- Sputnik International, 1920
Sputnik brings you all the latest breaking stories, expert analysis and videos from North and South America.

US Veterans Sickened by Radiation at Area 52 Denied Health Benefits

© AP Photo / Juan Carlos LlorcaLt. Col. Jason Crowe walks toward a radiation contaminated bunker at Ft. Bliss, Texas, Friday, June 19, 2013
Lt. Col. Jason Crowe walks toward a radiation contaminated bunker at Ft. Bliss, Texas, Friday, June 19, 2013 - Sputnik International, 1920, 28.05.2024
Cases of cancer, bronchitis and other breathing issues have been documented in veterans who served at a classified military compound that inspected secretly-obtained Soviet fighter jets.
Hundreds of veterans of the US Armed Forces have been sickened after being stationed at a top secret base in the Nevada desert, but the confidential nature of their work there has prevented them from receiving benefits for their health conditions.
US media documented the story of one such former servicemember, who worked at an installation sometimes called Area 52.
“It scarred my lungs,” said Mark Ely, a 63-year-old retired Air Force technician. “I got cysts on my liver… I started having lipomas, tumors inside my body I had to remove. My lining in my bladder was shed.”
For years the United States conducted extensive nuclear testing near the secret base.
In this Nov. 7, 2018, photo released by the U.S. Army, U.S. soldiers gather for a brief during a combined joint patrol rehearsal in Manbij, Syria - Sputnik International, 1920, 06.11.2023
Growing Evidence Shows How Artillery Fire in Syria, Iraq Left US Troops With Brain Damage
A 1975 federal report acknowledged that toxic radioactive dust scattered throughout the area posed a risk to people stationed nearby, but government analysts concluded nuclear testing should continue.
“Discontinuing the work done at the Range would be against the national interest,” concluded the assessment. “The Range could in principle be decommissioned, but the cost would be great… Shutting the Range down or moving its operations elsewhere would also have an adverse impact on the economy of the Tonopah area.”
“The environmental costs inherent in the work are small and reasonable for the benefits received.”
Some $25.7 billion in health benefits have been allocated to employees of the US Department of Energy and other federal agencies who were stationed in the area. But the work of Ely and other military veterans is excluded from service records, meaning they cannot prove they were present at Area 52.
“It makes me incredibly mad and it hurts me too because they're supposed to have my back,” said Ely. “I had theirs and I want them to have mine.”
US army soldiers, part of the Combined Joint Task Force – Operation Inherent Resolve (CJTF-OIR) the US-led coalition against the Islamic State (IS) group, walk around at the K1 Air Base northwest of Kirkuk in northern Iraq before a planned US pullout on March 29, 2020 - Sputnik International, 1920, 28.02.2024
World War III Watch: US Army Restructuring to Focus on ‘Large-Scale Combat’
To participate in the discussion
log in or register
Заголовок открываемого материала