Was Yasser Arafat Killed By Polonium Poisoning?

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I find this new development fascinating, not for any lost admiration of Arafat, but because it reads more like a spy novel. Given Arafat's predilection for dramatic flourishes, I imagine he'd approve himself. It's so much more interesting than the rather nasty whispers about him dying of AIDS. But it does open up a Pandora's box of questions:

This week, Yasser Arafat’s widow has called for the late Palestinian leader’s body to be exhumed after scientists in Switzerland found elevated traces of radioactive polonium-210 on clothing he allegedly wore before his death in 2004.[..]

Scientists caution that traces on Arafat’s clothing aren’t sufficient proof of poisoning. Exhuming his body would a surer method. Derek Hill, a radiological science expert at University College London, said eight years after Arafat’s death in 2004, any polonium would have decayed and would be far less radioactive than it was at the time. But he says it would still be much higher than normal background levels, and with an autopsy it should be possible to tell “with a pretty high confidence” whether Arafat had polonium in his body when he died.

The case of who poisoned Russian spy Alexander Litvinenko has yet to be solved, some six years ago, primarily due to a lack of cooperation from Russian agencies. Likewise, I doubt we'd ever get to the truth of who poisoned Arafat, if it turns out to be true.


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