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 photo AgentOrange.jpg

Most warriors I knew in Vietnam were very brave
These young boys had to become men too quickly
Yet they were all dedicated to their missions

To survive each situation you had to have trust
You trusted the men on your right and your left
That when things got bad that they'd be strong

You knew you could trust them with your life
And they could trust you to cover them as well
It was a sacred trust that was never betrayed  

Then one day we heard this C-123 cargo plane
It was coming in flying very low over the base
Suddenly there was this misty cloud raining down

This is how we were introduced to the defoliant
This spray that they would call Agent Orange
A very sticky mist drifting down over our base

They said it was an herbicide used to kill weeds
It was suppose to kill off all the tall grasses
That the VC had been using to hide from our view

Then late at night they would sneak in close to us
They'd pound our bases with artillery and mortars
Hidden from view until we saw their muzzle flashes

This spray did indeed kill the tall elephant grass
It would also deprive the VC of their hiding places
The number of attacks on our base had dropped too

But there was a heavy price we'd pay because of it
It seems this Agent Orange killed more than plants
In the following decades it has been killing us too

We learned later it was banned from use in the USA
As railroad workers and forest workers became ill
They had gotten cancers and other illnesses as well

It had caused nerve damage and many other issues too
So it was blacklisted from use in the United States
Someone convinced the military to use it in Vietnam

They knew what would happen to those who were exposed
How our warriors would be incapacitated later in life
From this deadly chemical but they still used it anyway

It took us too many years fighting with the government
For they were defending the chemical companies from us
We had seeked answers why we were all becoming so sick

We were denied treatment from the VA or any compensation
Many veterans became unable to work any longer or had died
Only those hidden medical reports from the past helped us

Terry Sasek - Alwaysawarrior - all rights reserved.


It seems years after we started asking the government for answers
as to why we were all becoming ill from our heavy exposure during
our service in Vietnam, did these hidden medical reports from the
past surface when someone leaked them to the veterans showing the
medical effects from studies done on those who had heavy exposure
to these chemicals used by those former railroad workers and those
U.S. Forest Service employees who worked with these same chemicals
during the 1940's and 1950's as they had sprayed them along all the
railroad tracks and all the fire access roads to kill the weeds off
that quickly grew along and sometimes blocked off all the railway
tracks and the fire access roads in the forests that were used by
the fire crews in the forest get to the wild forest fires. It was then
ordered  that the test results be locked up and been hidden away so
no one could view them. It was only because someone at the chemical
company decided to leak these medical reports and their findings to
the veterans were we then able to sue all those chemical companies
who had made these chemicals in court and even though we had won our
case so we could get treatment and compensation, it was the lawyers
who ended up with the bulk of all the money awarded to the veterans.
Only in these past several years has the government finally admitted
that they had indeed known all along about the terrible side effects
of the chemicals used and the VA has started treating our illnesses
and granting those of us who had become 100% totally and permanently
disabled from our own exposure to these chemicals the compensation
that they had promised they would pay us. I guess they though there
was a good chance that we would be killed in the war and wouldn't be
around long enough for the side effects from our heavy exposure to
the chemicals to be able to manifest themselves in any of us anyway,
so they figured why not use these chemicals over in Vietnam anyway.

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