16th July 2010, 01:16 PM
We all know about the Vietnam war which happens almost 30 years ago. Do you know that even today, Vietnamese are still suffering from the war. The statistic shows that 4.9 million people are exposed to Agent Orange, resulting in 400,000 death and 500,000 children born with birth defects.
In an effort known as Operation Ranch Hand, close to 45,000,000 litres of Agent Orange was sprayed over 3.6 million acres of Vietnam from 1962 to 1971 by the US military. The aim is to defoliate rural/forested land, depriving guerrillas of food and cover, and as part of a general policy of forced draft urbanization by destroying the ability of peasants to support themselves in the countryside. The dioxin in Agent Orange has a half–life of one to three years in surface soil, and up to 12 years in interior soil.
US Vietnam veterans, who were exposed, filed a lawsuit against the makers of Agent Orange in 1978. Six years later, the parties reached a class action settlement that would set up a trust fund of $180 million to benefit the injured veterans. Unfortunately, the amount of the fund was not enough to compensate all Agent Orange victims. Also, many veterans were not aware of their rights to receive payment. To make matters worse, the settlement cut–off date was 1994. Veterans that developed a disease related to Agent Orange after this date could not be compensated from the fund, even though diabetes and many cancers take several years to develop. They also would not be allowed to take their cases against Agent Orange manufacturers to court. The manufacturer is Dow Chemical.
However, nothing was done for the Vietnamese victims. 2-3 generations of Vietnamese are living in the shadow of Agent Orange. US has not fulfilled its moral and formal obligations to assist the victims in Vietname and clean up the land. There is a campaign started by US veterens, Vietnamese Americans and all concerns called Vietname Agent Orange Relief and Responsibility Campaign aimed at raising awareness on the forgotten victims, achieve justic and accountability for the victims and raising public funds to help the victims.
While the US military are accusing Iran of Nuclear intentions, Iraq of harbouring WMD, North Korea of Nuclear and chemical warheads. It is they themselves who have used all of these in actual warfare. This is really a case of the pot calling the kettle black. They are definitely far from the Hollywood movies that portrayed their courageous attempts to rescue and save the world. What other atrocities have the US military conducted? Are the US military credible super powers anymore?
17th July 2010, 01:59 AM
17th July 2010, 02:34 AM
Re: Agent Orange
Some big corporation should lead charity campaigns to help the victims affected by Orange.
Apple would make a good candidate....
17th July 2010, 02:39 AM
Re: Agent Orange
Banana Republic maybe can chip in too ?
War, in any geographic location is always nasty. Hope we will never have to practice in reality what we have been training annually for in the future of Singapore.