Discussion in 'Current Events' started by train, Oct 24, 2002.

  1. Ferret CPA Founder, Slacker

    Now, now. Let's not insult Texas. They're an okay state. I mean, if you want to talk stupid let's look at Alabama, Mississippi, West Virginia, and Maine...:)

    But seriously, I don't believe that Agent Orange was used in ODS. There was a number of soldiers that suffered effects from some of the other weapons - none of them "chemical". Some of the larger guns were firing depleted uranium that caused some of the soldiers operating the equipment to suffer conditions similar to radiaton sickness. Also, some of the smaller explosives had other long-term effects...


    "...but if you're going to make an omelette..."
  2. Ura Feline Lord of the Pit

    Agent Orange was the code name for a herbicide developed for the military, primarily for use in tropical climates. Although the genesis of the product goes back to the 1940's, serious testing for military applications did not begin until the early 1960's.

    The purpose of the product was to deny an enemy cover and concealment in dense terrain by defoliating trees and shrubbery where the enmy could hide. The product "Agent Orange" (a code name for the orange band that was used to mark the drums it was stored in, was principally effective against broad-leaf foliage, such as the dense jungle-like terrain found in Southeast Asia.

    The product was tested in Vietnam in the early 1960's, and brought into ever widening use during the height of the war (1967-68), though it's use was diminished and eventually discontinued in 1971.

    Agent Orange was a 50-50 mix of two chemicals, known conventionally as 2,4,D and 2,4,5,T. The combined product was mixed with kerosene or diesel fuel and dispersed by aircraft, vehicle, and hand spraying. An estimated 19 million gallons of Agent Orange were used in South Vietnam during the war.

    The earliest health concerns about Agent Orange were about the product's contamination with TCDD, or dioxin. TCDD is one of a family of dioxins, some found in nature, and are cousins of the dibenzofurans and pcb's.

    The TCDD found in Agent Orange is thought to be harmful to man. In laboratory tests on animals, TCDD has caused a wide variety of diseases, many of them fatal. TCDD is not found in nature, but rather is a man-made and always unwanted byproduct of the chemical manufacturing process. The Agent Orange used in Vietnam was later found to be extremely contaminated with TCDD

    During the testing phase of Agent Orange, use tests were carried out at Fort Detrick, Maryland, Eglin Air Force Base in Florida, and Camp Drum in New York. Other testing was also conducted in Thailand in the early 1960's.

    No. Title 38 of the United States Code prohibits veterans from suing the government for injuries suffered while in the military. A class action suit was filed in behalf of veterans in 1979 against the chemical companies and settled out of court. The final funds in this legal action were distributed by 1992. Additional attempts to sue the manufacturers have been attempted, and have been prohibited by the courts. The most strongly fought of these legal battles, Ivy vs. Diamond Shamrock was supported in behalf of the plaintiff by attorney generals in all fifty states, the Supreme Court, however, refused to hear the arguments and that case ended in 1992. In the parlance of the court, the issue is "res judicata" or "the matter is settled".

    Also from the CIA:

    We continue to conclude that Iraq did not use chemical weapons against Coalition forces. In our review of intelligence reporting and analysis of Iraq’s chemical agent stockpiles, we found no credible evidence of such use, and we were unable to corroborate any of the reported allegations of CW use in the Desert Storm time frame. On the basis of information on Iraqi Al Husayn (modified Scud) missile warheads recovered from both Saudi Arabia and Israel, we assess Iraq did not employ CW agents in warheads for Iraqi-modified Scud missiles. We believe no chemical bombs were used because Iraq was unable to attack Coalition troops with aircraft. The greatest potential threat was from chemical artillery shells and rockets because Iraqi units had the ability to fire these throughout the war and because these weapons had been stored at several locations south of Baghdad; even so, we do not believe these weapons were used, either. Intelligence information and UNSCOM accounting indicate that Iraqi 155-mm mustard shells were not moved to artillery units for use at the time of the ground war and about 13,000 shells remained at their storage areas near Khamisiyah and at Ukhaydir.13 In fact, Iraq claims—and intelligence corroborates—that during Desert Storm its troops moved thousands of 155-mm mustard shells and 122-mm nerve agent rockets out of bunkers and into the open to avoid contamination of their troops resulting from chemical weapon destruction by Coalition bombing.

    On numerous occasions, Coalition troops reported detection of or exposure to CW agents during military operations in the Persian Gulf. Although some DoD investigations are incomplete, thus far the Intelligence Community does not link any of these reports to chemical agents or weapons. On the contrary, we assess these reports were the result of false alarms, conventional munitions, other chemicals such as missile propellants, and other factors (see appendix N). We continue to follow DoD research on relevant troop reporting.

    Of note, we have recently revised our assessment on two well-known Coalition events—Czech CW detections in January 1991 and the blistering of a US soldier in March 1991—that the IC previously deemed to be credible CW events (see appendix N).

    We assess that the Czech detections in question were unlikely to be from a chemical agent. New information and analyses indicate there is no chemical-agent source corresponding to the detections; moreover, there are other more likely causes associated with constraints of the Czech detection system. Although the IC and DoD originally discounted the Czechs’ Desert Storm–era reports, the IC has been studying these chemical-agent detections since a Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA)–sponsored team met with Czech Government officials in October 1993. This delegation was provided details of two detections—the detection of airborne nerve agent on 19 January and a mustard puddle on 24 January 1991. Largely on the basis of the Czech procedures and detectors used, the IC and DoD subsequently assessed these were credible chemical-agent detections—though unconfirmed by US detections—but we were unable to identify the source of the chemical agents for either detection. However, new information and analyses indicate chemical agents were not likely to have been the cause of what are now assessed to be at least four Czech detections.

    In short, Iraqi forces didn't have Agent Orange. They had:
    CS - a riot control gas
    Cyclosarin - a nerve gas
    sarin - also a nerve gas
    sulfur mustard - causes burns and blistering
    VX - a much more powerful nerve gas

    The Coalition forces at the time didn't use chemical agents but instead favored things such as depleated uraniaum(DU) shells and basic tear gases in some places.
    The biggest chances of exposure were from the destruction of Iraqi storage bunkers in which there are several reported cases of possible exposure to certain chemical agents, but still none of them are agent orange.
    The entire idea of using agent orange in a desert is kinda silly when the entire point of the stuff is to kill vegetation. Also considering the other options available to the US and coalition forces at the time such as psychochemicals. Considered incapacitants, they include hallucinogenic compounds such as lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), 3-quinuclidinyl benzilate (BZ), and benactyzine. These agents alter the nervous system, thereby causing visual and aural hallucinations, a sense of unreality, and changes in the thought processes and behavior.
    They also have access to all the typical modern nerve agents, vomiting, blood, blister, and choking agents. To use a herbicide that needs to be air dropped to be truely effective would be pointless considering the other options. That and I doubt no soldier would have gone near the stuff considering what it did to people in Vietnam.

    sorry for being so long winded ;)
  3. train The Wildcard!!!...

    Wow - Thanks Ura - we were stationed at Eglin, but this was long after Orange apparently subsided(best I knew was the Rangers did their swamp training there)... whew, glad for that...
    -Do you know of any neutralizing chemicals that were ready for use in Desert Storm, My dad was in the 272nd(?-it's been 12 years) Chemical warfare unit in the reserves and was 3rd on the list to go to ODS... I remember him talking about Orange - but I guess it wasn't used there... So what are all the ODS vets claiming medical problems for, the items you listed???...

    Qualify my oink!!! We' won the dam_ thing years ago!!! Though it's been won by other states since...

    What's another reason to Barbecue at midnight in Texas - The Chair's frying somebody at 12:01 a.m.!!!

    I recently voted to Change the "Don't Mess with Texas" sig to the newly flavored "Go ahead and Mess with Texas - We'll Inject/Fry Your oink!!"

    Thanks Ferret - and dam_ good point... (I agree we're an okay state)I did not choose to live in TX(military brat), but with the way they run things - I'd rather be here than any of the 4 states listed, and quite a few other states... Long Live the Midnight Barbecues!!!
  4. Gizmo Composite: 1860

    Ura basically said about Agent Orange much better than I could.

    But what he missed (I think) is that the Gulf War veterans DO complain of suffering advanced problems following exposure to chemicals in the GUlf War. However the chemicals that did the damage werent the Iraq biochem warheads, but the battery of innoculations against those weapons that they were given by the US and British military which has led in many cases to progressive neurological deterioration.
    There are also claims that the depleted uranium ammo used in the tanks was radioactively dangerous.

    'Gulf War Syndrome' as it is know has been proven by endless independent medical enquiries to exist, but is rigourously denied by both us and britsh governments... handily avoiding the payment of many billions of dollars in damages payments to those affected.

    However I dont think theres any suggestion that this is a factor in the sniper. It appears as though he was looking to cash in on the 9/11 fear, maybe spread some terror in the name of Islam, but mainly just make himself some money.
  5. Ura Feline Lord of the Pit

    Perhaps this can help answer your question about your dad talking about orange. There is a test that the military does give and that could be what he was talking about.

    "I want (or I had) an "Agent Orange Test", sometimes thought to be given by the VA -- What is this?"
    There is no such thing as an Agent Orange Test. This is often confused with two things:

    1. The Agent Orange screening physical given at VA Medical Centers: This test is nothing more that a general physical which includes examination, X-rays and blood work. It does not detect Agent Orange exposure. This physical is useful only as any routine physical is useful in early detection of disease or health problems. The VA does keep these results in a registry.

    2. Dioxin analysis of the blood or fatty tissue: There are sophisticated tests which will measure dioxin levels in both blood and fatty tissues. (Dioxin is the unwanted byproduct in Agent Orange). These tests are research-oriented only, and have never been available on a large-scale or clinical basis. The VA does not perform these tests. Only a few laboratories in the world are able to do this testing, and it is usually quite expensive, around $1500-$2000 per test.

    So its basically a physical if this is what he was talking about.

    I believe I mentioned at the end of my post that the largest chances of exposure were from the detonation of Iraqi muntions bunkers. From this there have been several cases reported of exposure and some that are confirmed where the allied forces accidentally destroyed some of the chemical warheads(CW's) in the detonation process. This is where GWS is most likely coming from as there were no reports of CW's being used in combat. Also note that there are many other chemicals around battle fields that are not used in CW's. Things such as rocket propellant and jet fuel can cause many problems with unsafe exposure. Also as mentioned there are investigations into the radioactivity of the DU shells used in coalition tanks.
    The innoculations for many of the CW's that were feared of being used also have been proven to be damaging to soldiers who got them. To much medicine to fast is just another poison. To bad the governments aren't taking GWS seriously.
  6. Bob Idiot

    About the Texas thing, I believe that if an infinite amount of Texans with an infinite amount of guns and ammo, shooting at at infinite number of random objects, could eventually create the entire works of Shakespeare in Braille.
  7. Gizmo Composite: 1860

    About the Texas thing, I believe that if an infinite amount of Texans with an infinite amount of guns and ammo, shooting at at infinite number of random objects, would eventually hit George Bush.

    So lets get em started.
  8. train The Wildcard!!!...

    Waht's with the:

    There's no "IF"!!! We have an infinite amount of guns and ammo, but we waste a lot during those midnight barbecues.

    As for Bush, Tried that - W shot back... kind of made us realize we weren't the only ones with guns, and he was giving us free Coke and baseball tickets anyway!!!...

    As for the Shakespeare, we'd probably lean a little more towards King of the Hill scripts or Jeff Foxworthy anecdotes...:D
  9. Ferret CPA Founder, Slacker

    My wife is a native Texan. I know a lot about their sense of pride - and marksmanship - from her. Now, she doesn't own a gun (and doesn't plan to), but she can kill well eough. :)


    "...she prefers bludgeoning - it's more fun..."
  10. Spiderman CPA Man in Tights, Dopey Administrative Assistant

    Okay, so we've settled (I think) that neither side actively used chemical weapons against each other in the Gulf War.

    Again, can someone tell me exactly what circumstantial means? By tracking the guy down, it's my understanding there were a couple of phone calls regarding some incident in Montgomery. I can see that as circumstantial since they [authorities] don't know who they're from. They check it out and find an unsolved shooting with a fingerprint. They run the fingerprint through the database and find out where the owner last lived and associates (picking up the Muhammed guy). The associates I could see being circumstantial. Then they run through Muhammed's history and get his car and put out an APB. Correct?

    Concerning the name Muhammed: It's a common name for Arabic peoples, much like Smith or Jones is for English. I wouldn't take much stock in it; I agree with EricBess here.

    Very true.
  11. EricBess Active Member

    Basically, circumstantial evidence would simply mean that it doesn't tie that person directly to the incident, but it seems to imply that there might be some sort of involvement. At least, that's the way I understand it.

    As you said, the tips leading to Montgomery were circumstantial because they had nothing more than an anonomous phone call to link that robbery to the sniper incident.

    Basically, just like you said. All of those bits and pieces were circumstancial.

    All the same, they followed the lead and it eventually got them more substancial evidence. I'm sure there were a lot more circumstancial leads that they followed that got them nowhere. We just don't hear about most of these.

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