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America's ongoing disgraceful legacy from using Agent Orange in Vietnam

One might have hoped that the country that is forever lecturing other countries about human values, decency, the rule of law and democracy - looking at you the USA - would not only not have used Agent Orange in the Vietnam War, but at the very least jumped to the fore to materially assist those affected by the chemical.   truthdig reports.....



Tran Thi Le Huyen, 23, in a wheelchair at her family home in Danang, Vietnam, in 2007. Her family once lived near the highly contaminated Danang Airbase; her father was a driver for the U.S.-backed South Vietnamese government during the war

"The war in Vietnam resulted in the deaths of more than 58,000 Americans and more than 3 million Vietnamese. Twenty years ago, the United States and Vietnam normalized diplomatic relations in an effort to put the terrible legacy of the war behind them. But for the survivors—both Vietnamese and American—the war continues. About 5 million Vietnamese and many U.S. and allied soldiers were exposed to the toxic chemical dioxin from the spraying of Agent Orange. Many of them and their progeny continue to suffer its poisonous effects.

Agent Orange was a chemical, herbicidal weapon sprayed over 12 percent of Vietnam by the U.S. military from 1961 to 1971. The dioxin present in Agent Orange is one of the most toxic chemicals known to humanity.

Those exposed to Agent Orange during the war often have children and grandchildren with serious illnesses and disabilities. The international scientific community has identified an association between exposure to Agent Orange and some forms of cancers, reproductive abnormalities, immune and endocrine deficiencies and nervous system damage. Second- and third-generation victims continue to be born in Vietnam as well as to U.S. veterans and Vietnamese-Americans in this country.

There are 28 “hot spots” in Vietnam still contaminated by dioxin. These hot spots still affect the people who live there and eat the crops, land animals and fish."


 



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