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China’s secret weapon exposed: ‘Radioactive tomb’ primed as World War 3 trump card

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The Marshall Islands are a little-known atoll, situated in the north-east region of the Pacific Ocean. Viewed from a map, it is easy to see the strategic advantage they offer for any number of nations, not least China and the US. In recent years, China has taken an increasing interest in the Marshall Islands and other Pacific Island nations; its relatively close proximity to and opportunity at reducing the US’ influence in the region offers a jumping base for China’s campaign of expansionism.

Extending its influence, China has provided many of the Pacific Islands aid and loans – surpassing the US as the region’s largest trade partner, according to the LA Times. 

This has stirred into action US interest in the region, alarming leaders to pay more attention to the islands, their people and welfare.

Yet, the Marshall Islanders hold no loyalties to the US – the latter having soured relations with natives over 50 years ago. 

So too has news of North Korea’s increased hostilities towards South Korea sparked fears of nuclear destruction, as the dictatorship regularly fires missiles into the Japanese Sea and is known to have weapons capable of reaching the Pacific Islands

World War 3: China’s secret weapon exposed as ‘radioactive tomb’ primed

World War 3: China’s secret weapon exposed as ‘radioactive tomb’ primed (Image: GETTY)

Marshall Islands: The dome pictured from above

Marshall Islands: The dome pictured from above (Image: GETTY)

The US has a short but lasting history with the Marshall Islands meaning Washington is viewed with suspicion. 

Sat on Runit Island – part of the Marshall Islands – is a giant dome, a disc shaped concrete structure, metres long and wide.

Its existence is testament to the US’ previous military endeavours in the region and its very existence could prove to be China’s secret weapon, as Beijing battles for favour with islanders.

JUST IN: WW3: How US ‘used Marshall Islanders as radioactive guinea pigs’

US navy: One of the bombed out ships shipwrecked near to the islands

US navy: One of the bombed out ships shipwrecked near to the islands (Image: GETTY)

In the Forties, the islands became the stage for the US to practice nuclear warfare for what was then considered imminent conflict with the Soviet Union.

Shortly after they were captured in 1944, the military and navy began twelve years of relentless nuclear testing on Bikini Atoll.

As veteran journalist, John Pilger, explained during his 2016 documentary, “The Coming War on China”, the islands and their inhabitants became the US’ “guinea pigs”.

Between 1946 and 1958, 67 nuclear bombs were detonated on, in and above the Marshall Islands.

It vaporised entire islands, carving giants craters into its shallow lagoons.

Hundreds of people were forced to leave their homes, having to find refuge on other nearby islands.

The islands have subsequently been marred and infected with radioactive waste.

In the late Seventies, loose waste and topsoil debris carrying high amounts of radioactive matter was scraped from six different islands.

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Bikini Atoll: The island was hit with 67 nuclear bombs over a period of twelve years

Bikini Atoll: The island was hit with 67 nuclear bombs over a period of twelve years (Image: GETTY)

Native islanders: The islanders were forced to move from their homes because of the bombs

Native islanders: The islanders were forced to move from their homes because of the bombs (Image: GETTY)

This waste was then transported to Runit Island, and mixed with concrete to create what is known today as the Runit Dome, known locally as The Tomb.

It holds more than 3.1 million cubic feet – or 35 Olympic-sized swimming pools – of US-produced radioactive soil and debris.

The Dome has since been a point of controversy, with many fearing a strong typhoon might compromise the structure, releasing deadly waste into the ocean.

More recently, US President Donald Trump in December approved a huge defence bill, part of which planned to look into the state of the ageing dome.

An investigation was called after concerns that rising sea levels caused by climate change could potentially compromise the waste inside.

Tasked with the report, energy secretary, Dan Brouillette.

He is required to report back to the House and Senate Armed Services Committees with “a detailed plan to repair the dome to ensure that it does not have any harmful effects to the local population, environment or wildlife”.

The report must also assess the condition of the outside of the structure and what effect the environment and rising sea levels might have.

US latest: John Pilger said the US used the islands and the islanders as'guinea pigs'

US latest: John Pilger said the US used the islands and the islanders as ‘guinea pigs’ (Image: GETTY)

The dome’s condition was further highlighted in a November 2019 investigation by the LA Times, which reported that it “bobs up and down with the tide”.

Congress’ plans to wind-up the investigation into the dome’s condition within six months has been seriously marred by the coronavirus pandemic, likely having scaled back working times considerably.

To many who live on the islands, the dome is a visible manifestation of the US’ nuclear legacy.

Some of those Mr Pilger interviewed during his documentary were children when the bombs started being dropped.

Nerje Joseph said: “Early in the morning when the bomb fell, we were sleeping when we heard this loud noise.

“We ran out to see what it was. We did know what it was. It was dawn.

“The whole sky lit up with every colour like a massive rainbow: blue, red, green, yellow.”

Radioactive: Many of the islanders died from radiation poisoning

Radioactive: Many of the islanders died from radiation poisoning (Image: GETTY)

Another, named Betty Edmond, explained: “We were all screaming.

“I tried to hide behind my parents.”

Finally, Lemoyo Abon recalled: “We were terrified.

“We thought it must be another war or the end of the world.”



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