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US biological & chemical tests during Cold War

 
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ramonmercadoOffline
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PostPosted: 12-01-2014 14:49    Post subject: US biological & chemical tests during Cold War Reply with quote

I think we'll be hearing more about this.

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US tested biological weapons in Japan’s Okinawa in the 60s – report
Published time: January 12, 2014 11:50

Reuters/Toru Hanai

The American army conducted experiments with biological weapons aimed at destroying rice crops on the Japanese island of Okinawa in the 60s, Kyodo news agency reports. The alleged target of the tests was the China and Southeast Asia region.

Citing classified US documents, Japanese news agency Kyodo said the US military carried out experiments on their sovereign territory between 1961 and 1962. At this time Japan’s southern island of Okinawa was still under post-WWII, US jurisdiction. The US did similar tests in Taiwan and the American mainland, notes Kyodo.

The American army experimented with rice blast fungus – a plant pathogen – which infects rice crops with disastrous effects. The pathogen latches onto the rice plant as a spore and produces lesions and spots all over the rice plant and then reproduces.

A single lesion can generate a thousand spores in one night alone, while an entire cycle – lasting about a week – can have a devastating effect on rice crops.

Kyodo reports that tests were conducted over a dozen times, and mentions test sites, Nago and Shuri, in Okinawa. The US army reported some success in their experiments and the gathering of “useful data”.

"Field tests for stem rust of wheat and rice blast disease were begun at several sites in the (US) Midwest and south and in Okinawa with partial success in the accumulation of useful data," wrote Kyodo, citing its documents.

The US government discarded all its biological weapons in 1969 and discontinued testing, after a leak of chemical weapons made 20 American soldiers stationed on the island sick. Moreover, residents had to be evacuated from the surrounding area and were reported to still be suffering the effects of the toxins two years after the leak.

In response to public outrage, the US government was forced to launch Operation Red Hat – a mission to remove all the biological weapons stored on Okinawa.

Six years later in 1975, Washington signed the international convention against production and possession of biological weapons.

Okinawa came back under Japanese jurisdiction in 1972, but the US still keeps a military presence of around 50,000 troops on the island.

Their presence is a constant source of tension with local populations due to crimes committed by servicemen, disruptions caused by military flights and land use by the US military.

http://rt.com/news/us-tested-chemical-weapons-japan-476/


Edit to amend title.


Last edited by ramonmercado on 09-02-2014 13:46; edited 1 time in total
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JonfairwayOffline
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PostPosted: 13-01-2014 13:03    Post subject: Reply with quote

am i surprised ..... err no not at all....
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ramonmercadoOffline
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PostPosted: 09-02-2014 13:48    Post subject: Reply with quote

More and more...

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Judge sides with US servicemen used as guinea pigs in terrifying Cold War experiment
Published time: February 07, 2014 21:00
http://rt.com/usa/army-servicemen-cold-war-experiment-107/

The US Department of the Army.(AFP Photo / Paul J. Richards)

A federal judge has ruled the United States Army must quickly inform veterans of any potentially harmful health effects stemming from the secret medical and drug experiments conducted on them during the Cold War.

According to a report by Courthouse News wire service, the ruling comes in favor of 7,800 soldiers claiming to have been involved in the experiments. After recruiting Nazi scientists to help through a program called “Project Paperclip,” the Army and CIA administered between 250 and 400 kinds of drugs to the soldiers in an attempt to advance US ability to wage war.

Among the many drugs used were Sarin, amphetamines, LSD, mustard gas, THC, incapacitating agents, and phosgene, a chemical weapon used in trenches during World War I. By administering these drugs and others, the military hoped to uncover new ways to control human behavior, pinpoint weaknesses, hypnotize, and increase an individual’s resistance to torture.

These experiments began in the 1950s and continued until President Richard Nixon halted research into offensive chemical weapons in 1969. Although soldiers signed consent forms agreeing to undertake the experiments, the soldiers argued in court they essentially had no other choice under training that directed them to follow orders. Veterans also argued these forms violated international law and the Wilson Directive, which mandates voluntary consent as “essential.”

After U.S. District Judge Claudia Wilken ruled the Army must notify veterans of possible health concerns related to the experiments in November, the Army requested a delay in the process, claiming the notification process would cost nearly $9 million. This request was denied after Wilken ruled the cost borne by the Army paled in comparison to the health of veterans.

"On the one hand, there are the expenses that will be incurred by defendants and, on the other, there is the very real possibility that the aging and adversely affected test subjects will not learn about health effects that could be mitigated if known," Wilken wrote, according to Courthouse News.

"Any expense incurred by defendants doing research and providing information to adversely affected test subjects, even if defendants should not have been required to incur those expenses, would not be wasted.

"However, lost time for the adversely affected test subjects could lead to irreversible health consequences."

The lingering effects of the experiments have become grounds for contention between former soldiers and the Department of Veterans Affairs. Many veterans believe the long-term health issues they’ve developed can be traced directly back to the drugs they took decades ago at the behest of the government. The VA, however, has declined to cover the medical costs for the vast majority of those applying for coverage.

Speaking to CNN back in 2012, former Army Private Tim Josephs said that unless he agreed to the terms outlined in the experimental consent form, he would be thrown in jail.

"Sometimes it was an injection. Other times it was a pill," Josephs said, though he didn’t know what exactly he was taking. "A lot of chemicals were referred to as agent one or agent two."

Nonetheless, once the military began administering the drugs, Josephs was told, "There is nothing here that could ever harm you." Nowadays, he has been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease and was forced to retire early. The VA granted him 40 percent disability, but others haven’t been so lucky: roughly 84 of 86 health claims related to chemical or biological contact are turned down.

"The whole thing stinks, and if the American people knew about it, they would not tolerate it,” said attorney Gordon Erspamer to CNN. “This kind of behavior toward our veterans would not be allowed to happen.”
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ramonmercadoOffline
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PostPosted: 12-02-2014 16:04    Post subject: Reply with quote

This fits in here, the tests are mentioned in the article.

Quote:
Elite US troops trained to use backpack nukes
Published time: February 11, 2014 18:47
http://rt.com/usa/us-troops-backpack-nukes-578/

)ARCHIVE PHOTO: The light from an atomic bomb test explosion (Operation Redwing, Shot Erie) is reflected in the waters of Enewetak Atoll May 30 1956 (Reuters)

Skiing down a mountain and into a battlefield with a nuclear bomb strapped to your back seems like something you’d see only in a James Bond movie, but that’s just one of the things the US elite military personnel were trained to do during the Cold War.

In a detailed report by Foreign Policy, the publication chronicles the creation of the Special Atomic Demolition Munition (SAMD), a portable nuclear weapon that could be carried into battlefield by a single solider. During the Cold War’s final 25 years, Navy SEALs and Army Special Forces were trained to carry these “backpack nukes” beyond enemy lines where, if necessary, they'd be used to destroy valuable infrastructure and keep opposing forces at bay.

Concerned with the Soviet Union’s military advantage over the United States and its allies in terms of manpower and traditional weaponry, President Dwight Eisenhower looked to enhancing the country’s nuclear capabilities as a way to level the playing field. His “New Look” strategy, however, promised “massive retaliation” to any form of aggression by the Soviet Union – a bold strategy that in reality left the US with little room to maneuver.

“In the event that communist forces launched a limited, non-nuclear attack, the president would have to choose between defeat at the hands of a superior conventional force or a staggeringly disproportionate (and potentially suicidal) strategic nuclear exchange that would kill hundreds of millions of people," the report stated.

In an attempt to develop targeted nuclear weapons that wouldn’t cause as many casualties, the SAMD was born. Often strapped to a soldier’s back, the 58-pound bomb made it difficult for soldiers to maneuver through a war zone, and those chosen to carry the device – known as the “Green Light” teams – underwent extensive training to ensure they could deliver the bomb, even at the expense of their own lives.

"I think that my first reaction was that I didn't believe it," former Green Light member Ken Richter told Foreign Policy. "Because everything that I'd seen prior to that, World War II, showed this huge weapon. And we were going to put it on our backs and carry it? I thought they were joking."

More powerful than the bomb dropped on Hiroshima, though, the SAMD was no laughing matter. US forces would be subjected to eight to 12 hours of training a day when it came to using the device, and in some cases troops would parachute out of planes with the SAMD dangling below them in a protective case, dive underwater with it in a pressurized case, or, yes, ski down a mountain with bomb attached to them.

"I had a lot of people that I interviewed for our team,” Richter recalled. “Once they found out what the mission was, they said, 'No, thanks. I'd rather go back to Vietnam.' "

Fortunately, these weapons were never actually used. US allies were not particularly fond of the idea of detonating numerous nuclear devices across their countries, while others within the American military questioned the whole enterprise.

"In our hearts, we knew nobody was going to give control of these to a bunch of big old boys running around the countryside," Tom Davis, another Green Light member, told Foreign Policy. "We just didn't believe it was ever going to happen."

The SADM program was officially halted in 1989, after the Defense and Energy departments found it to be “obsolete.”

This, however, wasn't the only controversial idea the United States tested during the Cold War. A lawsuit is currently unfolding in federal court concerning a military program that subjected servicemen to various secret drug and chemical experiments. The US hoped to discover new ways to control human behavior, pinpoint weaknesses, hypnotize, and increase an individual’s resistance to torture.

As a result, many former soldiers have come forward claiming that their long-term health problems are a direct product of the experiments conducted on them. The Department of Veterans Affairs has generally declined to cover the health costs of these individuals, though just recently a federal judge ruled the US must notify all veterans of any potential health problems stemming from the experiments.
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