Thursday, February 24, 2011

Fort Detrick, Gagetown, Love Canal, Fort Ritchie, Camp Lejeune, Times Beach, Vietnam - Connect the Dots

Agent Orange Protesters Line the Streets Around Fort Detrick
Reported by: Dawn White
Wednesday, February 23 2011
FREDERICK, MD - Protesters dressed in orange lined the streets around Fort Detrick Wednesday afternoon, hoping their signs and presence would send a clear message to the Army and government, who is staying relatively tight-lipped about the controversy.
"I had an idea to come up and do a little protest because of the lack of information that I've received from Fort Detrick concerning other military bases where Agent Orange was tested around the United States," said Lou Krieger, a Vietnam veteran.
Protesters included some with the Kristen Renee Foundation, an organization that believes testing of Agent Orange at Fort Detrick has caused a cancer cluster in neighborhoods surrounding the base, and groups of Vietnam veterans now living back in the states.

"We're losing several veterans from the Vietnam Era at a young age," said Patrick Burke, a Vietnam veteran. "The average age is around 57, 58 years old."
People came all the way from Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina to take part in the protest.

Vietnam Veterans Protest At Fort Detrick Over Agent Orange
FREDERICK, Md. (WUSA) -- A dozen Vietnam veterans protested outside Fort Detrick on Wednesday. They say testing the herbicide on the base during World War II is causing health problems for residents now.

Some of the veterans say they have serious health problems, including liver failure and deteriorating autoimmune systems, because of being exposed to Agent Orange.

In Vietnam, they were exposed to it directly. But in Frederick, no one knew Agent Orange was sprayed at Fort Detrick until recently.


U.S. Army Corps of Engineers readjusts estimate of amount of Agent Orange used by Fort Detrick
By Stephanie Mlot
News-Post Staff

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers readjusts estimate of amount of Agent Orange used by Fort Detrick

About 20 to 30 pounds of an Agent Orange ingredient may have been sprayed by the Army on sections of Fort Detrick between 1944 and 1968, according to a U.S. Army Corps of Engineers official.

Randal Curtis, program manager for the St. Louis district of USACE, said at Wednesday night's Fort Detrick Restoration Advisory Board meeting that the 16.82 pounds previously reported may conceivably be lower than what was actually used.

Searching through thousands of government documents, including technical reports, lab notes and maps, Curtis' office has been concentrating on Agent Orange chemicals, including 2, 4, 5-T, one of the main ingredients.

During World War II, Fort Detrick sprayed 2, 4, 5-T chemicals used as plant growth inhibitors over small plots of tomato, soybean, lima bean, corn and other crops. They measured results by how tall plants grew, or what the outcome was of the produce that came off the plants, Curtis said.

Estimated total amount of spray was about 100 grams, he said, with the equivalent of a gram about the weight of a $1 bill.

Report details Agent Orange use at Fort Detrick
Fort Detrick has released a preliminary archive search report on its past Agent Orange use as the Kristen Renee Foundation began to ramp up its efforts to prove that the Army post caused a cancer cluster in Frederick.

According to the report, which was posted online Tuesday, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers found that Fort Detrick tested an estimated 16.82 pounds of Agent Orange and similar defoliants between 1944 and 1951.

In a news release, Fort Detrick noted that the amount tested was relatively small.

"During 1969 alone, the national average for use of the exact same chemical was roughly 1.12 pounds per acre, which equates to more than 8.9 million pounds used nationwide to include farm, lawn care, right of way, private property, aquatic area applications," the news release states. "There is no difference in the compounds used by the military during this time and those that were commercially available."

Army tested 16+ pounds of defoliants at Fort Detrick, new report says
A preliminary Army report shows that Fort Detrick tested an estimated 16.82 pounds of Agent Orange and similar defoliants between 1944 and 1951.

The preliminary archives search report was requested after residents grew concerned that past testing of Agent Orange could be linked to cancer cases in Frederick.

The archived records show that the Chemical Warfare Service at Fort Detrick in 1944 gave the plant Research Branch “the mission of developing chemical agents to destroy or reduce the value of crops.” This mission led to the creation of a slew of chemicals in the Agent Orange family.

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