National Lawyers Guild
Photo by Jim West, jimwestphoto.com
August 10, 2010
Millions of Agent Orange victims in Vietnam are living with and dying from diseases and birth defects left behind from the U.S.’ spraying of Agent Orange and other chemicals during the Vietnam War. This legacy of the war, more than 35 years ago, also sickens and kills U.S. veterans and their children and grandchildren.
The culprit is the dioxin in Agent Orange. Dioxin is the most toxic chemical known to science. Those directly exposed due to the spraying of this chemical during the war or to dioxin that remains in dozens of "hot spots" in southern Vietnam, suffer from cancers, heart conditions and other illnesses. Their children and grandchildren are born (or die in the womb) from a tragic range of birth defects – both developmental and physical.
Dow Chemical, Monsanto and 35 other corporations knowingly made Agent Orange with unnecessarily elevated levels of dioxin in their greed for greater profits. The U.S. government ordered its soldiers to spray Agent Orange on the Vietnamese people and land while ignoring the threat to the health of the Vietnamese and of the U.S. servicemen and women.
But the tide is turning for those responsible for the immense pain and suffering caused by Agent Orange. U.S. and international public opinion is demanding justice and compensation for the victims of Agent Orange!
The Vietnam Agent Orange Relief & Responsibility Campaign is working with communities across the U.S. and with our representatives in Congress to develop legislation to comprehensively address the human needs of the victims in Vietnam and in the U.S. This legislation will address the need for health, rehabilitation and urgent care for Vietnamese victims of Agent Orange, cleanup of all the toxic hot spots in Vietnam, medical care for affected children and grandchildren of U.S. veteran Agent Orange victims and health care for affected Vietnamese Americans.
We continue to take part in an international corporate campaign to assure that Dow, Monsanto and the other culpable chemical companies pay to take care of the victims they have created.
Working with our partner in Vietnam, the Vietnam Association for Victims of Agent Orange/dioxin, we extend moral and material solidarity to the victims who are organizing for their own empowerment and development.
On this Agent Orange Day, take a moment to share the pain of the victims and to take action to help! Please go to www.vn-agentorange.org and sign an orange card, which will be delivered to your congressmember, in support of comprehensive Agent Orange legislation. Please contribute urgently needed funds for grass roots organizing in the U.S. and to aid the victims in Vietnam.
Together we can achieve justice and care for Agent Orange victims!
VAORRC is supported by: Veterans For Peace, Vietnam Veterans Against the War, Iraq Veterans Against the War, the National Lawyers Guild, International Association of Democratic Lawyers and many other organizations
Donations to the International Committee are greatly appreciated!
"Your interest and support has been a great encouragement to us at the Truth and Reconciliation Commission."
-- Desmond Tutu on the Guild's work in South Africa