January 15, 2009
Agent Orange devastates generations of Vietnamese

During the Vietnam War, the U.S. dropped millions of gallons of Agent Orange, a toxic defoliant, on Vietnam in an attempt to remove the jungle used for cover by communist forces.

Decades later, civilians still suffer the consequences. Dioxin still lurks in Vietnam’s soil, causing deformities which are passed on from generation to generation.

Worldfocus correspondent Mark Litke and producer Ara Ayer travel to Vietnam and witness the devastating effects the toxin has left behind.

For more information on efforts to aid the victims of Agent Orange, visit the Vietnam Friendship Village.

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32 comments

#32

My husband went to viet Nam three times. He died from myelofibrosis, which I believe could have been caused by agent orange. He was treated at a cancer treatment clinic. He developed the symptons in the early 1990s. But was not diagnosed until 2003. He served 20 years in the USMC and retired in the 1970. Should I Retain an Attorney to find out if I am elegible for VA benefits?

#31

I am one of the Cuban children that came from Cuba without he parents and was part of the Peter Pan children, I’ve been told that Chanel 13 has shown documentary of those children and I would like to get a copy of it. I don’t know the name of the documentary, you’ve shown it several times. Can I purchase a copy of the documentary, it measns a lot to me. Thank you.

#30

Anyone know how to get a copy of Van Sanderson GUAM CD. His email is not active, or do they knowhow to get a hold of him so I can request a copy of his CD.
PLEASE CONTACT ME AT dek1957@yahoo.com
Kaiser USAF 1974-1980

#29

Perfect Title,fruit large judge settlement less decision fashion protection cross desire threat particular bloody new representative and yourself disappear press even heat experience cost discipline peace much within purpose actually use contribution box life police guest expense land mainly part avoid device settlement soft expert requirement nice definition brother announce term relate curriculum solicitor surround least quiet no-one view volume customer lunch otherwise know island literature variation mass hotel term separate daughter bank vital conclusion environment observation concentration might understanding close farmer play distance contract figure letter inform flow or entry trouble range

#28

Ed Jackson-Please contact me at rubvan@nvbell.net. I have lots of info on Guam and the contamination. I have made up a cd about all of it including AO.
Six cases have now been won and all of these cases used part or all the information I sent to them.
There is a huge section on bluewaternavy.org about Guam and the severe contamination.
Anyone can contact me for the information.

#27

The VA has added some diseases to its list of diseases presumed to be caused by Agent Orange exposure: Parkinson’s disease, B cell leukemias, iischemic heart disease. If a Vietnam Vet applied for benefits based on the claim that Agent Orange caused him/her to suffer one of these diseases and was denied, there is a really good chance the claim would be approved now if they reapply. We can help: http://veterans-benefits-denial.com/.

#26

I served in Vietnam from 71 to 72 almost at the ennd, today I have diabetes,high colesterol, plus other men problems, and most recently have been experiencing severe joint pain on both L/R/ forearms elbows, left hand knuckle area, I cannot bend my forefinger. My finger on both hands clam up especially at night. Just wondering if any of you fellowbrothers are having the same problems?

#25

In 1972 and 1973 I transported AO drums to/from the Navy Base and Andersen AFB and Northwest Field on Guam. Some of these drums leaked, and the USN would take those with “minor” leaks out to sea for disposal. Those drums with “major” leaks we threw off a small cliff on Northwest Field onto what appeared to be a dump with years of junk, drums airplane parts, broken wood, ect. there.

In 2007, I was diagonosed with Hodgkin’s disease, which I firmly believe was caused by AO exposure from Guam. While on Guam, I lived in the Marbo Barracks complex, and showered and drank water supplied to Marbo and Andersen.

I have been fighting with the VA Waco, TX office since then. I was “approved” for a “non-service connected disability” for my Hodgkins, which does nothing for me, or many other vets. I need to receive a “service connected disability” from the VA, as I can no longer work due to effects from Hodgkins and other health problems. I currently have an appeal of their decision with the VA DRO in Waco. There is a lot of help I have gotten help from Allen who was also in Guam, but apparently was not exposed to AO. I have also sent FOIA requests (sent in August 2009) to Andersen for AO storage, use, and disposal information, to the USAF MPC for info on other vets on Andersen when I was there, and the US EPA for additional reports on AO on Guam. I have not received any of the requests for my FOIA requests. yet. I may still need additional help from any former or retired US Military member in Guam during that period, who can help substanciate my claim.

Thank you,
Ed Jackson

#24

Senator Schumer, Senator McCain, Senator Akaka, Congressman Higgins,
NY State Senator Cathy Young,

I am writing to you again about Agent Orange (AO), Agent White, and other herbicides which I sprayed on Andersen AFB, Guam and the off base cross country pipeline, air force fuel tank farms at Potts Tank Farm, Tumon Tank Farm, NAS Agana Booster Pump Station and the Underground Naval Fuel Supply Depot. In the preparation, mixing and spraying we added demineralized wwater, heavy propeller driven oil used in C124 Globemasters and diesel fuel to the powdered form of these chemical herbicides. We did so the defoliant herbicides would adhere to the plant life to eradicate it quicker from the security fences around Andy I, Andy II, drum storage area, Yigo oil packaged warehouse quansett huts near Marbo Barracks, the flightline hydrant pump houses, fuel valve pits, etc. The article below was sent to me some time back and I did not give it much thought till now as new evidence has emerged from the National Institute of Research completing it’s findings on the long term affects of the herbicides used during the Vietnam War most notably AO.
I believe that after conversation with the Buffalo NY Veterans Administration that United States Congress needs to direct the VA or the US court of appeals to order an immediate remand of all claims denied to Agent Orange exposure especially those which were outside the country of Vietnam especially Guam, Okinawa and Thailand. Those of us who are still alive but most assuredly dying from this exposure and which are children and our children’s children and our children’s children’s children will suffer from the genetic changes which are reaching astronomical proportions in the form of heart diseases, respiratory diseases, blood diseases, spinal diseases, birth deformities, etc. I am asking you as leaders of our nation help us that are dying, us that are suffering, us that are pushed aside by the VA and forgotten. PLEASE I am begging you to please take and active role in directing the Veterans Administration to actively remand all denied claims of Agent Orange exposure outside of Vietnam to include GUAM, OKINAWA AND THAILAND. I was told by the VA in Buffalo NY yesterday that they will not seek out those veterans who were denied nor all of those dependent children of those veterans who would have been entitled to Dependency Indemnity Compensation DIC from the exposure of their father’s and mother’s to Agent Orange, Agent White and the other herbicides used during the Vietnam WAR. I was told by the Veterans Administration in Buffalo NY yesterday that they have not been directed to do anything to help those veterans and their children in this regard.
The key words for Congress to use in addressing this issue is “VEGETATION CONTROL”

In a message dated 5/21/2007 1:44:25 P.M. Eastern Daylight Time, colonel-dan@sbcglobal.net writes:
AO & Benzine, did you mix or spray it?
Anyone who mixed AO with diesel, kerosene, gasoline to spray

Please contact: derrickdecker@cox.net

Purpose to get Myelofibrosis recognized as caused by AO, to prove AO was
mixed

http://www.bt.cdc.gov/agent/benzene/basics/facts.asp
Long-term health effects of exposure to benzene
The major effect of benzene from long-term exposure is on the blood.
(Long-term exposure means exposure of a year or more.) Benzene causes
harmful effects on the bone marrow and can cause a decrease in red blood
cells, leading to anemia. It can also cause excessive bleeding and can
affect the immune system, increasing the chance for infection.
Some women who breathed high levels of benzene for many months had irregular
menstrual periods and a decrease in the size of their ovaries. It is not
known whether benzene exposure affects the developing fetus in pregnant
women or fertility in men.
Animal studies have shown low birth weights, delayed bone formation, and
bone marrow damage when pregnant animals breathed benzene.
The Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) has determined that
benzene causes cancer in humans. Long-term exposure to high levels of
benzene in the air can cause leukemia, cancer of the blood-forming organs.

—–Original Message—–
From: derrickdecker@cox.net [mailto:derrickdecker@cox.net]
Sent: Saturday, May 19, 2007 1:25 PM
To: colonel-dan: sbcglobal.net
Subject: Help

Colonel Dan, I need help finding anyone who sprayed agent orange in vietnam.
Anyone who mixed AO with diesel, kerosene, gasoline to spray.
This is very important, possibly to hundreds, if not thousands of Vets.
Can you put out the word.I have statements from New Zealand, Australian
vets, but need 1st hand accounts from US Vets.

I have a bone marrow disease Myelofibrosis, I’m terminal have 1 maybe two
years, according to my DR. I have just completed my final BVA via a
teleconference with a Judge in DC, April 30. I supplied information and my
research regarding my illness. I have battled this claim for 4 years for
recognition as caused by AO. My illness is one of many directly linked to
Benzene, leukemias, etc. Mixing AO with kerosene, deisel fuel, gasoline to
spray, directly caused my illness, and the many other cancers VETS are
suffering from. This could answer many cases for Vets. The VA mandate to
research AO, only included AO and it’s components. These studies were and
are limited to just that, failing to recognize the total picture. benzene is
the cause of many Vets problems. My congressman, Gary Miller, CA has helped
my effort. He suggests I write congress and suggest hearings regarding this,
and allow congress to mandate further studies.
I need to this for all the families and those Vets, fighting for other
related diseases, unknowlingly caused by Benzene.

Having Myelofibrosis recognized as caused by AO, will open the door wide
for those Vets, suffering MPD’s Benzene is absolutely known to cause many
cancers. Bone marrow depression, immunilogical deficiencies, etc Recognition
will greatly advance the solutions for Vets.

Look what Benzene causes online, you;ll see what I;m talking about.

This, I pray will be a legacy of mine to help them.
Testimonies of Vets, who mixed these deadly components, who support my
premise.
Please help

Please help,
Marvin Derrick
519th MI Bn Vet 67-68

LeRoy:
Thanks for the letter and I agree with you. Here are links to articles I did on Agent Orange and the Heart.

http://www.geocities.com/dave_barker_amvet/AO-Heart.html

also

http://www.geocities.com/dave_barker_amvet/AO-Update-2007.html

Dave Barker

——————————————————————————–

From: RetAirForceMan@aol.com [mailto:RetAirForceMan@aol.com]
Sent: Thursday, August 09, 2007 9:05 AM
To: Barker, Dave (Chilli.OH); ladyjo@cableone.net; larry@nam-vet.net; GeorgeNoory@aol.com; chiefbmur@mindspring.com; cyoung@senate.state.ny.us; Donna.Coughlin@mail.house.gov; johnr@rossie.com; larrys@vawatchdog.org; mcafee@westfieldrepublican.com; mar_vic_cagurangan@yahoo.com; Rubvan@nvbell.net; theresa.kennedy@mail.house.gov
Cc: rgsjesshuster@charter.net
Subject: Agent Orange and other herbicides used in Vietnam, Guam (to include all others)

Dave,

I mixed this stuff on Guam at Andersen AFB Fuel Tank Farm Andy I and Andy II in a 750 gallon trailer with 50 lb bags with Oil and water. The oil made it adhere to the foliage under the cross country pipeline from Andersen AFB to the Naval base at the other end of the island to include tumon bay tank farm, potts tank farm near NCS, the NAS Agana booster station, fuel hydrant systems on the flightline area, oil storage quonsett huts in Yigo, Naval underground fuel storage tank farm near the USO Club in Agana and the Naval Base.

I wore a rubber apron, rubber gloves, a face shield when mixing and spraying this stuff but because of the Guam weather being so humid, so hot and unbearable that stuff came off because of heat exhaustion. I was always tasked with this because of being the lowest ranking man at the time 1968 to 1978 time frame. This stuff would blow back into my face with the white powder stuff because of the constant breeze at Andersen AFB.

Soon after retirement in Dec 1987, I was diagnosed with Spondiolysis and degenerative joint disease. I was denied employment by the US postal service in Buffalo NY because of my medical condition. I applied to disability claim with the VA and hence the battle for the next eighteen years which lead to an award of 70% service connected disability and 100% unemployable back to July 2004. I was diagnosed while in military service at Charleston AFB med clinic with high cholesterol and at risk of heart disease. I had several heart attacks and strokes between 1986 and 1995 without my knowledege of them being that until I was diagnosed with severe heart disease in Sept 1995. I underwent angioplasty on Sept 26, 1995 at Hamot Medical Center where them operated on me for eight hours which culminated in arterial ruptures to the Aorta and LAD. I was rushed to the Open Heart surgical unit and had complete cardio shutdown prior to the emergency open heart operation lasting over 12 hours. I remained in a vegetative state because of the near death of over an hour when the arteries ruptured. I remained in the intensive care unit for two weeks with the lost of much blood with several hematoma’s from the ruptures. They (De Angelo Heart Institute) performed radical triple by pass with the use of the back mammary artery and right leg harvesting of veins. I have since had to live with severe angina pain, grafting pain at the mammary point of harvesting and much legs swelling, water retention, and post surgical strokes in the face. I had my educational benefits taken from me when I was discharged after more than twenty years of active duty service because of the discontinuance of the old GI Bill which I was promised when I first enlisted on August 11, 1967 but was discontinued on 31 December 1989. I was one of those turned away by the VA and fought to survive through homelessness with my 3 month old daughter and starvation. The little money that I had was a measely 840 dollars a month that was taken from me for child support for my daughter that I raised and had custody of. This is a long story regarding that issue of injustice. I have since developed severe Stenosis of the spine from the back injury from military service that was denied for over eighteen years. The VA, DoD and federal government has given me hell since my retirement from active duty military service. I was forced to continue my education after retirement from active duty and borrowed money to keep going to school while enduring the heart disease and heart attacks and strokes. I was laughed at and ridiculed by the Defense Finance and Accounting Service at Columbus Ohio because they said I was faking my heart disease. They hated double dippers as I was called and was forced to work while enduring heart attacks and strokes at my desk. In the end, I physically crawled from my desk in the old McDonald Douglas building hanger at the Columbus Ohio airport on my hands and knees trying to leave to pick up my daughter from the day care at a local church. I went to a local hospital in Westerville Ohio near Columbus where I was diagnosed with a severe heart attack. I was told they were going to take my daughter from me and she would be placed in a foster home. I said NO and immediately drove back to Jamestown NY where my elderly mother helped me with my daughter and sought medical attention. I am telling you all of this because I believe my heart disease is from Agent Orange and I firmly believe my degenerative joint disease and stenosis is also. I have also had severe ChloroAcne on my back and face with huge leisons and infections while spraying the agents which is documented on my medical records from Andersen AFB. I also developed severe hives and immune problems at Andersen AFB which is also in my medical records. I was told that my thyroid has developed a cell structure which as I researched could be cancer. Thank you for your time.

#23

I wrote my first comment 16/1/2009 and I am now amazed at the lack of response I got to my request. Can you folks who write your blurb on this netline please give consideration to my next question: Do you honestly believe a crime had been committed when toxic dioxin chemical were sprayed and used in the living and work environment of military and civilian environments during the Vietnam War? This is an international survey on Human Rights…please comment to Email: crimehurts@bigpond.com

#22

I was quite disturbed by your story on Agent Orange and its effects on the Vietnamese; it put a pall on the rest of my evening, even as I was singing the wonderful music of Mozart at a local gathering. I couldn’t help but ponder what it must be like to eat poisoned food and live and work in a poisoned land. This is so distressing, and it perturbs me that our Ambassador to Viet Nam is denying any links. I almost feel like we gave everyone Thalidomide for breakfast. Thank you for bringing this story to light, upsetting as it is.

#21

The horrors of Vietnam from the use of agent orange, is being repeated again in Iraq by dropping American bombs made from depleted uranium. The people of Iraq and returning American soldiers have been contaminated with radiation from the radioactive dust that is dispersed in the air after the bombs explode. Read several articles written by Juan Gonzalez on Depleted Uranium (google it). Also, see the video: Hidden Wars of Desert Storm by Audrey Brohey & Gerard Ungerman.
U.S. troops tested positive for depleted uranium after returning from the Gulf War, suffering from kidney damage, headaches, nausea, dizziness, joint pain, blood in urine, numbness in hands, cancer and gave birth to babies born deformed from chromosome damage, missing 3 fingers in one hand, resembling babies born in Iraq after the Gulf War. Except for the NY Daily News investigative reports by Juan Gonzalez, the major news networks have remained silent on this story. It is important that Americans know what their country is doing to thousands of people in Vietnam, Iraq, or elsewhere, causing generations to suffer from cancers and deformities because we are poisoning their soil and air. World Focus should do a follow up story on the health effects of depleted uranium bombs on the Iraqi people and put it on national TV (prime time) for the entire nation to see. Don’t wait for 40 years to report it!

#20

Somneone should serve up an Agent Orange coctail to that US Ambassador/Liar, Michalak, and then re-ask him the same question as to whether or not he thinks Agent Orange is harmful.

#19

I remember this issue as a child and it’s called “chat doc da cam” literally mean “orange poison”. I have relatives that is affected by this chemical. Vietnam was a laboratory for the US much of its modern weaponry. the U.S is responsible for every modern wars so everyone is screwed. They will never take responsible for anything in the name of spreading democracy.

#18

Carlo Albanese,
New York

A great news piece and coverage on Agent Orange by World Focus. U.S. Veterans and the world need more coverage on Agent Orange, especially in America for Veterans.

There is not much more that can be discussed about the history of Agent Orange and the horrific damage Agent Orange has done to human life regardless of who that human live has been, when and where. The scientific and living proof of its impact and effects to date is living proof and historical evidence forty years later. American Veterans, their families and loved ones know the truth, it’s a known fact the U.S Government, and including Robert McNamara from 1962 to 1975 all knew. Veterans have been living it - dying from it; for some still alive and suffering from the accepted and not accepted in service connected illnesses that the U.S Department of Veteran Affairs selectively chooses to provide medical benefits for or denies such benefits to Vietnam Veterans and their families.

The cure from the Department of Veterans Affairs, is longevity, deny medical claims to Vietnam Veterans for in service related illnesses, decide what illnesses will be covered, never covered, wait until most Vietnam Veterans die from exposure to Agent Orange – Dioxin contamination then in 2009 attempt to pass long over due legislation for the remaining – living Vietnam Veterans. The victims and the villains continue in the U.S with the Department of Veterans Affairs. We know clearly who the victims are! It’s time to make the villains accountable and responsible for not correcting it. Past congressional leaders and now the 111 Congress and our elected representatives in Washington DC; from the top down must correct this problem with the Department of Veterans Affairs and provide for all Vietnam Veterans ill and dying from Agent Orange exposure. In country, out of country contaminated from exposure to Agent Orange for all illnesses on record or not on record as accepted in service illnesses only associated by the standards of NAS or IOM. National Academy of Science – Institute Of Medicine.

An American injustice to our Vietnam Veterans and an unacceptable inexcusable embarrassment to humanity.

#17

The US Ambassador will never admit to a connection of Agent Orange contamination because an admission may spark a rash of lawsuits against the U.S. Govt. in the World Court by Vietnamese and many others including non-nationals who lived, served in military units, and worked in the country during and after the War. As to Greg Mapes’ comment “do you have information on American Veterans exposed to agent orange other than what is available from the Veterans Administration”—-the information is everywhere, including in the post above yours! Just Google AGENT ORANGE!!

#16

This short film shows a heart-breaking example of bestiality. Not unexpectedly, the US Ambassador claims no proof of a link between the deformities and US military action; all very reminiscent of childhood leukaemia clusters around nuclear power stations.
No doubt the manufacturers of Agent Orange continue uncaringly to rake in their profits…..

#15

Dear Readers,
I am a New Zealand Vietnam War veterans and I must state the Australian and New Zealand Governments supplied on demand Toxic Dioxin Chemical Agent Orange during the Vietnam War. Vietnam veterans have stated agent orange was carried on their military ships and transported to Vietnam and stored at Vung Tau. Total blame must not stand alone with the American Government.

All who perpetrated this tragic happening must be brought to Justice. Serious damage has been done to innocent military and civilians lives, including the beauty of the Vietnamese food chain and environment. What took place with the supply on demand of toxic waste during the Vietnam War was a “WAR CRIME”. I have personally suffered the sad effects of toxic poisoning and many of my family and mates have died at early ages. I have witnessed deformed babies and that poison does not discriminate.

All persons who pervert the course of Justice on this agent orange issue will be dealt with according to Human Rights International Law. If you believe a War Crime has been committed be proactive and support my journey to bring these political criminals to justice. Address your support to: “War Crime” Clarence Ormsby JP NSW, P.O.Box 7072, Mannering Park NSW 2259 Australia

#14

Whenever the US claims that another country has weapons of mass destruction, teams of educators should be immediately dispatched to teach everyone who is suceptible to fall into the “go it alone” trap, and teach them simple self reflection why America IS NOT the greatest country on Earth.

#13

One need only look at the circumstantial evidence in both Viet Nam and among American veterans and their families, to know that the war has left an appalling legacy of frightful health effects to several generations of people. Historically the U.S.A. has been slow to recognize responsibility for its own soldiers, let alone for the citizens of a former enemy nation.

As America enters a new era and resets the moral compass, it is crucial that the government show our better side to the world. We are unable to repeal our use of herbicides during the war, but surely we have an ethical obligation to clean up a toxic mess, tend to the injured, and support scientific studies that could lead to remedial medical solutions. A long overdue post war collaboration, which strives to find medical, scientific and engineering solutions to the devastating aftermath of war could establish a different kind of global paradigm that would benefit us all. We owe it to our veterans, to the people of Viet Nam, and to our future.

For a historical view of the development and environmental effects of Agent Orange, with a focus on American veterans and their families, please see Vietnam: The Secret Agent at http://www.humanarts.org/projects/vietnam_thesecretagent.html

#12

The U$A must admit its responsibility and compensate the Agent Orange victims in Vietnam.

#11

Dear Friends,

Your programme on the effects of Agent Orange in Vietnam has brought the issue into the homes of many thousands of Americans and thousands in other countries. In doing so you have done a service to the victims of Vietnam who for many years have suffered the pain that Agent Orange brought to them and their families.

I state ‘their families’ as often the parents of the victims are forgotten. Many of the victims are youngsters born many years after the end ended in 1975, but as your broadcast showed many need 24-hour attention.

I was aware of the damage of Agent Orange before I made my first visit to Vietnam in 1989, then and each year since I have met many of the victims and their families in their homes, schools, clinics and hospitals such as the Tu Du in Ho Chi Minh City which you showed in your broadcast and which I visited at the end of November 2008.

During my visit of November I met again Nguyen Duc who I first met in 1989 who had been born conjoined with his brother Viet. They had, in 1988, been separated in an historic 14-hour operation. Duc is now married to Tuyen Thanh who I also met. They are devoted to the youngsters at Tu Du as the youngsters are to them.

It is to be regretted that in his interview the U.S. Ambassador repeated the ongoing excuse that Agent Orange has been proved to be the cause. This was said to me by a former ambassador to whom I replied “what of the many U.S. servicemen and women, and their children that have come down with illness and disabilities related to Agent Orange and to whom compensated has been paid.” The reply was “they were injured in serving their country therefore they received compensation”.

Let me end by quoting Nguyen Duc who in an interview with an American journalist said: ““I find it ironic that on one hand you put Saddam Hussein on trial for using biological warfare, but in another country where you sprayed chemicals for warfare, you neglect your responsibility.

The United States must admit its responsibility and compensate the Agent Orange victims in Vietnam. It is your moral obligation. Sooner or later, it has to be done.”

No words could have said it better.

Len Aldis

#10

Very informative.

#9

The situation in Viet Nam, regarding Agent Orange/Dioxin, has been ongoing for decades. The responsibility for impacts, both ecological and human, lie with the US military’s use of this herbicide with the blessing of the US government.

In a report prepared by Admiral Zumwalt in 1990, important facts were presented with quotes from a letter from Dr. James R. Clary to Senator Tom Daschle (September 9, 1988):

“When we (military scientists) initiated the herbicide program in the 1960’s, we were aware
of the potential for damage due to dioxin contamination in the herbicide. We were even
aware that the ‘military’ formulation had a higher dioxin concentration than the ‘civilian’
version due to the lower cost and speed of manufacture. However, because the material was
to be used on the ‘enemy’, none of us were overly concerned. We never considered a
scenario in which our own personnel would become contaminated with the herbicide. And,
if we had, we would have expected our own government to give assistance to veterans so
contaminated.”

The ’so called’ enemy has been dealing with the aftermath for over 30 years … and so too those US Viet Nam Veterans who were also impacted by the herbicide.

It is time to right a serious wrong. The continued denials of responsibility just don’t hold water anymore.

#8

Take all of the birth defects and put them in the same hospital and get them filmed by World Focus then claim the US is at fault and should pay. The old fellow who was supposedly covered in Agent Orange seems to be getting along quite well. Could it just be possible the birth defects are natural or caused by something else, such as the poisons in the chemicals that the Communists are noted for using in manufacturing? Agent Orange was used primarily in remote jungle/forest where there was no agriculture, yet you ply us with photos of rice fields. All of the Agent Orange used hardly covered 1/10,000 of South Vietnam. If there are rice fields that are contaminated it is the responsibility of the Vietnamese Government, not that of the U.S., to put them off limits. Not to do so is criminal but then the government of Vietnam is a criminal enterprise which has killed hundreds of thousands of its people. Now there’s a story.

#7

Actually the link between Agent Orange and genetic damage was PROVEN by Dr. Al Rowland and his team at the Institute of Molecular BioScience at Massey University in New Zealand. His report is published at our website the Agent Orange Association of Canada at http://www.agentorangecanada.com

#6

Susan Hammond’s comments are welcome. As she says, dioxin was not a “key ingredient” but a pollutant included due to negligence. Also, I believe US Ambassador Michalak misspoke when he said that the US does not believe there is sufficient scientific evidence to link exposure to AO to ANY health effects. The US acknowledges the links between AO exposure and certain diseases. But the link to genetic damage and birth defects has not been established. Finally, I would like to know where the estimate cited in the report of 150,000 victims of AO comes from. It is my understanding that there is no way to make any reliable estimate of the number of AO victims in Vietnam that would not be off by a factor of 10, and the Vietnamese government has in the past claimed there are millions of victims.

#5

PBS has presented an excellent report and Susan Hammond’s comments add important information.

Most Americans recall the Vietnam war or know about it and associate Agent Orange with it. Although rooted in that earlier war, dioxin still continues to ruin the health and destroy the life prospects of large numbers of Vietnamese as well as US Vietnam veterans. It is a current problem, part of the larger issue that Americans are beginning to recognize as their responsibility for people and the environment after a conflict in which the US has been engaged.

Since 2006 a number of American NGOs and private foundations have been working on this issue with the Vietnamese and some solutions are beginning to appear. Much more needs to be done, as the PBS report so graphically shows. This is a matter not only for the Vietnamese but an opportunity for America to restore its integrity and reputation in the world.

For more on what citizens groups are doing, please see http://www.fordfound.org/programs/signature/agentorange/overview.

#4

uncle sam has been the grand uncle of chemical ali. is there any weapon on earth now banned that has not been used by the u. s. first?

#3

Thank you for covering the impacts of Agent Orange on Vietnam during your visit to Vietnam. This is an issue I have been working on for more than a decade so it is nice to see World Focus cover the topic. A few minor editorial comments. Dioxin was not a ‘key ingredient’ in Agent Orange but was a contaminant from the manufacturing process of one of the two herbicides that made up Agent Orange, it was not needed for the purpose of killing vegetation in Vietnam. The manufacturers could have chosen to limit or remove the dioxin. Second, it is important to point out that dioxin is a fat soluble substance, so it enters humans through the food chain by eating the fat of animals and fish that have been feeding on dioxin hot-spots. It does not entry the food chain through rice or other plants which the footage that goes with the reporting may imply. Fortunately for Vietnam these hot-spots are limited, as the reporter notes, to the areas around former military bases where the herbicides were stored, so cleanup and containment will greatly reduce the risk of further human exposure to dioxin. So on this front, I am hopeful much progress can be made, particularly now that the US is starting to get involved in the effort after more than 30 years since the end of the war. However, there are tens of thousands of families in Vietnam who live in extreme poverty who are carrying the best they can for severely disabled children. The handful of centers such as those you profiled are only able to help a small number of those in need. Much more needs to be done to provide financial assistance, rehabilitation services, education and medical care for those impacted by Agent Orange. While the US in my opinion needs to do more, it will take a concerted effort to convince them it is the right thing to do for humanitarian reasons, even if they never acknowledge responsibility. In the meantime the families like those I work with in Vietnam can not wait and can use the support of your viewers. I also want to point out that many PBS stations have in their library of documentaries for broadcast a film called the The Last Ghost of War, which focuses on the impacts of Agent Orange on US veterans and in Vietnam. The film also focuses on the lawsuit Vietnamese citizens have filed against the chemical companies that produced the herbicides. In November, WNET and other stations began to show the film, particularly on PBS-World. I hope more stations pick it up and show it. Lastly, for more information about Agent Orange viewers can also visit http://www.warlegacies.org/AgentOrange.htm where there are links to scientific research, court documents, ways to help those impacted, news and other information about the long term impacts of Agent Orange on human health and the environment. Again Thank you for covering this topic.

#2

Do you have information on american veterans exposed to agent orange other then what is available from the veterans administration?

#1

this is sooooooooooooo! sad! The peace of US?

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