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Helke Ferrie


How Industry Suppresses – and Government Denies – the Overwhelming Evidence of Harm

by Helke Ferrie RSS

Few people know that wireless devices are considered

Few people know that wireless devices are considered "safe" on the basis of fraudulent research

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(Ed note: This is the first of a 2-part series on Electropollution. The second part, to run in April Vitality, will focus on solutions.)

If something is invented by and for the military, it is certain to be effective and lethal. And industrial capitalists invariably view such military gizmos as having great profit potential – particularly if they’re re-packaged and promoted as beneficial to the public. Hence, the science behind atom bombs dropped on Japan in World War II led soon after to cancer radiation therapy and mammography – two of the most lucrative practices in modern medicine. Similarly, biological warfare weapons such as DDT and chemotherapy proved to be enormously lucrative in their peace-time applications – their deadly properties being undiminished despite re-packaging. Originally, the military objected to the declassification of both, but industry interests prevailed.

Today, it’s World War II radar technology that has been harnessed to create a near universal addiction and worldwide dependence on telecommunications. Anything that facilitates and enhances the human ability to communicate plugs into a powerful primal urge.

We can say no to radiation and chemotherapy, and we can do perfectly well without pesticides – but we cannot do without telephones, the internet, or electricity.  Millions of people use cell phones as if they were an indispensable body part; thousands of households use microwave ovens daily, unaware that they are ruining the nutrients in their food; well-meaning parents irradiate their infants with baby monitors; and most of us are zapped continuously by smart meters. All things wireless have taken the world by storm, supposedly serving progress.

Very few people know that all these gadgets are allowed to proliferate on the basis of outright fraudulent research. Most don’t know that current safety standards are so completely at variance with genuine scientific evidence as to be truly absurd: in fact, our regulatory authorities are supporting the unfolding of a public health disaster. There simply is no research proving the safety of this technology as we know it. None at all.


Wireless technology has undergone no genuine safety tests because existing standards only apply to anything above 2.4 gigahertz of the radio spectrum, and anything below that level was simply assumed safe when commercial standards were adopted in 1997. This rests on the assumption that non-thermal radiation is harmless; non-thermal means not-heat producing. Radio waves and microwaves do produce heat, but only at very high concentrations. At low concentrations they do not produce heat but, instead, cause other equally serious problems affecting all organs of the body.

This problem started with Hermann Schwan, inventor of the microwave oven. As a scientist who worked for the Nazi regime, he was brought to the U.S. in 1947 along with 1,400 others under “Operation Paperclip” which allowed them to escape war crime prosecution in return for employment with the U.S. government. Schwan became a professor in Pennsylvania and continued radar research. He believed that radio and microwaves could only be harmful at intensities above 100 milliwatts per square centimeter when they produce heat. He added a safety factor of 10, and in 1953 announced the safety limit for humans at 10 microwatts per square centimeter (10 mW/cm2) which in 1965 was accepted as doctrine.

This “safe” level allowed the military to continue using radiation for their own purposes. This standard also saved the U.S. government untold millions in liability payments to injured soldiers and industrial workers from the war years and provided liability protection into the future. And real estate companies were delighted because the former restrictions on developing land too close to radiation facilities no longer applied. Had the already known facts about harm from non-thermal levels of radiation informed the making of this safety standard, some 498,000 acres of valuable real estate would have been lost to the market. (See Becker and Brodeur listed at end.)

Schwan and the scientists of his generation already knew of the “radiation sickness” reported by wartime radar technicians who often became blind from cataracts. Indeed, it was because of these reports that the discussion about a need for a safety standard began. At the very time that Schwan’s standard was developed, the Soviets were microwaving the U.S. embassy staff in  Moscow to see if this wartime radar/microwave technology could disrupt information, addle brains, and mess with behaviour among the embassy staff. It sure did. The U.S. government was fully aware of this Soviet espionage project, but kept silent for years – just to see what would happen. After all, it was a perfect science project (for the sake of which the glaring ethical inconsistency with the 1940s US-led Nuernberg trials was conveniently ignored). The Germans doing medical experiments on people was evil; this project, however, could be massaged to aid some greater good. The U.S. ambassador died of cancer and many staff members developed those forms of cancer, birth defects, infertility and more which are characteristic of non-thermal radiation exposure. Not until 1976 did this government betrayal of its own staff become the subject of congressional investigation.


Today, the complete bibliography of more than 2,000 scientific reports on non-thermal radiation damage compiled before 1970 are available. They were declassified by the military in 1971 (see  

When cell phones hit the market in the early 1990s and WiFi for computers was invented, it was already known what damage these products were capable of causing. Most importantly, that early literature, now supported by an ever-growing body of high-tech and epidemiological research, negates the assertion that just “some” people are “hypersensitive”. That same myth was used for decades to downplay Multiple Chemical Sensitivity as well. The profit from war gadgets, communication technology, and pesticides is simply too big to resist; better to blame those few weirdos who stand in the way of profit.

To put this “hypersensitivity” of the few into perspective, consider Swedish and American research published last fall which shows that within the coming decade we are likely to face a 25-fold increase of brain cancer incidence worldwide. There is no way that any government or insurance company can pay for this.  Not surprisingly, two of the world’s largest insurance companies, Lloyds and Swiss Re, have recommended exclusion clauses to the entire industry for damage from long-term use of such radiation-producing gadgets.


Researchers have found that cell phone use impairs DNA cellular repair, and has caused a sharp rise in brain cancer (documented from cell phone use over the past decade). The facts became so unavoidable that the usually arch-conservative World Health Organization had no choice last summer but to declare radiofrequency electromagnetic fields (RE-EMF) produced by cell phones, Bluetooth, cordless phones, Smart Meters, baby monitors, and WiFi to be a Class B carcinogen (like asbestos and DDT).

True, the actual mechanism by which this low-level radiation caused harm was not understood in the 1940’s, even though the fact of harm was known and documented. Today, our understanding is so thorough, it exceeds the evidence we have of the harm done by DDT, asbestos, and smoking by far. Yet, the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP), established in 1992, continues to stick to Schwann’s standard and even deliberately misquotes, disguises, or ignores this enormous body of knowledge. It continues to provide guidelines to governments and industry based on research published before WiFi technology had even left the laboratory and become commercially available. To support these absurd guidelines, even fraudulent research projects were undertaken in the UK (see Mark Anslow).

In Canada an interesting case of suppression of evidence exists in the federal Report LTR-CS-98 of April 1973. It provided the evidence that microwave radiation is an “environmental pollutant” and a “threat to human health.” And yet Health Canada established its Code 6 by following ICNIRP guidelines for radio frequencies and publicly repeated the propaganda about non-thermal radiation being safe as recently as September 2010.

The many international resolutions presented by scientists to governments the world over demanding the public be protected from this technology are simply ignored, but their urgency is increasing. When cell phones first became available in the early 90’s, the Council of Europe, aware of the science since the 1930s about the dangers of radar to human health, requested that young people in particular be protected from such commercial devices. Last April, the Council did so again, in even stronger terms and armed with even more research. In February of this year, the Ontario Teachers’ Union came to the defense of their students’ safety and demanded a general WiFi blackout in schools. Some schools have done so already (Globe & Mail, Feb 13, 2012).

There is no doubt that we live in a time in which science consistently takes a back seat to industry interests and that governments consistently support industry, not public health or medical facts. If you suspect that government is selling us out, body and soul, to toxic industries for profit, you are not mistaken.

Just like the FDA’s Dr. David Graham, and Health Canada’s Shiv Chopra, the radiation industry too has its whistleblowers: Barrie Trower, as reported in the Toronto Star on August 26, 2010, is a former British Secret Service Microwave Weapons Specialist who recently spoke at the University of Toronto. He stated that Canada “is one of the world leaders in microwave radiation research,” having documented the first recognized symptoms of radiation sickness in 1932 in concert with the U.S. government. Canada shares 13 secret code names for this research which documents the damage. Trower also pointed out that “there isn’t a school in the world that hasn’t seen an increase in aggression [and other behavioural problems] when WiFi was introduced.” He stated: “By 1971 we knew everything that needed to be known. A 1976 document summarizing U.S. Defense Intelligence research is the saddest and most despicable document ever published in history.” The document lists all of the health hazards caused by wireless devices and concludes: “This should be kept secret to preserve industrial profit.” Trower also cited a 1950’s report stating: “If this paper becomes known around the world, it will threaten military and commercial interests.” He especially condemned Health Canada’s Code 6, stating that the science-based safety level published in the BioInitiative Report is 0.1 microwatts per cm2 – not Canada’s 600 to 1,000 mW/cm2!

Due to the determined suppression of the evidence over three quarters of a century, it is vitally important to get legal rulings that create a foundation for appropriate liability and the defense of public health through successful case law. That will force the invention of better technology. Last year the famous microwave activist Arthur Firstenberg brought a case regarding deployment of cell phone-related technology before the federal district court in New Mexico on the basis of the industry’s infringement of the Americans with Disability Act. The judge ruled “that the Telecommunica-tions Act preempts the Americans with Disabilities Act, even if such an interpretation would condemn a class of citizens to death because of their disabilities.” The judge also ruled that the Equal Protection Clause and the Due Process Clause of the U.S. Constitution’s 14th Amendment was not applicable.

An appeal was launched on February 21. My hunch is that because of the denial of fundamental human rights, this legal action will now move out of the polarization between industry and science and into the territory of what lawyers call “first principles,” in this case liability law and established case law on harm done from whatever source.

Yes, the danger posed by EMF radiation is significant, but it is possible to save yourself and your loved ones. In Part 2 of this article, I will share the information and resources that I used to restore my health and make my home and workplace safe.  Put simply, the answer to bad technology is not no technology, but good technology, just as bad medicine is cured by good medicine.


• M. Anslow, “The Gathering Brainstorm”, The Ecologist, April 25, 2008
• R. Baan et al. “carcinogenicity of radiofrequency electromagnetic fields”, The Lancet, vol. 12, issue 7, July 2011
• BioInitiative Report 2007 (via google)
• P. Brodeur, “The Zapping of America – Microwaves, their Deadly Risk and the Cover-up”, Norton, 1977
• EM-Radiation Research Trust: Smart Meters-Smarter Practices: Solving Emerging Problems: UK: Dr. I. Jamieson, 2008
• R. O. Becker MD & G. Selden, The Body Electric – Electromagnetism and the Foundation of Life, Quill, 1985
• Canada Report LTR-CS-98, April 1973: Environmental Pollution by Microwave Radiation – A Potential Threat to Human Health, by J.A. Tanner et al., Dept of Anatomy, Queen’s University, Kingston, Ontario
• Canadian Human Rights Commission, The Medical Perspectives of Environmental Sensitivities, May 2007. Google.
• Council of Europe April 11, 2011, - full report to EU Parliament
• D. Davis, Disconnect, Dutton, 2010
• H. Ferrie, The Damaging Effects of Electropollution, Vitality, April 2011
• A. Firstenberg, Microwaving Our Planet: The Environmental Impact of the Wireless Revolution, Cellular Phone Task Force, 1997
• T. Gutschi et al. “Impact on cell phone use on men’s semen parameters”, Andrologia, May 19, 2011
• O. Hallberg & L. L. Morgan, “The potential impact of mobile phone use on trends in brain and CNS tumors, Neurology & Neurophysiology, S5-003, 2011, Open Access Journal
• S. Milham MD, Dirty Electricity – Electrification and the Diseases of Civilization, iUniverse 2010
• L. Morgan, “High frequency transitions on electrical wiring: A missing link in increasing diabetes and asthma?” presented at the 39th Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Environmental Medicine
• Non-Thermal Effects and Mechanisms of Interaction Between Electromagnetic Fields and Living Matter – ICEMS Monograph of the European Journal of Oncology, Vol. 5, 2010 (via google)
• Royal Society Report for Health Canada, 1999:
• C.W. Smith & S. Best, Electromagnetic Man, J. M. Dent & Sons, 1989
• A. Terpstra, Concerned Parents Protest as Telecom Invades Schools, Vitality, October 2010
• B. Trower, Secret Report on Cell Phone Dangers and TETRA (Report for Police Federation of England and Wales), Nov. 25, 2004 (

Article Tags: vitality magazine, electropollution, helke ferrie, barrie trower, emf radiation, microwave oven dangers, brain cancer, whistleblower, dangers of cell phones, hazards of smart metres

About the Author

More Articles by Helke Ferrie

Helke Ferrie is the owner and director of KOS Publishing, devoted to the politics of medicine. For more information, visit

User Comments

Dalton Jantzi, Toronto, ON
April 4, 2012 7:23pm

I found this article very informative and somewhat frightening. Thank you for including it in the magazine. It is important that we become more aware of all that is happening behind the scenes and what is and is not being shared by those who guard this important research. Much appreciated.

soapbox jill
April 16, 2012 1:56pm

When one law trumps another, such as the TCA trumping the ADA in the U.S., and it results in illness and death, the end of civilization is upon us. Most of the people act like lemmings about wireless gadgets. We canaries in the mine are not being listened to. It looks like many more will have to join us first. How sad.

Kathryn Aunger, Tweed, Ontario
April 25, 2012 7:51pm

At a recent meeting in Mississauga, it was brought to our attention that 35% of the current population is Electro-sensitive and that by 2017 over 65% of the population will be sensitive to this type of pollution.  I own a certified organic farm in rural Ontario.  Our neighbor has agreed to put up a tower.  The amount of research on this subject is overwhelming.  If this type of pollution is harmful to humans then it is equally harmful to our pets, livestock and agriculture.  What about the bees.  This subject is HUGE.  Perhaps we need to get good and frightened to wake up as a collective society and do something about it.  The powers to be are doing everything in their power to keep putting up towers and keep it all hush, hush, hush. Unacceptable!

bernadette slosmanis, prince george, b.c.
April 29, 2012 7:19pm

It’s sad but true that most people act like lemming about wireless gadgets and the “canaries in the mine are not being listened to”.  We just have to keep going because truth wins in the end. Think of the movies we’ve seen with grand scenarios of good versus evil - Austin Powers’ Mr Evil comes to mind & there are many more.

John McPhee, Santa Fe, NM
May 2, 2012 2:24pm

Thanks so much for such a well written, organized and comprehensive article on the history, science and politics of non-thermal radiation.  This will be extremely useful in my policy and public education work in New Mexico, which started some years ago when Arthur Firstenberg solicited my assistance.  Despite the frustration of public ignorance, denial and the US government’s ongoing blanket protection of the telecommunications industry with the 1996 Telecommunications Act, I have no regrets for getting involved.  My entire second career of the past 16 years has been devoted to the health and safety of pregnant women and small children, and I cannot think of a hazard that has become more ubiquitous in the environment, ever.  Time is of the essence, and let us all keeping moving to solutions as rapidly as possible.

Jerry Flynn, Kelowna, B.C.
May 3, 2012 12:52pm

This is the first time in my life I’ve thanked someone for writing such a frightening article, but I am extremely grateful that you have done so. In my own small way, I’m trying to be “the messenger” here in my own neighbourhood and am constantly amazed at the public’s general apathy and resignation, and their blind trust in government officials,especially in Health Canada. Again, my sincere thanks.

Roland Roy, Maine
May 4, 2012 10:58am

Brilliant article!  This is refreshing news since it flies in the face of all the news or lack of news found in mainstream media that never tells people about the dangers of cell phones, cell towers, wifi, cordless phones, etc.  As Mark Twain said ” If you don’t read the newspapers, you are uninformed, but it you do, you are misinformed.”  Today we live in a world where media keeps the population both uninformed and misinformed.  This one article helps people become informed about the truth of real health hazards associated with all wireless devices that were designed without appropriate safeguards to preserve the health of people as well as all living things on planet earth.
May God Bless you for the courage to write and publish this article to warn people of electromagnetic harm caused by the wireless telecommunications industry.

Beverly Allen, Kelowna, BC
April 23, 2013 2:58am

I thank you very much for some truth about dangers and health hazards of EMF which are being suppressed by the government and Canada Health officials.  I have a 800 KW line over my Kootenay property; and BC Utilities Commission only listens to whatever the electric companies say.  I would like to have an independent company/EMF tester on my property and for others as well; and independent inspectors monitoring Fortis, BC Hydro and BCUC; like they finally got unbiased investigators for police cases.  If the companies know when the inspectors are coming; they can make sure everything is set to meed Code 6 which is under review.  We also need the new act on meters repealed; made and enforced by the Liberal government!  It is not democratic to force smart meters on us – or we risk them cutting off our power!  Please can somebody stand up and address this?

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