How US Betrayed Marshall Islands, Kindling The Next Nuclear Disaster

"MAJURO, MARSHALL ISLANDS -- Five thousand miles west of Los Angeles and 500 miles north of the equator, on a far-flung spit of white coral sand in the central Pacific, a massive, aging and weathered concrete dome bobs up and down with the tide.

Here in the Marshall Islands, Runit Dome holds more than 3.1 million cubic feet — or 35 Olympic-sized swimming pools — of U.S.-produced radioactive soil and debris, including lethal amounts of plutonium. Nowhere else has the United States saddled another country with so much of its nuclear waste, a product of its Cold War atomic testing program.

Between 1946 and 1958, the United States detonated 67 nuclear bombs on, in and above the Marshall Islands — vaporizing whole islands, carving craters into its shallow lagoons and exiling hundreds of people from their homes."

Susanne Rust reports for the Los Angeles Times with photography and videography by Carolyn Cole, and graphics and design by Lorena Iñiguez Elebee and Sean Greene, November 10, 2019.


"15 Months, 5 Trips, A Gut-Wrenching Sight: How We Reported The Marshall Islands Story" (Los Angeles Times)

Source: LA Times, 11/11/2019