low levels of contamination to look for demographic impacts. The findings can be applied to how humans might be affected……….http://www.tuscaloosanews.com/article/20141205/NEWS/141209768/1291?p=1&tc=pg

December 8, 2014 Posted by | radiation, Ukraine | Leave a comment

Ukraine government had to admit to nuclear accident at Zaporizhzhya power plant

Nuclear Accident In Ukraine: Largest Nuke Plant In Europe Shut Down, But ‘No Threat,’ Gov’t Claims, INQUISITR, 3 Dec 14  A nuclear accident at a power plant in Ukraine, the largest nuclear power plant in Europe, shut the plant down last Friday, but the Ukraine government did not reveal the alarming mishap until Wednesday, claiming that the accident posed “no threat” to the public from radiation.

Map-Ukraine-nuke-reactors

 The Zaporizhzhya nuclear power plant, which is also the fifth-largest nuclear plant in the world, consists of six nuclear reactors, the first of which went on line in 1985, with the sixth finally becoming operational 10 years later.

The nuclear plant is located just 120 miles from the war-torn eastern Ukraine region of Donetsk, a stronghold of pro-Russian separatist rebels who have battled the Ukraine government in heavy fighting for much of 2014.

Donetsk is the region where on July 17, Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 was shot down by, it is widely believed, a rebel anti-aircraft missile, killing all 298 people on board.

Nuclear experts have raised the alarm that the power plant could be vulnerable to artillery fire from the war zone nearby………http://www.inquisitr.com/1652271/nuclear-accident-in-ukraine/

December 5, 2014 Posted by | incidents, Ukraine | 1 Comment

New evidence shows connection between radiation exposure and aggressive thyroid cancer

thyroid-cancer-papillaryhighly-recommendedAggressive Thyroid Cancers Linked to Radiation Exposure http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/834000 Roxanne Nelson October 28, 2014 Researchers who have followed the children and adolescents exposed to radioactive fallout from the the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear power plant accident have highlighted the fact that the thyroid cancers seen in these individuals are particularly aggressive. They say their work has implications for individuals affected by the 2011 nuclear reactor incidents in Fukushima, Japan.

The study is published online October 28 in Cancer.

The research team screened nearly 12,000 individuals from Belarus several times over a course of 9 years. Study participants were all under age 18 years when they were exposed to the Chernobyl radioactive fallout.

All individuals underwent up to three cycles of thyroid screening from 1997 to 2008. Radioactive iodine-131 (I-131) thyroid doses were estimated from individual thyroid activity measurements taken within 2 months after the accident, along with dosimetric data from questionnaires.

A total of 158 thyroid cancers were diagnosed in the 11,664-person cohort during 3 rounds of screening, which were conducted at roughly 2-year intervals.

The researchers found that higher I-131 thyroid doses were associated with higher frequency of solid or diffuse sclerosing variants of thyroid cancer (P < 0.01), as well as histologic features of cancer aggressiveness, such as lymphatic vessel invasion, intrathyroidal infiltration, and multifocality (all P < .03).

First author Lydia Zablotska, MD, PhD, associate professor in the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics at the University of California, San Francisco, explained that her group has previously shown that radioactive iodine exposure significantly increases the risk for thyroid cancer in a dose-dependent manner. But this new study demonstrates that exposure to I-131 is associated with distinct clinical features indicating more aggressive tumors.

“Our study has very important implications for clinical practice,” Dr Zablotska told Medscape Medical News, especially as they relate to radiation exposure that resulted from the 2011 nuclear reactor incidents in Fukushima, Japan. Continue reading

October 29, 2014 Posted by | health, Japan, Ukraine | Leave a comment

Funds running out for completion of massively expensive cover over crumbling Chernobyl nuclear reactor

Funding woes delay new Chernobyl cover, DW 17 Oct 14  The casing around the ruined nuclear reactor at Chernobyl is crumbling, causing a renewed radioactive contamination risk. A new cover for the site is under construction – but the project is running out of funding. “There’s no precedent for this anywhere in the world,” Jochen Flasbarth said. “Of course there is uncertainty.”

The German Ministry of the Environment’s senior civil servant was talking about the New Safe Confinement – a new protective cover that is to be built over the stricken reactor at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant in Ukraine: 100 meters high, 165 meters long, built at a safe distance from the still radioactive ruin.

The cover will slide over the reactor on rails. It will be three times as large as St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome – if it is finished. But at the moment there is no money – that’s the “uncertainty” Flasbarth was talking about.

Chernobyl-tomb-14

There will be a shortfall of 600 million euros by the end of the year. Construction is proving to be more expensive than expected, and funding more difficult to obtain. A Ukrainian government construction freeze now threatens the project.

New containment, new money

Flasbarth, who is responsible for energy issues at his ministry, intends to speak with his counterparts from the G7 Group on Nuclear Issues in Bonn in mid-October. The G8 – as it was known before Russia was ejected from the group earlier in 2014 – had promised years ago to help Ukraine build the containment system. Now new money is required……….

The total damage has been estimated at 180 billion dollars. The area around the stricken reactor is still highly contaminated, and the concrete sarcophagus poured over the reactor in a rush after the accident has become unstable.

Years of effort

That’s why a French consortium has spent the last few years building the new protective cover. One part is finished, and a second is still being worked on. Meanwhile, Reactor 4 is crumbling – and threatening to expose 200 tons of highly radioactive material to the environment, including the destroyed fuel rods.

The removal of these materials can begin only when the New Safe Confinement is finished, which means over 30 years will have passed since the accident. No one now expects the construction to be finished next year as planned……..http://www.dw.de/funding-woes-delay-new-chernobyl-cover/a-17997493

 

October 18, 2014 Posted by | safety, Ukraine | Leave a comment

Ukraine could make a nuclear bomb, or a “dirty” bomb

flag-UkraineUkraine may create nuclear bomb in 10 years — experts   Russian experts say Ukrainian Defence Minister’s provocative statement on creation of weapons of mass destruction should be taken seriously MOSCOW, September 17. /ITAR-TASS/. Ukraine which has large uranium deposits, nuclear power plants and the ability to enrich nuclear fuel as well as enterprises which produced ballistic missiles in the Soviet times may create a nuclear bomb in ten years, Izvestia daily reported on Wednesday with reference to the opinion of Russian experts.

“Ukrainian Defence Minister Valery Geletei’s statement that Ukraine may regain the status of a nuclear power and create weapons of mass destruction is a provocation, but this should be taken seriously,” the daily quoted deputy chairman of Russia’s lower house State Duma defence committee Frants Klintsevich as saying, noting that “This cannot be forgotten that science in Ukraine has always been developed and there won’t be any problems creating a nuclear bomb.”

Klintsevich recalled that the neighbouring country had 17 nuclear power units not designed for enrichment.

“If they assign several nuclear power units for the purpose and will get down to resolve this task the process will take quite a long period of time. But they will cope with it for ten years,” the lawmaker believed, noting that “It is very strange if Europe will not give any response to such statements. Double standards became normal for them and this may end deplorably for all.”………

Meanwhile, Ukraine has Tochka U, a tactical missile system which uses conventional ballistic missiles with a fire range of 120 kilometres and more that can carry nuclear warheads, the daily recalled. Meanwhile, according to international classification the so-called ‘dirty bomb’, the simplest variant of weapons of mass destruction that contaminates the territory with radioactive materials, belongs to nuclear weapons.

“If the Ukrainian president decides to create nuclear weapons, ‘the dirty bomb’ with conventional explosives and radioactive element which can be generated at Chernobyl nuclear power plant can be produced literally in a few days,” Klenov said with confidence.

On September 14, Ukrainian Defence Minister Valery Geletei stated the possibility to develop nuclear weapons, if the West refuses to help Ukraine: “If we cannot protect [Ukraine] today, if the world does not help us, we will have to return to creation of these weapons to protect ourselves from Russia.”

This is quite illustrative that “officials of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and the US ambassador in Ukraine refused to comment on possible after-effects of Ukraine’s turning in a nuclear power. http://en.itar-tass.com/world/749875

September 18, 2014 Posted by | Ukraine, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Kiev threatens to restart nuclear weapons program

flag-Ukraine‘Inmates running the asylum’: Kiev threatens to restart nuclear weapons program RT.com September 15, 2014 Kiev’s promise to restart its nuclear weapons program if it doesn’t get enough support from the West is completely insane, be it real or just an empty threat, political commentator Daniel Patrick Welch told RT.

“If we cannot protect Ukraine today, if the world doesn’t help us, we will have to go back to the development of nuclear weapons, which will protect us from Russia,” Ukrainian Defense Minister Valery Geletey said in an interview with Ukrainian TV, also claiming that NATO members have already started supplying Kiev with conventional weapons.

NATO members start supplying weapons to Kiev – Ukrainian Defense Minister  ……http://rt.com/op-edge/187772-ukraine-nuclear-program-us/

September 17, 2014 Posted by | politics international, Ukraine | Leave a comment

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