November 16, 2008

Navajos speak on radiation sickness

‘Poison Wind’ presents oral history of uranium victimsIt has been nearly two years to the day that Jenny Pond first came up for the idea of “Poison Wind,” an oral history on the effects uranium mining has had on indigenous people of the Southwest.

Co-produced by Pond and Navajo filmmaker Norman Patrick Brown, the documentary was screened last Saturday as the official selection of the 33rd Annual American Indian Film Institute Film Festival in San Francisco. It has aired in New Mexico, Texas and Colorado and twice in German, including Oct. 26 at the Nuclear-Free Future Award ceremony in Munich along with the acclaimed documentary, “The Return of Navajo Boy,” by Jeff Spitz of Chicago.
And:Brown, who also appears in “Poison Wind,” says he believes the film “gives an intimate look into the hardships of the people who mined underground, the cancers that they’ve contracted, the radiation exposure and how it has impacted their lives. Probably one of the strongest points of the film is having the people talk about what uranium mining has done to them and their families.”

Another important thing about “Poison Wind,” he said, “was letting industry know that regardless of their attempts to stop the Diné Natural Resources Protection Act of 2005, it’s only going to make our resistance even stronger.
Comment:  For more on the subject, see Native Documentary and News.

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