Iraq: A Depleted Generation
Photographs and text by J.B. Russell
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with the foreign press office at the Ministry of Information. I would be assigned a "guide" who would "help" me and be with me at all times while I was working. For this privilege I would pay $50 for every day I was in Iraq. My opinionated passenger realized his monologue was coming to an end as we approached the city. He wished me luck with my work and a pleasant stay in Iraq. With a wry smile he said, "In Iraq we say that there are four fingers between reality and falsehood." Placing his hand on the side of his head, his four fingers lying on his temple between his ear and his eye, he continued, "the distance between what one hears from others and what one sees for himself."

The first days in Baghdad were filled with information gathering from UN officials, Iraqi authorities and doctors who specialized in treating and researching the effects of depleted uranium on their patients.
There is the well known enigma of Gulf War Syndrome among American soldiers that served in the liberation of Kuwait. And now similar cases were beginning to appear in European soldiers that had served in Bosnia and Kosovo where DU warheads were also employed; the Balkan Syndrome. However, the
United States government as well as European Union officials continue to claim that exhaustive testing has been conducted and that

there is virtually no health risks associated with depleted uranium.

As the desert gave way to date palm groves and cultivated fields which in turn transformed into the urban sprawl of Baghdad, I was wondering how freely I would be able to work and how objective I would be able to be. Upon arrival in Baghdad I would have to check in

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