Photographer Gerd Ludwig exploits suffering children

Dear mr Ludwig,


You make really beautiful pictures, but alas you have a problem with storytelling. Decades of research have shown that the radiation that was released from the Chernobyl nuclear power plant has never been high enough to cause congenital malformations. This is established by the World Health Organisation, by the relevant departments of the UN and several other international organisations. The fear for these malformations caused thousands of pregnant women to have their foetuses aborted and there is a general scientific consensus that there was no need for these abortions.


For scientists this was not really news, since research after the health effects of the atomic bombs in Hiroshima and Nagasaki – where radiation levels were even higher – has shown similar results. Radiation levels in the Chernobyl area were simply not high enough to cause these malformations.


From this page: I copy:

Reproductive and hereditary effects and children's health

Given the low radiation doses received by most people exposed to the Chernobyl accident, no effects on fertility, numbers of stillbirths, adverse pregnancy outcomes or delivery complications have been demonstrated nor are there expected to be any. A modest but steady increase in reported congenital malformations in both contaminated and uncontaminated areas of Belarus appears related to improved reporting and not to radiation exposure.


But I conclude from the vague terms you use:

‘Meanwhile, doctors in the huge fall-out regions still report elevated cancer rates, and the staff in the Center for Radiation Medicine in Kiev contributes many of their patients’ conditions to the radioactivity released by the accident.


that you are well aware of the fact that the malformations you show cannot be reliably blamed on the 1986 disaster  and that you are in fact exploiting radiophobia and use suffering children as your tools.


I know many people will believe you. Radiophobia is widespread. The fear of radiation caused both the evacuations in Chernobyl and in Fukushima. In both cases these evacuations have caused so much suffering and deaths that many scientists have said that the health of the people involved would have been better served by no evacuation at all. For the Fukushima evacuation, the death toll stand at 6000. There are no casualties of radiation there and none are ever expected.


With regard to the radiation levels in Chernobyl. The Chernobyl Forum (see here )  describes how radiation levels in Brazil, India and China are sometimes higher that in the forbidden zone in Chernobyl. I am currently making a video about my trip to one of these places, Guarapari in Brazil. Here the people on the beach enjoy radiation levels that are higher then in Chernobyl. The video is not ready yet, but you can see the Guarapari part here: .


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