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JUNE 2013


Bulletin of Nuclear Veterans and Children Lead Story Headline

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MoD:“We Got Away With it. Just!” The Ionising Radiation Pensions Appeal Tribunal before Judge Hugh Stubbs has found that only one of 14 nuclear veterans was entitled to a a war pension even though evidence was produced proving that large areas of Christmas Island were contaminated after bomb blasts.

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Judge Stubbs concluded that there was “very limited exposure to radiation on Christmas Island” for the majority of servicemen, the only exception being soldiers deployed in forward positions shortly after the detonations. The tribunal ruled that the widow of RAF man Peter Williams, who died of pancreatic cancer, should be given a pension after dosimeter records showed he was exposed to radiation The decision is another body blow for thousands of nuclear veterans and their offspring who have suffered a catalogue of illnesses since taking part in the 1950s bomb tests. They have been denied compensation even though the tribunal produced damning evidence of radioactive fallout and rainfall over Christmas Island after the blasts despite repeated denials by successive UK governments. An official document first uncovered by fissionline showing that the Grapple Y explosion caused a thunderstorm over inhabited areas was accepted by Stubbs although he denied that this was socalled rainout. He also accepted official Met Office reports proving that winds blew fallout toward areas where thousands of men were mustered. The tribunal recorded the comments of one panicked

official as he realized the fallout was heading toward the island: “Blow me the (wind) shifted 30 degrees and came awfully close to the island...but we got away with it. Just.” Judge Stubbs also criticized AWE officials for “confirmation bias” in an environmental report about fallout on the island as well as suggesting that weather patterns were not properly monitored. But he didn’t believe the radiation dosage the men may have received was sufficient to cause the illnesses they complained of. Neil Sampson, partner at Rosenblatts solicitors which represented two people at the tribunal said: “It seems to me that it just cannot be correct that the test programmes of other countries caused their servicemen to be exposed, but the UK tests did not. In other countries the obligation to compensate is accepted.” The decision was a huge relief to the Ministry of Defence which has spent millions defending claims from veterans. A spokesman said: “We are still examining the details of the Tribunal’s decision but basically we won…”

Very Worshipful Judge Stubbs The Judge who dashed the hopes of thousands of struggling nuclear veterans by refusing them pension payouts is one of the UK’s top Freemasons in charge of dishing out millions to sick masons and their families. Judge Hugh Stubbs is a “Very Worshipful” member of the secretive organisation which means he is the top dog of his Masonic lodge presiding over

“ritual and ceremony” and chairing all the main business. He is also president of the cash -rich Masonic Samaritan Fund set up to support members in medical need. In recent times it has extended the support to include those in need of dental treatment, respite care and mobility equipment. It has also paid for at least one member’s wife to receive IVF treatment and provided expensive facilities for another member’s care dog. In the year up to 2012, support was approved to 987 people at a cost of £5.3million. Almost half the recipients have been widows and dependents. Since it was set up in 1990 the charity has provided grants for 12,500 individuals handing out more than £54million in the process.

shipful Judge receiving a cheque for a very handsome £5,418,004 from the West Lancashire lodge, while on the right he is shown accepting a cheque for a more modest £10,000 from the Cyprus lodge. Judge Stubbs described the donations as “fantastic.”

The photo on the left shows the Very Wor-

Rambo Shoots Himself in the Foot

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Former Defence Minister Lord Lewis Mooney (below) had egg all over his face this week after the Stubbs tribunal admitted that areas where men were stationed on Christmas Island were contaminated with fallout. Mooney, as m in iste r for veterans’ affairs always insisted that no service-

man was affected by radiation exposure. In a TV interview in 2003, Mooney, nicknamed Rambo by colleagues, said: “There is absolutely no evidence at all that there was any exposure to radiation on the island.” In the same programme for Welsh channel S4C he also insisted that the prevailing winds were always blowing away from the island when the detonations occurred. But Judge Hugh Stubbs blew his arguments apart in his summing up at the Appeals Tribunal on Monday (May 7, 2013). He ruled: “Local fallout was recorded from the stem area (of three detonations) below the main

cloud and carried by wind or rainfall from lowlevel clouds. He further ruled that, “particles generating alpha ionizing radiation were forward areas,” following two balloon detonations. Stubbs also admitted that “risks were taken with the meteorological conditions” with wind directions coming “close to the planned safety limits.” In the programme, Mooney was interviewed by former RAF man Peter Williams whose widow was the only one to be awarded a pension by the Stubbs tribunal.


How They Covered up a Cover-up A secret file was opened by the Medical Research Council to monitor reports of the deadly disease among servicemen. But as more and more cases were added to the list MRC members, comprising some of the most eminent doctors in the country, began to have serious misgivings about the official government line that no men had been exposed to radiation. One MRC bigwig was so worried about an inquest into the death of a RN officer that he sent a handwritten note to the man’s commanding officer insisting that the Admiralty “Keep us out of this.” (see bottom of montage). The matter was so sensitive the file was soon closed and locked away for more than 50 years. fissionline gained access to it this year only to discover it was so toxic that a clumsy attempt had been made to obliterate the words ‘Christmas Island’ from the document, (see top of montage).

It was the spring of 1958 and already there were disturbing reports emanating from Christmas Island about sicknesses among the 4,000-plus servicemen stationed there at the time. Relatives back in the UK were demanding information, while alarming stories began to appear in newspapers about fighting and even riots among the squaddies over appalling living conditions. But what terrified the Top Brass and the politicians most was the steady trickle of reports about much more serious matters. Like leukaemia. The very word was enough to instill panic in politicians and military commanders They knew the burgeoning CND movement would have a field day if word got out about excessive incidences of the disease. The subject had the power to halt Britain’s entire nuclear test programme...and that was something that could not be tolerated. So the government launched a cover-up.

Hot Pizza ‘n Fission Chips Please! fissionliner Martin Forwood, spokesman for Cumbrians Opposed to a Radioactive Environment (CORE), pulled off a major publicity coup last week when he revealed his home-made radioactive “Pizza Cumbriana” had been sent to a low level waste facility. The pizza, created eight years ago from radioactive mud and seaweed collected on beaches on the Cumbrian coast, was delivered to the Italian embassy to highlight concerns about plans by Italy to ship irradiated

fuel rods to Sellafield for reprocessing. An analysis of the material showed the topping contained levels of radioactivity illegal in Italy. The pizza was quickly ‘condemned’ and was removed to the Atomic Energy Research Establishment at Didcot. Last week it was transported by road to the low level waste disposal unit at Drigg, Cumbria.

been exposing the sins of Sellafield for decades. Martin said: “Taking the pizza to Drigg is proof that some of the coastal areas are nuclear wastelands

The hot scoop was picked up by both local and national newspapers, much to the delight of Martin and his wife Janine Allis-Cooper who have

Ken McGinley To Visit Fukushima British nuclear veteran Ken McGinley has been invited to Japan to meet with survivors of the Fukushima disaster. The invitation came after McGinley, who witnessed five nuclear tests on Christmas Island in 1958, spoke with Fukushima representatives in Manchester. Takafumi Honda, of the World Network For Saving Children From Radiation, said: “Mr McGinley will be welcomed in Fukushima with open arms

because of his past experience in meeting with the victims of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The Fukushima victims can learn a lot from what has happened to the British nuclear test veterans and their children and grandchildren.” Ken said: “I have visited Japan on several occasions and I am looking forward to going back. I believe I can help the Fukushima fallout victims

because I know exactly what they are up against.”

fissionline TIME FOR THE TRUTH, THE WHOLE TRUTH AND NOTHING BUT THE TRUTH. Once again a court has decided that servicemen who witnessed bomb tests were not exposed to harmful levels of ionizing radiation. The latest decision by Judge Hugh Stubbs’s Pension Appeal Tribunal, is even more puzzling than the rest. On the one hand he agreed that fallout did indeed reach Christmas Island; that the wind blew the fallout over the island; and that it rained soon after the blast (in the case of Grapple Y). But he was of the opinion that none of this would have affected the vast majority of troops. If that is so why have the British Ministry of Defence and the government so assiduously covered it up for 50 years? Why were they so terrified of reports of leukaemia among the servicemen? Why did they lie about the wind and the rain? If they had nothing to hide why didn’t they just admit it? The denials that nothing untoward occurred simply beggar belief and serve only to fuel deep suspicions over the conduct of the bomb tests. A full and rigorous inquiry into all aspects of this dark corner of British history is now the only way this matter can be resolved. Both Conservative and Labour leaders promised to hold an inquiry if “reasonable doubts” could be raised that men were harmed. Those doubts have now been demonstrated and they cry out for answers. The dwindling band of nuclear veterans and their children and grandchildren deserve nothing less. Primary Business Phone: 555-555-5555 Address Fax: 555-555-5555 just keeps growing. On one day alone we added fissionline Your Address Email: 2 list. Line Don’t be left out! Join fissionline today. Contact: Your Address Line 3

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MoD: All Smoke and Mirrors Remember the TV programme ‘Stars in Their Eyes’ where an ordinary punter disappears behind a door only to re-emerge in a cloud of smoke a moment later transformed into a celebrity? I always thought a similar metamorphosis happened to Tony Blair after he assumed power back in 1997. Blair had always supported the nuclear veterans when he was in Opposition, but as soon as he became Prime Minister he changed his mind. He visited the MoD...then Freddie Mercury loo- unceremoniously dumped kalike emerges from the veterthe smoke.

ans...and very soon after bombed the bejesus out of Bosnia. He later embarked on a whistlestop tour of the benighted region strutting about and punching the air Freddie Mercury style wherever he went. Nick Harvey the Lib Dem defence spokesman underwent a similar transformation when he was given the defence brief after the coalition came to power at the last election. He had always been one of the most vociferous supporters of the nuclear veterans, but after a visit to the MoD he vanished faster than a bishop caught in a bordello. I was reminded. of all this when I read one of the more interesting passages of the 139-page Stubbs Pensions Tribunal report. Most of the report was the usual whitewash and hair-splitting beloved by experts from both sides of the debate. As far as I am concerned there is more than enough evidence to give the veterans the benefit of the doubt and it follows, therefore, that they should be compensated.. The arguments for and against were all pretty old hat and I must admit I had to stifle a yawn. Until I came to a passage describing how the lawyers for the nuclear veterans

had to undergo “developed vetting” before being allowed to view certain MoD documents. Judge Stubbs tells how after undergoing this rigorous procedure, where every detail of business and private lives are minutely scrutinized by the security services, the lawyers were granted access to the hallowed inner sanctums of the Ministry of Defence for the viewing. Picture the scene: deep leather chairs, a long highly-polished mahogany table, gleaming brass table lamps with green shades, a coffee pot burbling in the corner; the discreet ticking of a clock.. Then the big moment: attendants arrive with a stack of the brown and red A4 sized folders marked Top Secret. Of course we’ll never know what super-sensitive secrets were revealed; the legal team are bound hand and foot by the Official Secrets Act. But the nuke vet’s lawyers, I’m sure, are far too savvy to fall for the MoD’s smoke and mirrors shenanigans. So I have dismissed scurrilous reports that one of the lawyers was seen moonwalking back to his office, while the other was heard playing ‘My Little Stick of Blackpool Rock’ on his ukulele in the bath.


Bulletin of Nuclear Veterans and Children