Downtown Manhattan was an open-air toxic waste site for weeks after the 9/11 terror attacks, though the Bushite EPA, on orders from the White House
, said everything was OK, nothing to worry about.
Today, the New York Times reported on the death of a NYC police detective, which was the first to be officially linked to exposure to the toxic air after 9/11.
Here's the lede:
For the first time, the death of an emergency responder has been formally linked to the hours he logged picking through dust-filled wreckage of the World Trade Center site four-and-a-half years ago, the authorities said.
James Zadroga, a New York Police Department detective who was one of thousands of police officers, firefighters and other emergency workers who spent weeks working amid the noxious fumes and smoke -- protected only by a thin paper mask -- died on Jan. 5 of pulmonary disease and respiratory failure, a series of debilitating sicknesses that took hold in his lungs in late 2001.
More deadly details below.
Zadroga's death, at the age of 34 (oddly not mentioned in the NYT story online), was "directly related to the 9/11 incident," according to a pathologist in the medical examiner's office of Ocean County, N.J., where Zadroga lived and died.
Also not in the NYT story (but easily found on Google) is the fact that Zadroga spent an estimated 450 hours at Ground Zero, working up to 16 hours a day, without a respirator.
It gets worse, if possible. Zadroga leaves a 4-year-old daughter, who is now an orphan, because his wife/her mother died of cancer in 2004.
In the NYT story, Zadroga's father tries to let the Bushites off the hook:
They came forward on that day and they gave hours and hours of their labor at the World Trade Center site, knowing that they were in danger every minute. Knowing -- they all knew -- that it was detrimental to their health. I mean you had to be a fool not to realize that.
The cops and firefighters who worked at Ground Zero may have known the Bushites were lying and may not be willing to assign the blame for their illnesses and deaths to the "Don't worry, be happy" EPA.
I am less forgiving. The Bushite EPA, and its masters in the White House, have the blood of heroic 9/11 responders on their hands. And it will NEVER wash off.
Sunday, I diaried a front-page New York Post story about a "killer shirt" from a Ground Zero worker (kept since then in a sealed plastic bag and tested by a reputable lab) that was extremely and abnormally contaminated with asbestos, zinc, mercury, antimony, barium, chromium, cobalt, copper, lead and molybdenum.
The shirt does not lie; the toxic air around Ground Zero will probably kill more people than the terrorists did.
Though most of them, unlike James Zadroga, will not rate even a Metro section story.
It won't be news anymore.