NH #604: John Wayne: Downwinder? New Documentary DOWNWIND on U.S. Nuke Radiation Poisoning of St. George, Utah – Director Mark Shapiro

John Wayne starred as Genghis Khan (racially inappropriate casting, anyone?) in “The Conquerer.”
The flm was shot near St. George, Utah, not long after Nevada Test Site “Dirty” Harry explosion contaminated the area with radioactive fallout. More than half the film’s cast and crew died of cancer, including The Duke.

John Wayne: Downwinder? New Documentary DOWNWIND on U.S. Nuke Radiation Poisoning of St. George, Utah – Director Mark Shapiro

MILLER MAP: Downwind areas hit by radioactive fallout from Nevada Test Site A-bomb detonations, 1951-1992
  • Radioactive fallout from the Nevada Test Site contaminated land, water, people… and John Wayne? It’s probable. Learn the stories of St. George, Utah citizens hit by radiation wafting downwind from “Dirty” Harry bomb fallout in DOWNWIND – a new documentary premiering at Slamdance. John Wayne, Susan Hayward and a full film company shot THE CONQUERER nearby; more than half the cast and crew died of cancer in the ensuing years. That film and the stories around it led to co-directors Mark Shapiro and Douglas Brian Miller researching the issues – and shooting the film DOWNWIND.
    I spoke with Director Mark Shapiro on Friday, January 13, 2023.
  • DOWNWIND will premiere at the Slamdance Film Festival in Park City, Utah on January 23, 2023. It will be followed by a panel discussion including:
    Ian Zabarte, Principal Man of the Western Tribes of the Shoshone Nation of Indians
    Downwinder Activists Playwright/Journalist Mary Dickson and Claudia Peterson
    Scott Williams, Nuclear Policy Consultant, HEAL Utah
    Co-Directors Mark Shapiro and Douglas Brian Miller

Nuclear Hotseat Hot Story with Linda Pentz Gunter

Bad bad bad bad vibrations! Vogtle 3 in Georgia, one of only 2 new reactors under construction in the US, has been delayed yet again, this time for a vibrating pipe that will add $30 million more to the already exorbitant $30 billion costs.

Numnutz of the Week (for Outstanding Nuclear Boneheadedness):

  • A granular look a how a newspaper’s rah-rah support for Japan’s dumping of radioactive water from Fukushima into the Pacific gets woven into word choices, “accepted” wisdom, and yet another act of bullying against a concerned population – heck, a concerned WORLD.


  • The Doomsday Clock Playlist – songs that mention or demonstrate direct inspiration from the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists’ Doomsday Clock – all available on the Bulletin’s Spotify account:
    • Wasteland, Baby! – Hozier
    • Easy/Lucky/Free – Bright Eyes
    • 2 Minutes to Midnight – 2015 Remaster – Iron Maiden
    • Why Did I Fall For That – The Who
    • The Call Up – Remastered – The Clash
    • Quarter Past Midnight – Bastille
    • Two Suns in the Sunset Pink Floyd
    • Seven Minutes To Midnight – Wah! Heat
    • Minutes To Midnight – Midnight Oil
    • The Circle In The Square – Flobots
    • EFFED – ESnowy, Jason Williamson
    • Russians – Sting
    • Doomsday Clock – Suicide Squirrel