One of the most widely publicised cases of electrosensitivity is that of former Norwegian Prime Minister and now World Health Organisation Director-General Gro Harlem Brundtland, who is also a medical doctor by profession. Brundtland says she is electrically sensitive to cell phones and computers and does not own a mobile phone but says that there is not yet enough scientific evidence to prove the devices are dangerous.
An interview in March 2002 with the Norwegian newspaper Dagbladet has put the WHO Director-General on the top of the list of persons known to be sensitive to HF EMF - low-intensity but high-frequency electromagnetic fields - as reports accumulate that researchers who question the health aspects of the rapidly escalating multi-billion-dollar industries in mobile phones, computers and related technological marvels are being gagged, muzzled and being pressured out of their jobs.
In Spain - reported the Cellular Phone Taskforce's information-crammed No Place to Hide newsletter for June - a judge ordered 49 cell phone antennas removed from a rooftop in downtown Valladolid, the second time a Spanish court has ruled antennas should be removed for health reasons.
"This time the fight was led by parents of children at Garcia Quintana Primary School, where three children had contacted acute lymphoblastic leukaemia and one Hodgkin's lymphoma since the antennas were installed," reported the newspaper.
2 Cell phones
In France, Dr Robert Santini, a veteran researcher in "bioelectromagnetics" said he had been forbidden by the director of the government laboratory with which he has long been associated from speaking to journalists, politicians and other researchers about "cellular phone and base station bioeffects."
On March 6 and at the request of two senators, he told the Parliamentary Office for the Evaluation of Science and Technology Choices: "We are witnessing today the development of pressure aimed at discrediting, within their institutions, certain researchers and their findings. These campaigns or moral and professional harassment are orchestrated, in particular, by certain cell phone providers, public health bodies and elected officials.
In Sweden, a group of victims of electromagnetic sensitivity asked the Prime Minister and the prestigious Karolinska Institute not to proceed with threats to close down Karolinska's Unit for Experimental Dermatology, whose Prof. Olle Johansson has produced some of the most riveting scientific questioning of the safety of cell phones and related devices.
The Association for the Electrically Sensitive in Orebro County, Sweden, last October 3 said on hearing of a cut off in funds for Prof. Johansson: "We see the lack of research funding and space as an affront not only to a scientist in whom we have great confidence but also to us and the handicapped organisation to which we belong."
In Germany, veteran medical physicist and researcher Dr Lebrecht von Klitzing of the Medical University of Lubeck was forbidden by the University Dean to address the German Bundestag (parliament) on the medical effects of cell phones, claiming such a presentation would damage the university's reputation!
3 In 1999 in Milford Haven a little girl, Nicola aged 5, had her problems magnified after the erection of a mobile phone mast on the local fire station, 60 metres from her home. She was born with epilepsy. By the time she was 2 the medical profession had reduced her fitting substantially. At the age of 5 it was down to about 2 times a week. After the mast became operation it increased to nearly 300 a month. When she was taken away from home the fitting soon subsided. This is but one example of many similar occurrences.
In Bavaria in 1998 a mobile phone mast was erected on farmland where a milking herd of cows was kept. Almost immediately the milk yield dropped by 30% and some cows showed extraordinary behaviour and sheltered behind a barn from the emissions from the mast. When investigated by an eminent team from the Universities of Hanover and Munich it was discovered on moving the whole herd away from the mast to fields 10 kilometres away the milk yield returned to normal and the cows showing the extraordinary behaviour also behaved like the other cows. When returned to the original fields and mast the behaviour returned. After being written up in the German Veterinary Journal the research team were notified of 38 similar experiences on different German farms. These experiences seem to contradict the often stated Government authorities view that anecdotal symptoms stories are often generated by articles in the press and on radio and television. Generally cows don't watch TV or read newspapers. Loscher & Kas 1998.
4 Accordingly it is reasonable to expect "some people" are more susceptible to any number of health conditions or effects, but generally it is only some people. Sir William Stewart in his Mobile Phone Report on Health stated in paragraph 1.19:-
"1.19 There are additional factors that need to be taken into account in assessing any possible health effects. Populations as a whole are not genetically homogeneous and people can vary in their susceptibility to environmental hazards. There are well-established examples in the literature of the genetic predisposition of some groups, which could influence sensitivity to disease. There could also be a dependence on age. We conclude therefore that it is not possible at present to say that exposure to RF radiation, even at levels below national guidelines, is totally without potential adverse health effects, and that the gaps in knowledge are sufficient to justify a precautionary approach (Chapter 5, paragraphs 6.35 - 6.42)."
5 Please also refer to the German "Freiburger Appeal" now signed by over 2000 General Practitioners having patients presently with symptoms after masts are erected close to the patients' homes.
Alan Meyer -Legal Director - Mast Action UK