Cold War Remnant: Cancer for Baby Boomers

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Walter Shapiro over at Politics Daily reports on the consequences of atmospheric nuclear bomb tests in the late fifties and early sixties. During that period the Atomic Energy Commission detonated more than 100 nuclear bombs in the atmosphere over its Nevada Test Site, just 65 miles from Las Vegas.

The winds carried Strontium-90, Iodine-129 and other lethal particles across a broad swath of the country. Infants who were bottle-fed, which was then considered the modern approach, were particularly vulnerable to the Strontium-90 that ended up in cows’ milk.

50 years ago, the angry scientists and the ban-the-bomb protesters were right – nuclear testing was dangerous for children and other living things. “Maybe at the beginning of bomb testing, people weren’t sure how much this would spread across the globe,” Mangano said. “But by the mid-1950s, after dozens of bombs had been tested, they noticed the radiation levels going up and up in the milk and the water. They knew that this was trouble.”

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