Operation Ranch Hand

Operation Ranch Hand was a U.S. military operation during the Vietnam War, lasting from 1962 until 1971. Largely inspired by the British use of 2,4,5-T and 2,4-D (Agent Orange) during the Malayan Emergency in the 1950s, it was part of the overall herbicidal warfare program during the war called "Operation Trail Dust". Ranch Hand involved spraying an estimated 20 million U.S. gallons (76,000 m3) of defoliants and herbicides[1] over rural areas of South Vietnam in an attempt to deprive the Viet Cong of food and vegetation cover. Areas of Laos and Cambodia were also sprayed to a lesser extent. Nearly 20,000 sorties were flown between 1961 and 1971.[2]

The "Ranch Handers" motto was "Only you can prevent a forest"[1] – a take on the popular U.S. Forest Service poster slogan of Smokey Bear. During the ten years of spraying, over 5 million acres (20,000 km2) of forest and 500,000 acres (2,000 km2) of crops were heavily damaged or destroyed. Around 20% of the forests of South Vietnam were sprayed at least once.[3]

The herbicides were sprayed by the U.S. Air Force flying C-123s using the call sign "Hades". The planes were fitted with specially developed spray tanks with a capacity of 1,000 U.S. gallons (4 m3) of herbicides. A plane sprayed a swath of land that was 80 meters wide and 16 km ≈10 miles long in about 4½ minutes, at a rate of about 3 U.S. gallons per acre (3 m3/km2).[4] Sorties usually consisted of three to five aircraft flying side by side. 95% of the herbicides and defoliants used in the war were sprayed by the U.S. Air Force as part of Operation Ranch Hand. The remaining 5% were sprayed by the U.S. Chemical Corps, other military branches, and the Republic of Vietnam using hand sprayers, spray trucks, helicopters and boats, primarily around U.S. military installations.[5]

'Ranch Hand' run
Four-plane defoliant run, part of Operation Ranch Hand
Vas006661
"Smokey Bear" parody

Defoliants

GVN Herbicide
Map of herbicide usage during the Vietnam war.

The herbicides used were sprayed at up to 50 times the concentration than for normal agricultural use. The most common herbicide used was Herbicide Orange, more commonly referred to as Agent Orange: a fifty-fifty mixture of two herbicides 2,4-D (2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid) and 2,4,5-T (2,4,5-trichlorophenoxyacetic acid) manufactured for the U.S. Department of Defense primarily by Monsanto Corporation and Dow Chemical. The other most common color-coded Ranch Hand herbicides were Agent Blue (cacodylic acid) that was primarily used against food crops, and Agent White which was often used when Agent Orange was not available.

The Agents used—known as the Rainbow Herbicides—their active ingredients, and years used were as follows:[6]

  • Agent Green: 100% n-butyl ester 2,4,5-T, used prior to 1966[7]
  • Agent Pink: 100% 2,4,5-T (60% n-butyl ester 2,4,5-T, and 40% iso-butyl ester of 2,4,5-T) used prior to 1966[7]
  • Agent Purple: 50% 2,4,5-T (30% n-butyl ester of 2,4,5-T, and 20% iso-butyl ester of 2,4,5-T) and 50% n-butyl ester of 2,4-D used 1961–65
  • Agent Blue (Phytar 560G): 65.6% organic Arsenicical (cacodylic acid (Ansar 138) and its sodium salt sodium cacodylate)[7] used from 1962–71 in powder and water solution[8]
  • Agent White (Tordon 101): 21.2% (acid weight basis) triisopropanolamine salts of 2,4-D and 5.7% picloram used 1966–71[7][8]
  • Agent Orange or Herbicide Orange, (HO): 50% n-butyl ester 2,4-D and 50% n-butyl ester 2,4,5-T used 1965–70
  • Agent Orange II:50% n-butyl ester 2,4-D and 50% isooctyl ester 2,4,5-T used after 1968.[9][10]
  • Agent Orange III: 66.6% n-butyl 2,4-D and 33.3% n-butyl ester 2,4,5-T.[11]
  • Enhanced Agent Orange, Orange Plus, or Super Orange (SO), or DOW Herbicide M-3393: standardized Agent Orange mixture of 2,4-D and 2,4,5-T combined with an oil-based mixture of picloram, a proprietary Dow Chemical product called Tordon 101, an ingredient of Agent White.[12][13]

The herbicides were procured by the U.S. military from Dow Chemical Company (all but Blue), Monsanto (Orange, Purple and Pink), Hercules Inc. (Orange and Purple), Thompson-Hayward Chemical Company (Orange and Pink), Diamond Alkali/Shamrock Company (Orange, Blue, Purple and Pink), United States Rubber Company (Orange), Thompson Chemicals Corporation (Orange and Pink), Agrisect Company (Orange and Purple), Hoffman-Taft Inc. (Orange), and the Ansul Chemical Company (Blue).[7] In April 1967, the entire American domestic production of 2,4,5-T was confiscated by the military; foreign sources were also tapped into, including the Imperial Chemical Industries (ICI).[14]

65% of the herbicides used contained 2,4,5-trichlorophenoxyacetic acid that was contaminated with 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzodioxin,[5] a "known human carcinogen...by several different routes of exposure, including oral, dermal, and intraperitoneal".[15] About 12 million U.S. gallons (45,000 m3) of dioxin-contaminated herbicides were sprayed over Southeast Asia during American combat operations.[16]

In 2005, a New Zealand government minister was quoted and widely reported as saying that Agent Orange chemicals had been supplied from New Zealand to the United States military during the conflict. Shortly after, the same minister claimed to have been mis-quoted, although this point was less widely reported. From 1962 to 1987, 2,4,5T herbicide had been manufactured at an Ivon Watkins-Dow plant in New Plymouth.[17][18][19][20]

Operations

For most of the war, Operation Ranch Hand was based at Bien Hoa Air Base (1966–1970), for operations in the Mekong Delta region where U.S. Navy patrol boats were vulnerable to attack from areas of undergrowth along the water's edge. Storage, mixing, loading, and washing areas and a parking ramp were located just off the base's inside taxiway between the Hot Cargo Ramp and the control tower. For operations along the central coast and the Ho Chi Minh trail regions, Ranch Hand operated out of Da Nang Air Base (1964–71). Other bases of operation included Phù Cát Air Base (1968–1970), Tan Son Nhut Air Base (1962–66), Nha Trang Air Base (1968–69), Phan Rang Air Base (1970–72), and Tuy Hoa Air Base (1971–72).[21] Other bases were also used as temporary staging areas for Ranch Hand. The Da Nang, Bien Hoa and Phu Cat Air bases are still heavily contaminated with dioxin from the herbicides, and have been placed on a priority list for containment and clean-up by the Vietnamese government.

The first aerial spraying of herbicides was a test run conducted on 10 August 1961 in a village north of Đắk Tô against foliage.[22]:11 Testing continued over the next year and even though there was doubt in the State Department, the Pentagon and the White House as to the efficacy of the herbicides, Operation Ranch Hand began in early 1962. Individual spray runs had to be approved by President John F. Kennedy until November 1962, when Kennedy gave the authority to approve most spray runs to the Military Assistance Command, Vietnam and the U.S. Ambassador to South Vietnam. Ranch Hand was given final approval to spray targets in eastern Laos in December 1965.[22]:45–68

The issue of whether or not to allow crop destruction was under great debate due to its potential of violating the Geneva Protocol.[23] However, American officials pointed out that the British had previously used 2,4,5-T and 2,4-D (virtually identical to America's use in Vietnam) on a large scale throughout the Malayan Emergency in the 1950s in order to destroy bushes, crops, and trees in effort to deny communist insurgents the cover they needed to ambush passing convoys.[24] Indeed, Secretary of State Dean Rusk told President Kennedy on November 24, 1961, that "[t]he use of defoliant does not violate any rule of international law concerning the conduct of chemical warfare and is an accepted tactic of war. Precedent has been established by the British during the emergency in Malaya in their use of aircraft for destroying crops by chemical spraying."[25] The president of South Vietnam, Ngo Dinh Diem began to push the U.S. Military Advisory Group in Vietnam and the White House to begin crop destruction in September 1961, but it was not until October 1962 when the White House gave approval for limited testing of Agent Blue against crops in an area believed to be controlled by the Viet Cong.[26] Soon after, crop destruction became an integral part of the Ranch Hand program.

Targets for the spray runs were carefully selected to satisfy the strategic and psychological operations goals of the U.S. and South Vietnamese military. Spray runs were surveyed to pinpoint the target area and then placed on a priority list. Due to the low altitude (ideally 150 feet (46 m)) required for spraying, the C-123s were escorted by fighter aircraft or helicopter gunship that would strafe or bomb the target area in order to draw out any ground fire if the area was believed to be 'hot'. Spray runs were planned to enable as straight a run as possible to limit the amount of time the planes flew at low altitude. Data on the spray runs, their targets, the herbicide used and amount used, weather conditions and other details were recorded and later put into a database called the Herbicide Reporting System (HERBS) tapes.

The effectiveness of the spraying was influenced by many factors including weather and terrain. Spray runs occurred during the early morning hours before temperatures rose above 85 degrees and the winds picked up. Mangroves in the Delta region required only one spraying and did not survive once defoliated, whereas dense forests in the uplands required two or more spray runs. Within two to three weeks of spraying, the leaves would drop from the trees, which would remain bare until the next rainy season. In order to defoliate the lower stories of forest cover, one or more follow-up spray runs were needed. About 10 percent of the trees sprayed died from a single spray run. Multiple spraying resulted in increased mortality for the trees, as did following up the herbicide missions with napalm or bombing strikes.[27]

Scientific community reaction

The use of herbicides in the Vietnam War was controversial from the beginning, particularly for crop destruction. The scientific community began to protest the use of herbicides in Vietnam as early as 1964, when the Federation of American Scientists objected to the use of defoliants.[28] The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) issued a resolution in 1966 calling for a field investigation of the herbicide program in Vietnam.[28] In 1967, seventeen Nobel laureates and 5,000 other scientists signed a petition asking for the immediate end to the use of herbicides in Vietnam.[28] Press coverage of the controversial use of herbicides in Vietnam increased in the late 1960s.

In 1970, AAAS sent a team of scientists—the Herbicide Assessment Commission (HAC) consisting of Matthew Meselson, Arthur Westing, John Constable, and Robert Cook—to conduct field tests of the ecological impacts of the herbicide program in Vietnam.[28] A 1969 report authored by K. Diane Courtney and others found that 2,4,5-T could cause birth defects and stillbirths in mice. This and follow-up studies led the U.S. government to restrict the use of 2,4,5-T in the U.S. in April 1970.[28] The Department of Defense followed suit by 'temporarily' suspending the use of Agent Orange in Vietnam, though they continued to rely on Agent White for defoliation until supplies ran out and the last defoliation spray run took place on 9 May 1970. Sporadic crop destruction sorties using Agent Blue and Agent White continued throughout 1970 until the final Ranch Hand run was flown on 7 January 1971.[28]

Human impact

The use of herbicides as a defoliant has left tangible, long-term impacts upon the Vietnamese people that live in Vietnam,[29][30] as well as those who fled in the mass exodus from 1978 to the early 1990s. Hindsight corrective studies indicate that previous estimates of Agent Orange exposure were biased by government intervention and under-guessing, such that current estimates for dioxin release are almost double those previously predicted.[31] Census data indicates that the United States military directly sprayed upon millions of Vietnamese during strategic Agent Orange use.[31] The effects of Agent Orange on the Vietnamese range from a variety of health effects, ecological effects, and sociopolitical effects. For instance, it led to 3 million Vietnamese people suffering health problems, one million birth defects caused directly by exposure to Agent Orange, and 24% of the area of Vietnam being defoliated. Additionally, the toll on the United States military handling the above mentioned chemicals, as well as those who happened to be in and around the many targeted drop zone areas throughout the Viet Nam War, adds 2.8 million personnel and their offspring exposed to, and suffering the affects of, the various chemicals used.[32]

See also

References

  1. ^ a b Lewis, James G. (2006). "Smokey Bear in Vietnam". Environmental History. 11 (3): 598–603. doi:10.1093/envhis/11.3.598. Retrieved 30 April 2012.
  2. ^ Buckingham, William. Chapter IV.
  3. ^ Vo Quy, "Statement to the House Subcommittee on Asia, the Pacific and Global Environment," 4 June 2009.
  4. ^ Buckingham, William A., Jr. (1982). Operation Ranch Hand: The Air Force and Herbicides in Southeast Asia 1961-1971 (PDF). Washington, DC: Office of Air Force History. p. 132. ISBN 978-0-87000-466-7. Retrieved 1 February 2014.
  5. ^ a b Stellman, Jeanne et al. "The extent and patterns of usage of Agent Orange and other herbicides in Vietnam." Nature. Vol 422. pg 681
  6. ^ Stellman, Jeanne et al. Page 682
  7. ^ a b c d e Young, Alvin L. The History, Use, Disposition and Environmental Fate of Agent Orange. Springer, 2009. pg. 44.
  8. ^ a b Committee to Review the Health Effects in Vietnam Veterans of Exposure to Herbicides; Institute of Medicine (1994). Veterans and Agent Orange: Health Effects of Herbicides Used in Vietnam. National Academies Press. pp. 89–90. ISBN 978-0-309-55619-4.
  9. ^ Stephen Bull (2004). Encyclopedia of Military Technology and Innovation. Greenwood Publishing Group. p. 6. ISBN 978-1-57356-557-8.
  10. ^ Daniel Vallero (2011). Biomedical Ethics for Engineers: Ethics and Decision Making in Biomedical and Biosystem Engineering. Academic Press. p. 73. ISBN 978-0-08-047610-0.
  11. ^ U.S. Army Corps of Engineers St. Louis District (4 April 2012). Archives Search Report Findings for Field Testing of 2,4,5-T and Other Herbicides (PDF) (Report). p. 116. Retrieved 8 August 2013.CS1 maint: Uses authors parameter (link)
  12. ^ Corcoran, Charles A. (December 1968). "Operational Evaluation of Super-Orange (U)- unclassified". Military Assistance Command Vietnam (MAC-V) to Joint Chief of Staff (JCS) message for CINCPAC, USARPAC Ofc Science Adviser. via National Security Archives at George Washington University. Missing or empty |url= (help)
  13. ^ DGSC-PI Memorandum for the record: Herbicides reformulation thereof (Operation Guns and Butter meeting) (Report). DOW Chemical Company. 9 September 1966. |access-date= requires |url= (help)
  14. ^ Der Spiegel, 32/1991: Der Tod aus Ingelheim by Cordt Schnibben (accessed 2013-07-30)
  15. ^ Report on Carcinogens, Twelfth Edition (2011) Archived 17 February 2013 at the Wayback Machine (accessed 2013-07-30)
  16. ^ Pellow, David N. Resisting Global Toxics: Transnational Movements for Environmental Justice, (Google Books), MIT Press, 2007, p. 159, (ISBN 026216244X).
  17. ^ Taylor, Kevin (11 January 2005). "Government probes claims NZ exported Agent Orange". The New Zealand Herald. Archived from the original on 16 July 2012. Retrieved 11 January 2005.
  18. ^ "NZ admits supplying Agent Orange during war". Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 9 January 2005.
  19. ^ "MP denies evidence of Agent Orange exports". New Zealand Herald. 12 January 2005. Retrieved 12 January 2005.
  20. ^ "THE POISONING OF NEW ZEALAND". Safe 2 Use. Retrieved 17 November 2005.
  21. ^ Young. Alvin L. Pg 62.
  22. ^ a b Buckingham Jr., William A. (1982). Operation Ranch Hand: The Air Force and Herbicides in Southeast Asia 1961–1971 (PDF). Office of Air Force History.
  23. ^ "Protocol for the Prohibition of the Use in War of Asphyxiating, Poisonous or Other Gases and of Bacteriological Methods of Warfare (Geneva Protocol)". U.S. Department of State. 25 September 2002. Retrieved 24 August 2013.
  24. ^ Bruce Cumings (1998). The Global Politics of Pesticides: Forging Consensus from Conflicting Interests. Earthscan. p. 61.
  25. ^ "Foreign Relations of the United States, 1961–1963 Volume I, Vietnam, 1961, Document 275". History.state.gov. Retrieved 24 February 2014.
  26. ^ Buckingham, William. Chapter V.
  27. ^ Westing, Arthur. Ecological Effects of Military Defoliation on the Forests of South Vietnam. BioScience Vol 21, No 17. (1 September. 1971), pp 893–898.
  28. ^ a b c d e f Institute of Medicine (US) Committee to Review the Health Effects in Vietnam Veterans of Exposure to Herbicides (1994). "History of the Controversy Over the Use of Herbicides". Veterans and Agent Orange: Health Effects of Herbicides Used in Vietnam. Retrieved 27 March 2016.
  29. ^ https://www.nytimes.com/2014/05/12/us/agent-oranges-long-legacy-for-vietnam-and-veterans.html
  30. ^ http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/asia-pacific/4494347.stm
  31. ^ a b Stellman, Jeanne M.; Stellman, Steven D.; Christian, Richard; Weber, Tracy; Tomasallo, Carrie (April 2003). "The Extent and Patterns of Usage of Agent Orange and Other Herbicides in Vietnam". Nature. 422 (6933): 681–687. doi:10.1038/nature01537. PMID 12700752.
  32. ^ Gustafson, Mai L. (1978). War and Shadows: The Haunting of Vietnam. Ithaca and London: Cornell University Press. p. 125.

External links

12th Airborne Command and Control Squadron

The 12th Airborne Command and Control Squadron is a United States Air Force flying unit, assigned to the 461st Air Control Wing, stationed at Robins Air Force Base, Georgia. The squadron flies the E-8C Joint STARS, providing airborne battle management, command and control, surveillance, and target acquisition.

Agent Blue

Agent Blue, (CH3)2AsOOH, obtained by the oxidation of cacodyl, and having the properties of an exceedingly stable acid; is one of the "rainbow herbicides" that is known for its use by the United States during the Vietnam War. Largely inspired by the British use of herbicides and defoliants during the Malayan Emergency, killing rice was a military strategy from the very start of US military involvement in Vietnam. At first, US soldiers attempted to blow up rice paddies and rice stocks, using mortars and hand grenades. But grains of rice were far more durable than they understood, and were not easily destroyed. Every grain that survived was a seed, to be collected and planted again.

In a report to the International War Crimes Tribunal (founded by Bertrand Russell) at the end of 1967, it was stated that: "The soldiers discovered that rice is one of the most maddeningly difficult substances to destroy; using thermite metal grenades it is almost impossible to make it burn and, even if one succeeds in scattering the rice, this does not stop it being harvested by patient men. So they went to a bigger and better option that will actually kill off the paddies. The purpose of Agent Blue was narrow-leaf plants and trees (grass, rice, bamboo, banana, etc.) "Operation Ranch Hand", was military code for spraying of herbicides from U.S. Air Force aircraft in Southeast Asia from 1962 through 1971. The widespread use of herbicides in Southeast Asia during the Vietnam War was a unique military operation in that it was meant to kill the plants that provided cover. The continued use of Agent Blue, one of the "Rainbow Herbicides", by the United States was primarily meant as an operation to take away the enemy's advantage on the terrain as well as deprive them of the resources they gained from the plant life.

Between 1962 and 1971, the US used an estimated 20 million gallons of herbicides as chemical weapons for "defoliation and crop destruction" which fell mostly on the forest of South Vietnam, but was eventually used in Laos as well to kill crops in order to deprive the communist Viet Cong and North Vietnamese troops of food. It was sprayed on rice paddies and other crops in an attempt to deprive the Viet Cong of the valuable crops the plants provided. Unable to control the Viet Cong's access to food supplies or their grassroots village support, the US military response was simple: If you can't control it, kill it. Agent Blue is a mixture of two arsenic-containing compounds: sodium cacodylate and cacodylic acid. Agent Blue is chemically unrelated to the more infamous Agent Orange and other herbicides used during the war.

Agent Blue affects plants by causing them to dry out. As rice is highly dependent on water to live, using Agent Blue on these paddies can destroy an entire field and leave it unsuitable for further planting. This is why Agent Blue was also used where food was not a factor, but foliage was. The Vietcong had an advantage while fighting in Vietnam because they were used to the abundance of plant life on the battlefield. The US found themselves at a disadvantage and based on the precedent set by the British in Malaya, decided that the best retaliation would be to take the Vietcong's advantage away from them by removing their cover. Along roads, canals, railroads, and other transportation networks, Ranch Hand cleared several hundred yards using the herbicides to make ambushes more difficult for their enemies. In Laos, the herbicide removed the jungle canopy from the roads and trails used for infiltrating men and supplies, making them more vulnerable to attack from the air.

Approximately 19.6 million gallons of Agent Blue were used in Vietnam during the war, destroying 500,000 acres (2,000 km2) of crops. From 1965 on the Ansul Chemical Company delivered the herbicide Phytar 560 with the 26.4% sodium cacodylate and 4.7% cacodylic acid in water.Today, large quantities of the chemical named Agent Blue are still used on lawns and crops throughout the USA. Taken from ZNet Ecology: It has been over twelve years since the last herbicide mission that was done. But there is still big controversy going around about the past missions that were sent out.

Arsenical herbicides containing cacodylic acid as an active ingredient are still used today as weed-killers. In the US they are used extensively, from golf courses to backyards. They are also sprayed on cotton fields, drying out the cotton plants before harvesting. So common -- and so profitable -- is the original commercial form of Agent Blue that it was among 10 toxic insecticides, fungicides and herbicides partially deregulated by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in February 2004. Specific limits on toxic residues in meat, milk, poultry, and eggs were removed.

Agent Green

Agent Green is the code name for a powerful herbicide and defoliant used by the U.S. military in its herbicidal warfare program during the Vietnam War. The name comes from the green stripe painted on the barrels to identify the contents. Largely inspired by the British use of herbicides and defoliants during the Malayan Emergency, it was one of the so-called "Rainbow Herbicides". Agent Green was only used between 1962 and 1964, during the early "testing" stages of the spraying program.

Agent Green was mixed with Agent Pink and used for crop destruction. A total of 20,000 gallons of Agent Green were procured.Agent Green's only active ingredient was 2,4,5-trichlorophenoxyacetic acid (2,4,5-T), one of the common phenoxy herbicides of the era. Even prior to Operation Ranch Hand (1962-1971) it was known that a dioxin, 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-para-dioxin (TCDD), is produced as a side product of the manufacture of 2,4,5-T, and was thus present in any of the herbicides that used it. Because Agent Green's only active ingredient was 2,4,5-T, along with the similar Agent Pink, and earlier-produced batches of 2,4,5-T having higher TCDD-levels, it contained many times the average level of dioxin found in Agent Orange.

During much of the fighting in the Vietnam War, chemical agents were used by the United States to defoliate the landscape. Although many different chemical agents were used, the most well known today is "Agent Orange," one of the "Rainbow Herbicides"

Agent Orange

Agent Orange is a herbicide and defoliant chemical, one of the "tactical use" Rainbow Herbicides. It is widely known for its use by the U.S. military as part of its herbicidal warfare program, Operation Ranch Hand, during the Vietnam War from 1961 to 1971. It is a mixture of equal parts of two herbicides, 2,4,5-T and 2,4-D. In addition to its damaging environmental effects, traces of dioxin (mainly TCDD, the most toxic of its type) found in the mixture have caused major health problems for many individuals who were exposed.

Up to four million people in Vietnam were exposed to the defoliant. The government of Vietnam says as many as 3 million people have suffered illnesses because of Agent Orange. The Red Cross of Vietnam estimates that up to 1 million people are disabled or have health problems as a result of Agent Orange contamination. The United States government has challenged these figures as being unreliable. The chemical is capable of damaging genes, resulting in deformities among the offspring of exposed victims. The U.S. government has documented higher cases of leukemia, Hodgkin's lymphoma, and various kinds of cancer in exposed veterans. Agent Orange also caused enormous environmental damage in Vietnam. Over 3,100,000 hectares (31,000 km2 or 11,969 mi2) of forest were defoliated. Defoliants eroded tree cover and seedling forest stock, making reforestation difficult in numerous areas. Animal species diversity sharply reduced in contrast with unsprayed areas.The aftermath of the use of Agent Orange in Vietnam resulted in massive legal consequences. The United Nations ratified United Nations General Assembly Resolution 31/72 and the Environmental Modification Convention. Lawsuits filed on behalf of both US and Vietnamese veterans sought compensation for damages.

Agent Orange was to a lesser extent used outside Vietnam. It was first used by British Armed Forces in Malaysia during the Malayan Emergency. It was further used in neighbouring Laos and Cambodia was also sprayed with Agent Orange during the Vietnam War because forests on the border with Vietnam were used by the Viet Cong. Some countries, such as Canada, saw testing, while other countries, such as Brazil, used the herbicide to clear out sections of land for agriculture.

Agent Orange Act of 1991

Agent Orange Act of 1991 establishes provisions for the National Academy of Sciences to analyze and summarize scientific evidence regarding presumptive military service exposure to defoliants, dioxins and herbicides, better known as Agent Orange, during the Vietnam War era. The United States Statute endorses an observation of human medical conditions directly related to non-Hodgkin lymphoma, soft-tissue sarcoma, chloracne, and consistent acneform diseases for military personnel who served in the overseas Vietnamese region. The Act of Congress ratifies a medical research compilation of voluntarily contributed blood and tissue samples provided by Vietnam-era veterans serving in Southeast Asia between 1961 and 1975.

The H.R. 556 legislation was passed by the 102nd United States Congressional session and enacted into law by the 41st President of the United States George H.W. Bush on February 6, 1991.

Agent Pink

Agent Pink is the code name for a powerful herbicide and defoliant used by the U.S. military in its herbicidal warfare program during the Vietnam War. The name comes from the pink stripe painted on the barrels to identify the contents. Largely inspired by the British use of herbicides and defoliants during the Malayan Emergency, it was one of the rainbow herbicides that included the more infamous Agent Orange. Agent Pink was only used during the early "testing" stages of the spraying program before 1964.

Agent Pink's only active ingredient was 2,4,5-trichlorophenoxyacetic acid (2,4,5-T), one of the common phenoxy herbicides of the era. Agent Pink contained about 60%–40% of this active substance. Even prior to Operation Ranch Hand (1962–1971) it was known that a dioxin, 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-para-dioxin (TCDD), is produced as a byproduct of the manufacture of 2,4,5-T, and was present in any of the herbicides that used it, but to greater proportion in the earlier Agents, such as Pink.A 2003 Nature paper by Stellman et al., which re-apprised the average TCDD content of Agent Orange from the 3 ppm that USAF had reported to a level of 13 ppm, also estimated that Agent Pink may have had 65.5 ppm of TCDD on average. The comparatively smaller amounts of Pink and Purple—spraying of 50,312 l of Pink is documented, but an additional 413,852 l appear on procurement records—probably deposited a large percentage of the total dioxin.

Agent Purple

Agent Purple is the code name for a powerful herbicide and defoliant used by the U.S. military in their herbicidal warfare program during the Vietnam War. The name comes from the purple stripe painted on the barrels to identify the contents. Largely inspired by the British use of herbicides and defoliants during the Malayan Emergency, it was one of the so-called "Rainbow Herbicides" that included the more infamous Agent Orange. Agent Purple and Orange were also used to clear brush in Canada.

Agent Purple was chemically similar to the better-known Agent Orange, both of them were consisting of a mixture of the herbicides 2,4-D and 2,4,5-T and in both cases the 2,4-D and 2,4,5-T constituted equal shares of the Agent. The difference was in the form of 2,4,5-T. While all the 2,4,5-T in Agent Orange was as the n-butyl ester, the 2,4,5-T in Agent Purple was itself mixture of n-butyl and isobutyl ester forms (60%:40% respectively). The Agent Purple had then the following composition: 50% n-butyl ester 2,4-D, 30% n-butyl ester 2,4,5-T, and 20% isobutyl ester 2,4,5-T.Even prior to Operation Ranch Hand (1962-1971) it was known that 2,4,5-T, and thus Agents Purple, Pink, Green and Orange, were contaminated with tetrachlorodibenzodioxin (TCDD), an extremely toxic and persistent by-product formed during synthesis. Dioxin-levels varied considerably from batch to batch, and even within the same batch; generally, agents produced earlier, such as Purple and Pink suffered from higher levels of contamination. A 2003 Nature paper by Stellman et al., which re-apprised the average TCDD content of Agent Orange from the 3 ppm that USAF had reported to a level of 13 ppm, also estimated that Agent Purple may have had 32.8 ppm of TCDD on average. A sample of Agent Purple archived at Eglin Air Force Base had an even higher content of 45 ppm TCDD.Agent Purple was used only in the earliest stages of the spraying program, between 1962 and 1965 as well as in earlier tests conducted by the US military outside of Vietnam. About 500,000 gallons were sprayed in Vietnam total. (~1.9 million liters). When the need to clear brush around CFB Gagetown in Canada arose, quantities of Agent Purple and Agent Orange were also sprayed there in a testing program during 1966 and 1967.

August 10

August 10 is the 222nd day of the year (223rd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. 143 days remain until the end of the year.

The term 'the 10th of August' is widely used by historians as a shorthand for the Storming of the Tuileries Palace on the 10th of August, 1792, the effective end of the French monarchy until it was restored in 1814.

Effects of Agent Orange on the Vietnamese people

Agent Orange is a chemical weapon most notably used by the U.S. Military during the Vietnam War, classified as defoliant. Its primary purpose was strategic deforestation, destroying the forest cover and food resources necessary for the implementation and sustainability of the North Vietnamese style of guerilla warfare. The U.S. Agent Orange usage reached an apex during Operation Ranch Hand, in which the material (with its extremely toxic impurity, dioxin) was sprayed over 4.5 million acres of land in Vietnam from 1961 to 1971.The use of Agent Orange as a chemical weapon has left tangible, long-term impacts upon the Vietnamese people that live in Vietnam as well as those who fled in the mass exodus from 1978 to the early 1990s. Hindsight corrective studies indicate that previous estimates of Agent Orange exposure were biased by government intervention and under-guessing, such that current estimates for dioxin release are almost double those previously predicted. Census data indicates that the United States military directly sprayed upon millions of Vietnamese during strategic Agent Orange use. The effects of Agent Orange on the Vietnamese range from a variety of health effects, ecological effects, and sociopolitical effects.

Fairchild C-123 Provider

The Fairchild C-123 Provider is an American military transport aircraft designed by Chase Aircraft and then built by Fairchild Aircraft for the U.S. Air Force. In addition to its USAF service, which included later service with the Air Force Reserve and the Air National Guard, it also went on to serve most notably with the U.S. Coast Guard and various air forces in Southeast Asia. During the War in Vietnam, the C-123 was used to deliver supplies, to evacuate the wounded, and also used to spray Agent Orange.

Herbicidal warfare

Herbicidal warfare is the use of substances primarily designed to destroy the plant-based ecosystem of an area. Although herbicidal warfare use chemical substances, its main purpose is to disrupt agricultural food production and/or to destroy plants which provide cover or concealment to the enemy, not to asphyxiate or poison humans and/or destroy human-made structures. Herbicidal warfare has been forbidden by the Environmental Modification Convention since 1978, which bans "any technique for changing the composition or structure of the Earth's biota".

Mobay

Mobay Chemical Corporation, based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, was a joint venture of Monsanto Company and Bayer to market polyurethanes in the United States. Founded in 1954, Bayer bought out Monsanto's shares in the company in the 1970s.

Mobay, along with Miles Laboratories, was a member of Bayer's menagerie of companies in the US while Bayer did not own the US rights to its name.

After a first failed attempt of appearing under the Bayer USA Inc. name in the US, Bayer consolidated its US operations under the Miles name in 1992.

Operation Hades

Operation Hades may refer to:

Operation Hades, which resulted in the Plutonium affair in Germany

Operation Hades, part of Operation Ranch Hand during the Vietnam war

Operation Hades, an expansion pack of Fantasy Flight game Dust Tactics

Operation Pacer HO

Operation Pacer HO was a 1977 operation of the U.S. Air Force that incinerated the Agent Orange stored at Johnston Atoll aboard the Dutch-owned ship M/T Vulcanus in 1977. "HO" was an abbreviation of Herbicide Orange (HO). Operation Pacer IVY (InVentorY) was an associated the United States Department of Defense mission to inventory, collect, consolidate, re-drum, remove from the Southeast Asian theater, and store Agent Orange.

Rainbow Herbicides

The Rainbow Herbicides are a group of "tactical use" chemicals used by the United States military in Southeast Asia during the Vietnam War. Success with Project AGILE field tests with herbicides in South Vietnam in 1961 and inspiration by the British use of herbicides and defoliants during the Malayan Emergency in the 1950s led to the formal herbicidal program Trail Dust (see Operation Ranch Hand). Herbicidal warfare is the use of substances primarily designed to destroy the plant-based ecosystem of an agricultural food production and/or to destroy foliage which provides the enemy cover.

Ranch hand (disambiguation)

A Ranch Hand is a manual laborer on a ranch, such as a cowboy.

Ranch Hand may also refer to:

Operation Ranch Hand, a US Air Force operation during the Vietnam war

Ranch Hand Truck Accessories, an American manufacturer of heavy duty truck accessories

Rossi Ranch Hand, a Mare's Leg-style handgun

Takhli Royal Thai Air Force Base

Takhli Royal Thai Air Force Base (IATA: TKH, ICAO: VTPI) is a Royal Thai Air Force (RTAF) facility in central Thailand, approximately 144 miles (240 km) northwest of Bangkok in Takhli District, Nakhon Sawan Province.

Tan Son Nhut Air Base

Tan Son Nhut Air Base (Vietnamese: Căn cứ không quân Tân Sơn Nhứt) (1955–1975) was a Republic of Vietnam Air Force (RVNAF) facility. It was located near the city of Saigon in southern Vietnam. The United States used it as a major base during the Vietnam War (1959–1975), stationing Army, Air Force, Navy, and Marine units there. Following the Fall of Saigon, it was taken over as a Vietnam People's Air Force (VPAF) facility and remains in use today.

Tan Son Nhat International Airport, (IATA: SGN, ICAO: VVTS) has been a major Vietnamese civil airport since the 1920s.

United States herbicidal warfare research

Herbicidal warfare research by the U.S. military began during the Second World War with additional research during the Korean War. Interest among military strategists waned before a budgetary increase allowed further research during the early Vietnam War. The U.S. research culminated in the U.S. military defoliation program during the Vietnam war known as Operation Ranch Hand.

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