”Indeed, this autumn, Mayak (of which not a single historic photo exists to this day) celebrated a gruesome anniversary. In the fall of 1957, a tank filled with 80 tons of nuclear waste exploded. According to an eyewitness, a ”strange, bright red fog” rose several thousand meters into the air. ”In the winter,” says the eyewitness, ”I would have terrible headaches and nosebleeds, and I almost went blind.”
”The consequences of the 1957 nuclear accident in Siberia were ”far more serious” than Chernobyl, the German television network ARD recently reported. ”Most of the pupils in my class died of cancer,” says Gulchara Ismagilova, who was 11 at the time.”
”There is no doubt that the workers at this plant east of the Ural Mountains performed dangerous work. Enveloped in a permanent atmosphere of fear — with intelligence agents in black coats constantly hurrying through the hallways — about 150 men would lift the warm, spent fuel elements from the reactors and carry them to the radiochemical plant.”
”And yet the amount of health damage sustained by these workers was astonishingly low. The GSF study has examined 6,293 men who worked at the chemical plant between 1948 and 1972. ”So far 301 have died of lung cancer,” says Jacob. ”But only 100 cases were caused by radiation. The others were attributed to cigarettes.””
”Fifteen years after the reactor accident, the German newsmagazine Focus concluded that Chernobyl was responsible for ”500,000” deaths.”
”But the six-figure death counts that opponents of nuclear power once cited are simply nonsense. In most cases, they were derived from vague ”extrapolations” based on the hearsay reported by Russian dissidents. But such horror stories have remained part of the nuclear narrative to this day.”
”Today, 60 years later, the study’s results are clear. More than 700 people eventually died as a result of radiation received from the atomic attack:
- 87 died of leukemia;
- 440 died of tumors;
- and 250 died of radiation-induced heart attacks.
- In addition, 30 fetuses developed mental disabilities after they were born.
Such statistics have attracted little notice so far. The numbers cited in schoolbooks are much higher. According to Wikipedia, the online encyclopedia, 105,000 people died of the ”long-term consequences of radiation.”