1. POST-WAR

    Iraq Sees Surge in Birth Defects

    FALLUJA, IRAQ - NOVEMBER 12:  (R to L) Yousif Hamed, age 4 years old, his brother Anas Hamed and his sister Inas who suffer from birth defects are pictured on November 12, 2009 in the city of Falluja west of Baghdad, Iraq. Birth defects have soared in Fallujah, which was the site of two major battles between the U.S military and insurgents after the invasion of Iraq according to Iraqi doctors. (Photo by Muhannad Fala'ah / Getty Images)

    Muhannad Fala'ah / Getty Images

    A “staggering rise” in birth defects among Iraqi children conceived in the aftermath of the war has been linked to military assaults, according to a new study. Reports of increased miscarriages, lead and mercury poisoning, congenital heart problems, brain defects, and malformed limbs appear to be worse in children born in Fallujah, where the U.S. launched two devastating military assaults eight years ago. American forces admitted to using white phosphorous shells during the bombardment, though they denied using depleted uranium, which has been linked to high rates of cancer and birth defects. Similar defects have been found among children born in Basra after British troops invaded.

    Read it at The Independent