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“There is no use surviving a nuclear war because nuclear radiation lasts one thousand years, which means that all survivors would spend the rest of their lives in shelters.” Statement made by a lecturer at a public educational meeting.

NUCLEAR WAR FACT: “Earth is safe after 28 days, even close to Ground Zero”

Actually, some radioactive constituents such as plutonium will last approximately twenty-six thousand years. The point that needs emphasizing is that plutonium is not deadly for all these years. We currently live with plutonium due to aboveground nuclear weapons testing. While it is true that radiation will be around for years, it is also true that after twenty-eight days shelterists can come out of their shelters permanently even if they are close to ground zero. It should also be noted that 94 percent of the radioactivity occurs within the first week; 99 percent within the first twenty-eight days. (See appendix A.)A properly designed shelter will admit no more than twenty-five rems into the shelter for a five-hundred-KT surface burst detonated at optimum altitude. This would theoretically increase the potential risk of contracting cancer from the current rate of 352 per one hundred thousand to 358 per one hundred thousand. Even this cancer rate is based on the long-term cancer rates of the victims of Hiroshima who were suffering from malnutrition prior to the bombing and then were exposed to blast, heat, and ingestion of radioactive particles by inhalation and food contamination and beta burns from fallout in direct contact with skin. All these effects are believed to compound or amplify each other; thus, the cancer rates in appendix A are considered to be excessively high.

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