Poison DUst: A New Look at U.S. Radioactive Weapons



During the current Iraq War the U.S. use of radioactive DU weapons increased from 375 tons used in 1991 to 2200 tons. Geiger counter readings at sites in downtown Baghdad record radiation levels 1,000 and 2,000 times higher than background radiation. The Pentagon has bombed, occupied, tortured and contaminated Iraq. Millions of Iraqis are affected. Over one million U.S. soldiers have rotated into Iraq. Today, half of the 697,000 U.S. Gulf War troops from the 1991 war have reported serious medical problems and a significant increase in birth defects among their newborn children.

The effects on the Iraqi population are far greater. Many other countries and U.S. communities near DU weapons plants, testing facilities, bases and arsenals have also been exposed to this radioactive material which has a half-life of 4.4 billions years

© 2005, DVD 84 min. Available at Amazon.com






You thought they came home safely from the war. They didn’t.

Poison DUst tells the story of three young men from New York who could not get answers for their mysterious ailments after their National Guard unit’s 2003 tour of duty in Iraq. A mother reveals her fears about the extent of her child’s birth defects and the growing disability of her young husband – a vet.

Filmmaker Sue Harris skillfully weaves, through interviews, their journey from personal trauma, to ‘positive’ test results for uranium poisoning, to learning the truth about radioactive Depleted Uranium weapons. Their frustrations in dealing with the Veterans Administration’s silence becomes outrage as they realize that thousands of other GI’s have the same symptoms.

Veterans, anti-war organizers, environmentalists and health care providers will find this wake-up call to today’s GIs invaluable.

Today more than 1/3 of all 1991 Gulf war vets are on VA Disability Benefits. Meanwhile U.S. use of radioactive DU weapons has increased six-fold from 1991 to Gulf War II!

Scientists expose the Pentagon Cover-Up!

Poison DUst includes a powerful indictment of past U.S. use of radioactive weapons….

The U.S. military now admits that it deliberately radiated its own soldiers, known as the “Atomic Veterans,” during the Cold War. This documentary exposes U.S. use of radioactive weapons on peoples in not only Iraq, but the Marshall Islands; Vieques, Puerto Rico; Meihyang-Ri, South Korea; and Yugoslavia.

Poison DUst mixes interviews with soldiers with experts such as Dr. Helen Caldicott, Dr. Michio Kaku, and Dr. Rosalie Bertell explaining how DU contamination spreads and how residue from exploded DU shells radiates people.

A growing global resistance is expressed by former Attorney General Ramsey Clark, scientists and activists from Vieques, Puerto Rico, by New York Daily News reporter Juan Gonzalez, Sara Flounders of the International Action Center’s DU Education Project and Major Doug Rokke – the former U.S. Army DU Project head.

Poison DUst is an important educational tool in building the movement to stop this horror.

To arrange to have a public screening posted here, email
Peoples Video Network
; To arrange speakers, call 212-633-6646

Credits (full cast & crew):

Music by Movement in Motion, Catherine Moon, the Fourth Wall Players, Pam Parker & Jobari Parker-Namdar.
Directed and Edited by Sue Harris and the Peoples Video Network.
Final edits by Michael J. Sudyn, Flying Dreams.
Produced by the Depleted Uranium Education Project.

Poison DUst is in modular form

and can be shown by chapter. The following are chapters for the 84 minute version, listed by title and length:
Beginning: 5 minutes; Lies: 2 minutes; Contamination: 17 minutes; Racism: 2 minutes; Michio Kaku: 4 minutes; Vieques: 3 minutes; Stonewalling: 10 minutes; Proliferation: 1 minute; Populations: 17 minutes; Fightback: 7 minutes; History: 6 minutes ;Yugoslavia: 1 minute; The Children: 6 minutes; Finale: 6 minutes

Special Thanks to:

Wallace Global Fund, George Goloff and a whole host of generous grassroots donors who made this film possible.


You can make a difference! Funds are urgently needed to publicize and distribute Poison DUst. Send donations to The International Action Center: 147 West 24th Street, Fl 2, New York, New York 10011  Or donate on-line. Call 212-633-6646 for information

Partial Bibliography

The Defense Department, the Pentagon, field research and personal testimony as well as veterans’ organizations and environmental studies back up the statements made in Poison DUst. Sources and related post-production references include:

Action Guide: Depleted Uranium/Gulf War Syndrome: pdf booklet produced by SNAFU

Bult-Ito, Abel, “Nothing depleted about ‘depleted uranium'”1/22/2006

Catalinotto, John, “VA medical expert exposes Pentagon cover-up” from Workers World News Service, 1997, found on www.gulfwarvets.com

Cleaver, Hannah, Exiled islanders return to radioactive paradise”, Telegraph.co.uk 4/6/2005. Exiles from a tropical paradise poisoned by American nuclear tests are at last preparing to return to the island where they were used as human guinea pigs to monitor radiation. But the people of Rongelap will not be the only ones making a pilgrimage to their dreamy mid-Pacific atoll, one of the Marshall Islands. Among the palm trees a small hotel will welcome tourists looking for the ultimate getaway.

Croke, Lisa Ashkenaz, “NATO weapons in cancer scare”, “Tons of Depleted Uranium Polluting Iraq”, YellowTimes.org, 12/1/2003

Dowding, R.J. ; Wells, M.G. ; Crowson, A Metals & Alloys– Preparation & Fabrication ;360201 — Ceramics, Cermets, & Refractories, Research Org Army Research Lab., Watertown, MA (United States), 5/1/1993

Fahey, Dan, “DU: America’s Military ‘Gift’ that Keeps on Giving” 2/18/2001, copyright 2001, LA Times.

Flounders, Sara, “Another War Crime? Iraqi Cities ‘Hot’ with Depleted Uranium”,2003  pdf brochure version

GAONSIAD REPORT on DU health effects, page 5 on lack of training for DU awareness.
Downloadable 40 page booklet

GAVLAK, DALE (AP), “U.N. training Iraqis in Jordan to measure radiation from depleted uranium”, 6/1/2005.

Harris, Byron / WFAA-TV Studies link birth defects, Gulf War/ Pentagon says there is no proven correlation, 2/24/2004

King, Rita J., “Veterans charge illnesses tied to new form of Agent Orange/ U.S. officials accused of knowingly putting soldiers in contaminated area”, The North County News, Volume 39, Number 45, 11/9- 11/15/2005

Los Alamos National Laboratory: 3/1/1991, “The Effectiveness of Depeted Uranium Penetrators”

Nichols, Bob, ‘Depleted, it ain’t! So-called depleted uranium, that is!’, 5/31/2005, Project Censored Award Winner & Online Journal Contributing Writer http://www.onlinejournal.com/Commentary/053105Nichols/053105nichols.html

Nichols, Bob, ‘Heads Roll at the VA: Mushrooming DU Scandal Blamed’, 1/28/2005, from Global Research (includes references)

Reuters contribution on Gulfwarvets web-site 1/3/2001

Rokke, Doug, Open Letter to Pres. Bush, Prime Minister Blair & U.S. Congress – Depleted Uranium Situation Requires Action“, June 2, 2005

Rokke, Doug, “Depleted Uranium, George Bush & Tony Blair” , 10/10/2005

Shirley, John, “Nukes of the Gulf War” Copyright 1996 by ParaScope, Inc (includes bibliography).

Hearings on the plight of the Marshall Islanders: Ms. Chiyoko Tamayose’s Testimony Hearing on the Changed Circumstances Petition (CCP)
US Congress House Joint Hearings Resources Committee and Foreign Affairs Pacific Area. 5/5/2005

Williams, Dai, Research and reports on uranium based warheads: hazards for Iraq

Letter to du-list@yahoogroups.com about Granddaughter with Birth Defects , 11/23/2005


Please post public screening announcement here: email Peoples Video Network
To arrange speakers, call 212-633-6646

The screenings we know about:

The Czech version of Poison DUst was screened in a public cinema in Prague on November 12th, 2007

82year old WW2 Navy veteran speaks out against Depleted Uranium

The Milwaukee premier of “Poison DUst”: April 21, 2007

A Cafe Opens to Serve a Mission to End the War

By MICHELLE YORK – Published: November 19, 2006 : On Veterans Day, John Hartlaub wandered into the newest cafe in Watertown, N.Y. It was sparsely furnished, with three Internet stations, a black sofa and an offering of hot or cold cider. A customer who actually wanted coffee would have to buy it a few doors away. Mr. Hartlaub stayed most of the afternoon anyway. He browsed a few dozen  military books for sale, then pulled up a folding chair to watch “Poison Dust,” a documentary about the health effects of depleted uranium weapons on soldiers returning from Iraq.

Prague, Czech Republic: One World / Jeden Svet 8th International Human Rights Documentary Film Festival Videotheque: March 1-9, 2006

Havana, Cuba: 5ta. Muestra Nacional de Nuevos Realizadores: February 21-26, 2006

LA: Friday, August 12th at 7:30 pm: 5274 W Pico Blvd, Rm 203 (5 blocks west of La Brea)– IAC Film Showing – A Summer Preview of Poison DUst; 323 936-7266

NYC: Aug 7 , 2005, Poison DUst WBAI Benefit at Riverside Church – For the 60th Anniversary of Hiroshima

NYC: Tues, 5/3/05: Ramsey Clark & Japanese Delegation Reception, Exhibit

April 19, 2005: Queens Screening of the New Full-length Documentary: POISON DUST: A new look at U.S. radioactive weapons

April 21, 2005 : See the Baltimore screening of POISON DUst…a new look at U.S. radioactive weapons, 7 P.M. to 9 P.M. at the All Peoples Congress Hall, 426 E. 31st Street (near 31st & Greenmount Ave.)

During the current Iraq war the U.S. use of radioactive DU weapons increased from 375 tons used in 1991 to 2200 tons. The Pentagon has bombed, occupied, tortured and contaminated Iraq. Millions of Iraqis are affected. Over one million  soldiers have rotated into Iraq. Today, half of the 697,000 U.S. Gulf war troops from the 1991 war have reported serious medical problems and a significant increase in birth defects among their newborn children. The effects on the Iraqi  people are far greater. DU is a war crime. This is a must see documentary. Bring family, friends and neighbors. ADMISSION FREE for more information call (410) 235-7040

Media Coverage/Reviews/Articles

From Audiofile Audition

Every family member of a soldier should watch this documentary…. …this is on an important subject which is being kept generally under wraps by the government and media. It is about young soldiers who thought they came home safely from the Gulf War and Iraq War but discovered they hadn’t. Thousands of vets now suffer the symptoms of uranium poisoning. There were many stricken after the Gulf War when only 370 tones of depleted uranium were used, but so far in Iraq thousands of tons have been involved. rating: **** – John Sunier http://www.audaud.com/article.php?ArticleID=1091

From Amazon.com

WOW, DO NOT MISS THIS DOCUMENTARY! Radioactive Depleted Uranium weapons used on our own troops? – not to  mention innocent civilians? …Very timely. I saw this film at some screening in NYC. If you like films such as Fog of War, and Hearts & Minds ….A Must….rating: **** – D. Howard (OH)

From: Cynicism and the Use of Depleted Uranium, By: Jack Dalton, July 23, 2005

If you read nothing else, you have got to read “Metal of Dishonor” as well as watching the DVD, “Poison Dust.” Both articulate what DU is, what it does and how it does what it does—kill; deform babies; poison the land and water and air; the use of DU simply stated is nuclear war.


For those of you involved with anti-recruitment efforts the issue of Depleted Uranium use and contamination is as good as anything and better than a lot, in terms of educating potential enlistees about what they will be faced with if they enlist in today’s military. Nothing speaks as loudly as what we see—the DVD Poison DUst does not just speak, it  “screams.”


I read the book “Metal of Dishonor” over a year ago. Like a lot of people, I did not know that much about DU. After reading the book I went on a crash course reading everything I could access on DU. Since then I’ve had email  conversations with some of the top DU researchers in the country. It is for that reason I believe so strongly that the use of DU weapons is nuclear war, period. That is what motivated me to “advertise” the book, “Metal of Dishonor” and the DVD, “Poison Dust” – the DVD is an especially great tool for presenting good solid documented fact about DU and its  effects on people.

Get the DVD at the least and put it to work! I have no interest in this other than the desire to use everything at our  disposal to educate our fellow Americans about how are own troops are being poisoned by the very military they serve—and are then ignored by the very Veterans Administration (pdf link) that is supposed to be there to provide veterans with medical care.

From Jersey City Reporter, 5/28/2005: “The dangers of D.U. — JC resident produces video documentary on depleted uranium,its effect on soldiers returning from Iraq”

… the new documentary “Poison DUst,” … tells of three National Guard officers from New York City who, after returning from a tour of duty in Iraq in 2003, noticed that they were suffering from unusual ailments….


The documentary, directed and edited by Harris and a team of video producers and researchers from the New York City-based Peoples Video Network (PVN), is a follow up to the 1997 PVN video, Metal of Dishonor, which told the story of soldiers who fought in the Persian Gulf War in the 1990s and how they suffered from exposure to DU.


“This information is still being covered up by the military and is not getting out to the mainstream,” said Harris. “We need to inform the public further of the dangers of depleted uranium since it is being used more frequently and the soldiers in Iraq are serving much longer.”


“At certain forums, there has been anger and outrage, with people calling for this practice by the military to end,” said Harris.

From: The Queens Tribune, 4/21/2005

Queens veterans of the War in Iraq share military stories, pay tribute to their fallen comrades and talk to each other about their experiences – and one element keeps ringing true to many of the soldiers. Depleted uranium.

On Tuesday night, in the basement of All Saint’s Episcopal Church in Sunnyside, there was a screening of Poison DUst, a documentary that chronicles the United States government’s use of depleted Uranium. …

The movie makes a convincing case for its argument that depleted uranium is being used rampantly in Iraq, among other places, and that wherever it is used it causes terrible health problems. The audience was clearly disturbed by the film.

“Isn’t there some crime being committed?” Bill Hagel, who attended, asked in the question and answer session that followed. “Shouldn’t someone be in jail?”

From Queens Chronicle, 4/14/2005: Sunnyside Hosts Documentary On Depleted Uranium Exposure

“We’ve known about the cancer-producing and death-producing qualities of depleted uranium since the 1890s,” Harris said. She accuses the United States government of hiding the facts related to the harmfulness of this substance because the weapons it produces are so effective. “It’s just not cost-effective to be open about

Is depleted uranium the Agent Orange of this generation of soldiers? “Poison Dust” seems to think so. Uranium is an extremely heavy metal, making it ideal for munitions casings as it can pierce very heavy armor. It is also radioactive. When a uranium shell punches through another metal, like a tank, the casing vaporizes into dust. It is this dust that critics say is harming soldiers, their families and exposed civilians. Soldiers interviewed in the film report being covered in dust from morning until night, even shaking it out of their beds in the morning.

They complain of symptoms from headaches to swelling to chronic fatigue. One Bronx soldier’s daughter, conceived shortly after his return, has a severely deformed hand from a birth defect. He was convinced of the involvement of depleted uranium when he saw photographs of similar deformities in Iraqi

Film Poison DUst features vets exposed to DU

The premiere showing on Feb. 15 [2006] of “Poison DUst”–a documentary highlighting the effects of Depleted Uranium [DU] on veterans returning from the Iraq war– attracted a large and engaged crowd at the New School theater. Filmmaker Sue Harris was on hand to introduce the film and take questions afterward. Former U.S. Attorney General Ramsey Clark and Sara Flounders, national co-director of the International Action Center, also spoke at the event.  Complete article


You can make a difference! Funds are urgently needed to publicize and distribute Poison DUst. Send donations to The International Action Center: 147 West 24th Street, Fl 2, New York, New York 10011  Or donate on-line. Call 212-633-6646 for information

International Action Center
Solidarity Center
147 W. 24th St. 2nd Fl.
New York, NY 10011

E-mail: iacenter@iacenter.org
En Español: iac-cai@iacenter.org
Phone 212.633.6646