March 25, 2008 appeal for phone calls on DU action (BIP)
Your help is needed! Turn up the heat on the Mayor 961-9211, the Hawaii County Council members 961-8225, State legislators 974-4000, Governor Lingle, 1-808-586-0034, Hawaii's Congressional delegates Akaka 935-1114, Inouye 935-0844, Hirono 935-3756 and all candidates to respond to the issue. (See below)
Malu `Aina Center for Non-violent Education & Action
P.O. Box AB Ola`a (Kurtistown), Hawaii 96760
Phone 808-966-7622 email firstname.lastname@example.org www.malu-aina.org
Dear Mayor Kim and All Hawaii public officials: March 25, 2008
Re citizen call: All live-fire and aerial bombings of the entire Pohakuloa range should be
immediately stopped until a thorough, objective and independent survey has been funded
(via the military budget) and completed, in order to assure real public safety.
Thank you Mayor Kim for responding March 17th to our March 3rd open letter appeal to you and other government officials. You speak of having "established through all these years a relationship that is based on trust and respect of the other's position." Mayor Kim, that trust has been breaking down. In regards to calling for a halt to all live-fire and bombing at Pohakuloa you state that you "will not do that." Instead you choose to turn again to the military and the Dept. of Health (DOH), for further education and updates on the issue. Mayor Kim, on the Pohakuloa issue, these agencies have not served the people well and have placed us all at risk of contamination. Doctors and scientists (Medical Dr. Lorrin Pang, Major Doug Rokke, PhD who was in charge of the first Gulf War DU clean up, and others) are warning us of the dangers of D.U. radiation. The general threat of DU is not the question. The question is --is the DU at PTA a threat?
The radiation testing done by the DOH and the Army at PTA is incomplete. The full extent of the radiation contamination is not yet known. The Army/DOH are not answering Malu Aina and Sierra Club repeated requests for information. The Army's lead person, Col Howard Killian, from all appearances, is stonewalling the public, and may even be covering up information on further radiation contamination in Hawaii.
Mayor Kim, the Army has lied to Big Island residents and officials in the past. They said they wanted to do "weather testing" in the Waiakea Forest Reserve, Hilo's Watershed, when in fact they conducted secret, deadly, nerve gas testing there. Neither does the Dept of Health have a good track record in standing up for public health against the military, which is one of, if not in fact the largest polluter in Hawaii.
Mayor Kim, trust and respect are good things, but you are our paid top county public official. We want to know and see the basis of your unwillingness to stop the spread of military radiation contamination on Hawaii Island. Mr. Mayor -- show us the data, the documents, the communication, upon which you are basing your stance.
We would like copies of all communication between you and DOH Russell Takata, Dr. Fukino, and other DOH officials over the issue of radiation contamination at PTA. We would also like copies of all communication between you and military personnel over the same issue.
Russell Takata of the DOH, in response to numerous community requests, promised in the fall of 2007 to hold open, balanced, public forums in east Hawaii on the military radiation contamination issue by December 2007. To date no such forums have been held.
Mayor Kim, we have been appealing to you and other government officials, as well as the Army and the DOH since Aug. 20, 2007, when the Army confirmed radiation contamination at PTA. We have called for 5 basic points: 1. Halt all live-fire; 2 Citizen monitors involved in the process of further assessment; 3 Continuous monitoring around impact areas; 4. Testing of military and civilians for exposure; 5. Ongoing public balanced informational and Q & A meetings. Not one of these appeals have been met with a positive response. The military keeps bombing and shelling away on a base known to be contaminated with radiation and our elected officials remain silent and fail to take even basic actions noted above. The trust and respect needs fixing, Mr. Mayor. Actions will speak a lot better than words to repair the damage.
Mr. Mayor, you could have spoken out long ago calling for citizen representatives (including Dr. Lorrin Pang) to be involved in the ongoing assessment of the potential DU problem with the Army/DOH to assure transparency and the confidence of the community. You could have also called for (even moderated) public balanced informational and Q & A meetings with the Army/DOH, Dr. Pang, etc. It's late, but never too late, for such actions. But more is needed. Isn't it about time that government ( including the Army/DOH, and yourself) begins to operate on the precautionary principle?
We would like to meet with you to discuss these matters further, but we want more action now than you offered in your March 17th letter as a good faith expression of mutual trust and respect.
Mahalo and Aloha.
for Malu `Aina Ohana
cc: for public release