Cerium, Ruthenium and Caesium @ Aberdeenshire


As one of the Chernobyl generation I am always on the look out for signs of nuclear illness. The radioactive cloud from the disaster sped slowly over all of Europe spreading an invisible ash over the entire continent. As with Windscale before it, Chernobyl was officially downplayed. The very public pouring of milk down Northumbrian drains following the Windscale nuclear disaster kind of gave the game away and Windscale was quickly renamed Sellafield as a cover-up for those guilty parties. Shameful indeed. Officially the only folk to suffer were the oysters of the Irish Sea who were found to contain a mixture of radioactive Cerium, Ruthenium and Caesium. In the case of Chernobyl, although the region around the stricken town was evacuated and the place remains contaminated till this very day, us Scots were told not to worry but simply advised not to eat sheep sourced from those high pastures around the English borders. Seemingly the politicians, the scientists and the engineers of the day got it wrong and, of course, the effects continue. I mean, do you think I am eating Lockerbie bred sheep for dinner tonight? I don’t think so. In fact, I spit on any such suggestion.
So what brought this up?
Well, I have been in the habit of blogging on a fairly regular basis. Topics such as horse-logging in the Aberdeenshire countryside, Amazon and the struggling author and even Empire Windrush sometimes take my fancy. And why not. We have after all a measure of freedom of speech, don’t we? And a good rant does nobody any harm.
So, imagine my surprise when a moderator from a well-known FB group which purports to champion the history and imagery of Aberdeenshire strongly advised that posts including links to content elsewhere would not be encouraged. No hyperlinks allowed and no foreign content. It was a gentle shot across the bow but, in the big scheme of things, represents – to me at least – a blatant disregard for freedom of speech. Said FB group will remain nameless for now and I hope and pray that said moderator will rethink his strange stance. But in the big scheme of things, there is no room for censorship in this digital age. I mean, what is there about Aberdeenshire or indeed the North-east worth hiding? Surely sharing is caring.
I have of course posted a link to this blog, along with a pack of sheep on the offending FB page. So, what will happen will no doubt happen. Unless of course, there is a cover up. In which case I give up.

Duncan Harley is the author of The A-Z of Curious Aberdeenshire

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