Agent Orange/Herbicides Used Outside of Vietnam

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Wed 26 December 2007, 01:44 AM
Agent Orange/Herbicides Used Outside of Vietnam
In response to many e-mails I receive regarding AO use, here is a report and letter from Congressman Lane Evans.

Congressman Lane Evans (Illinois) Requested Information
(Lane Evans is retired from the US Congress)

I am also requesting an assessment of the use, testing or storage of Agent Orange, Agent Blue, Agent Purple, Agent White or other herbicides which contain dioxin, including the locations, amounts and relevant dates at the following locations and any other location for which documentation exists:

Aberdeen Proving Ground, Aberdeen, Maryland
Apalachicola National Forest (Sophoppy, Florida)
Avon Air Force Base, Florida
Beaumont, Texas
Brawley, California
Bushnell Army Air Field, Florida
Camp Detrick, Maryland
Dar and Prek Clong, Cambodia
Eglin Air Force Base, Florida
Fort Gordon, Georgia
Fort Richie, Maryland
Fredericton, New Brunswick, Canada
Guanica, and Joyuda, Puerto Rico
Gulfport, Mississippi
Huntington County, State College, Pennsylvania
Jacksonville, Florida
Kauai, Hawaii
Kingston, Rhode Island
Kompong Cham Province, Cambodia
Las Marias, Puerto Rico
Las Mesas Cerros and La Jugua, Mayaguez, Puerto Rico
Loquillo, Puerto Rico
Mauna Loa, Hilo, Hawaii
Operation PACER HO (Disposal at sea)
Pinal Mountains, Globe, Arizona
Pranburi and other locations in Thailand
Prosser, Washington
Rio Grande, Puerto Rico
Wayside and Wilcox, Mississippi

I would appreciate a response to this letter by June 13, 2003. If you have any questions about this request, please contact Mary Ellen Mc Carthy, Democratic Staff Director, Subcommittee on Benefits. Thank you for your efforts to improve services to our Nation's veterans.


Ranking Democratic Member

Agent Orange/Herbicides Used Outside of Vietnam
The VA has received a listing from the Defense Department of locations outside of Viet Nam where Agent Orange was used or tested over a number of years. The information gives periods of time, locations and chemicals used. It does not contain units involved or individual identifying information.

The listings are almost exclusively Army records although there are an extremely limited number of Navy and Air Force records. These listings relate only to chemical efficacy testing and/or operational testing. The records do not refer to the use of Agent Orange or other chemicals in routine base maintenance activities such as spraying along railroad tracks, weed control on rifle ranges, etc. Information on such use does not exist. VA will develop for proof of exposure for claims for disabilities resulting from Agent Orange exposure outside of Viet Nam.

VA does have significant information regarding Agent Orange use in Korea along the DMZ. DoD has confirmed that Agent Orange was used from April 1968 up through July 1969 along the DMZ. DoD defoliated the fields of fire between the front line defensive positions and the south barrier fence. The size of the treated area was a strip of lane 151 miles long and up to 350 yards wide from the fence to north of the "civilian control line." There is no indication that herbicide was sprayed in the DMZ itself.

Herbicides were applied through hand spraying and by hand distribution of pelletized herbicides. Although restrictions were put in place to limit potential for spray drift, run-off, and damage to food crops, records indicate that effects of spraying were sometimes observed as far as 200 meters down wind.

Units in the area during the period of use of herbicide were as follows: The four combat brigades of the 2nd Infantry Division. This includes the following units: a) 1-38 Infantry b) 2-38 Infantry c) 1-23 Infantry d) 2-23 Infantry e) 3-23 Infantry f) 3-32 Infantry g) 109th Infantry h) 209th Infantry i) 1-72 Armor j) 2-72 Armor k) 4-7th Cavalry. 3rd Brigade of the 7th. Infantry Division. This includes the following units: a) 1-17th Infantry b) 2-17th Infantry c) 1-73 Armor d) 2-10th Cavalry. Field Artillery, Signal and Engineer troops were supplied as support personnel as required. The estimated number of exposed personnel is 12,056.

Unlike Viet Nam, exposure to Agent Orange is not presumed for veterans who served in Korea. Claims for compensation for disabilities resulting from Agent Orange exposure from veterans who served in Korea during this period will be developed for evidence of exposure. If the veteran was exposed the presumptive conditions found for Agent Orange exposure apply.


Other Presumed Locations
The only real issue is proving exposure (all persons who served in Vietnam are presumed to have been exposed.) The VA is determining whether Department of Defense information is sufficient to add some non-Vietnam units to the presumptive exposure list, but none have been added as of June 2001. The following areas outside of Vietnam have been confirmed as places where AO was used:

1. The Korean demilitarized zone in 1968 and 1969 (extensive spraying).
2. Fort Drum, NY in 1959 (testing).

Other areas where veterans allege AO to have been sprayed include:

1. Guam from 1955 through 1960s (spraying).
2. Johnston Atoll (1972-1978) was used for unused AO storage.
3. Panama Canal Zone from 1960s to early 1970s (spraying).
4. Elgin AFB (Agents Orange and Blue) on Firing Range and Viet Cong Village.
5. Wright-Patterson AFB (OH) and Kelly AFB (TX).

Also see: 1154-3.304-AO Outside of Vietnam

See section D under combat. This was just revised in Dec of 2001. This allows those that served outside of Vietnam and were exposed to AO to file for compensation. Also attached is a document about Panama and Guam having also been added to the list of AO locations.

[Code of Federal Regulations]
[Title 38, Volume 1]
[Revised as of July 1, 2001]
From the U.S. Government Printing Office via GPO Access
[CITE: 38CFR3.304]
[Page 219-220]
Thu 27 December 2007, 08:15 AM
Ref: A pamplet titled, "Agent Orange Review" dated July 2006 by Department of Veterans Affairs.

It refers to a site:>Click: DoD Report on Herbicides Used Outside Of Vietnam

It identifies outside locations.

I have been advised by three people representing the Phoenix VA they are on a hold for processing claims for AO outside Vietnam until they receive word.

I sent copies of two approved claims involving personnel in Thailand and Okinawa, dated 2004 and 1998 respectfully. Yet to receive a response.

Anyone aware of the status in their area?

Thu 27 December 2007, 08:26 AM
Ref: A pamphlet titled, “ Agent Orange Review” dated July 2006 by the Department of Veterans Affairs.

It refers to a site: Click: “DoD report on herbicides used outside of Vietnam.”

It provides location of areas known to use/test herbicides. The list includes Thailand. I have been advised recently by three people representing VA in Phoenix they are on hold to process claims for exposure of AO outside Vietnam.

I sent copies of claims processed/approved by the VA for personnel that served in Okinawa, and Thailand dated 1998, and 2004 respectfully. Yet to receive a response.

Anyone know the status in his or her area?

Fri 28 December 2007, 02:22 AM
Excellent questions, or should I say issues! VA has those claims on hold, even though the VA's own AO Review admits usage. It is the prime example, of one group not acknowledging the other, in the same department. We have won some of the claims based on direct service connection, while exposure seems to be unanswered.
It appears to me using basic math, the problem for many, will go to the grave with the veteran. The generally younger of the AO exposed veterans would have been born in 1954. So at age 54 it appears, the deadly cancer issues will be all but over, by the time recognition is made.
Mon 14 January 2008, 03:50 AM
I have a claim filed for diseases associated with agent orange exposure outside Vietnam. How can the VA justify keeping a claim on hold and how long can they hold a claim in that status? If the VA just keeps a claim on hold how then does it stand a chance to procede through the appeals process? Also how do I find out if my claim is on hold?
Mon 14 January 2008, 08:23 AM
Contact the VA at your location. 1-800-827-1000. Appreciate sharing their response.

-->Edited by MOD Personal email addresses will result in the kind of junk mail YOU DO NOT WANT<--
Mon 14 January 2008, 08:50 AM
Originally posted by 16862751:
I have a claim filed for diseases associated with agent orange exposure outside Vietnam. How can the VA justify keeping a claim on hold and how long can they hold a claim in that status? If the VA just keeps a claim on hold how then does it stand a chance to procede through the appeals process? Also how do I find out if my claim is on hold?

I suggest you contact a veterans service officer and have them assist you.
Sun 10 February 2008, 10:50 PM
I have updated my ID but I originally posted as 16862751.

If you search prior bva decisions at and type in the search block {dod agent orange} you will find aprox. 165 cases of claimed herbicide exposure outside Vietnam. In some of the cases you will find that the veteran is just playing six pockets and he does not stand a chance, most cases however are well presented and show a lot of documentation. You will not find a case that is granted, they are all denied or remanded. These cases never give the veteran the benefit of doubtin any instance. The procedings seem to be ruthless and even vicious towards the vet and it seems that if the proof may be there, a reason to remand the case is found. Check it out for yourself.

Due to the published list of places where AO is now known to have been used and tested outside Vietnam, and that information being due as a result of the request by Congressman Lane Evans, a change in procedure was initiated in the ajudication of those claims.

The VA has developed specific procedures to determine whether a
veteran was exposed to herbicides, other than
Vietnam or along the demilitarized zone (DMZ) in Korea. VA's
Adjudication Procedure Manual, M21-1MR, Part VI, Subpart ii,
2.C.10n., directs the RO to send a detailed statement of the
veteran's claimed herbicide exposure to the Compensation and
Pension (C&P) Service via e-mail at VAVBAWAS/CO/214A and
request a review of DoD's inventory of herbicide operations
to determine whether herbicides were used or tested as alleged.
If such review does not confirm the exposure, a request should
then be sent to the U.S. Army and Joint Services Research Center
(JSRRC) for verification. Prior to any further adjudication of
the claim, the veteran's allegations of Agent Orange exposure
outside Vietnam should be investigated and developed as prescribed
in M21-1MR.

If the RO fails to follow these instructions to the letter the BVA remands the case. The case is also remanded for the reason of no C&P exam. The number of cases remanded for these two reasons alone are staggering, especially when you consider that the remand will add aprox. two years to the case.

I am very comfortable with the amount of evidence that I have been able to produce in order to prove my case. Given the benefit of reasonable doubt whatsoever, I expect to win the claim. The mound of evidence leaves no cracks, and I have seen no similar solidity of evidence in any of the other direct exposure cases that I have reviewed. If my case is ajudicated with the same vengence that I have witnessed in the other cases of exposure outside vietnam, It will be a long and tough road ahead. The VA process is suposed to be a non-advesarial process but I am sad to say that the process is no longer what it was originally intended to be. I have a feeling that we will need the help of lawyers to win our earned benefits. As it is now there are no checks and balances so as to keep the system honorable.

I was given a hearing with a DRO on August 15, 2007, but no decision as of this time.
Mon 11 February 2008, 02:40 AM
Crippo even though you still choose to be unknown to us, I will respond to your post. You have posted a very good point, VA has no intention of paying any benefit they are not required to pay by regulation. Even after going through the hoops in a court case (Haas) the VA still has not paid a claim to the BWN vets, even though the decision was in favor of the veteran. The appeals court decided in favor of the veteran and the Administration tied it up in the Legal Counsel office.
The reason the members ask to know who you are, is this and the other H&F boards are different than those popular debate boards. We try to help one another and when people look at a profile, they see where you served and when. That gives some credibility to the issue. I am at a loss of why that would be information someone does not wish to share. Being listed as This Member, Army, Veteran/Prior Service, Resides in Tennessee; tells little more than a private profile. If someone saw your profile, even if your name was listed Pogo Possum on the profile and they happened to served in that area you listed, you may well get more response to your issues.

Bio, Not available. Conflicts & Operations, Not available. Interests, Not available
Mon 11 February 2008, 12:11 PM
Dave, I have no reason to post as an anonymous person.I just did not think that a complete profile was necessary to join in.

My direct exposure to a herbicide agent was at Fort Gordon GA. while serving in the duty as a military Game Warden.
Tue 12 February 2008, 05:33 AM
Just a little research work that I did in relation to the Agent Orange Committee, complemints of crippo, hope it helps someone else, pass it on. Note pages 49 & 50. I worked as a game warden at Fort Gordon in close association with the Forestry Division. 1967-1969. My diseases are chloracne, diabetes, heart failure etc.

Site 21
Location: Fort Gordon, Augusta, Georgia
Fort Chaffee, Fort Smith, Arkansas
Apalachicola National Forest, Sopchoppy, Florida
Date → July 1967 – October 1967
Activity Description: During the period December 1966 to October 1967, the
newly named “Plant Science Laboratories” at Fort Detrick initiated a comprehensive
short-term project to evaluate desiccants and herbicidal mixtures as rapid-acting
defoliants. The objectives of this study were to evaluate rapid-acting desiccants as
defoliants and to assess the defoliation response of woody vegetation to mixtures of
herbicides and/or desiccants. The criteria for assessment was based principally on
rapidity of action, but included other features such as safety and ease of handling,
compatibility with dissemination systems, and low toxicity to man and wildlife.
The approach to the objective of an improved rapid-acting defoliant involved three
phases: (1) evaluation of commercially available rapid desiccants or contact herbicides;
(2) evaluation of improved formulations of rapid desiccants developed under industry
contacts and by in-house effort; (3) development and evaluation of desiccant-herbicide
mixtures containing the rapid defoliant characteristics with the sustained long-term
effects of Orange and other Tactical Herbicides. The project required an immediate
access to a diversity of woody vegetation. Accordingly, Fort Detrick arranged for test
locations at Fort Gordon near Augusta, Georgia; Fort Chaffee near Fort Smith, Arkansas,
and Apalachicola National Forest near Sopchoppy, Florida.
The Georgia site was described as a warm temperate, humid, moderate rainfall climate
with deep, well-drained sands in rolling topography. The vegetation type was an oakhickory-
pine forest. The Arkansas site was described as a temperate continental,
moderate rainfall climate with fine sandy loam soils in rolling topography. The
vegetation type was an oak-hickory forest. The Apalachicola National Forest site was
described as a subtropical, humid, moderate precipitation climate with sandy soils in a
flat poorly drained topography. The vegetation type was described as a Southern mixed
forest. All sites were selected because of their isolation from any local human
populations, e.g., in Florida, the site was a ridge located in a swamp forest.
Assessment: The desiccants selected for evaluation included Herbicide Blue (a
tactical herbicide), and the commercial desiccants diquat, paraquat, dinitrobutylphenol
(DNBP), pentachlorophenol (PCP), hexachloroacetone (HCA), and monosodium
methanearsonate (MSMA), pentachloro-pentenoic acid (AP-20), endothall, and various
mixed formulations of these desiccants. The systemic herbicides included the two tactical
herbicides Orange and White; the potassium salt, triisopropanolamine salts, and the
isooctyl ester of picloram; and, a ethylhexyl ester of 2,4,5-T mixed with HCA. Mixtures
of propanil, nitrophenol, linuron, and silvex were also evaluated. All chemicals were
furnished by Fort Detrick.
Aerial application at these three sites were made with a Bell G-2 helicopter equipped with
two 40-gallon tanks and a 26-foot boom with 6-inch nozzle positions adaptable for
volume deliveries of 3, 6, or 10 gallons per acre in a 50-foot swath. Spray equipment,
pilot, and support were furnished under contract with Allied Helicopter Service of Tulsa,
Oklahoma. Aerial applications were made on duplicate 3-acre plots, 200 by 660 feet in
dimension. A sampling and evaluation trail was established in each plot on a diagonal
beginning at 100 feet from one corner. Major species were marked along 500 feet of this
transect and individual plants were identified by combinations of colored plastic ribbons.
A minimum of 10 individuals of each species was marked unless fewer were present.
Evaluations were made at 1-, 5-, 10-, 30-, and 60-day intervals by experienced Fort
Detrick personnel. At each evaluation period the identical marked individuals of the
major species were rated for defoliation and desiccation. At each location, approximately
475 gallons (~10 drums) of Herbicide Blue, 95 gallons (~2 drums) of Herbicide Orange,
and 6 gallons of Herbicide White were expended.
The assistance of Department of Army forestry personnel at Fort Gordon, Fort Chaffee,
and the 3rd and 4th Army Headquarters were acknowledged in the report for their support
in the selection and preparation of sites in Georgia and Arkansas. The land and facilities
for the Florida tests were provided by the Supervisor, Apalachicola National Forest,
Tallahassee, Florida. Personnel from the Physical Sciences Division, Fort Detrick
assisted in the development of formulations and preparations of field test mixtures. They
also provided the data on the physical characteristics of the candidate tactical defoliants
and mixtures.
Sources: Darrow RA, Frank JR, Martin JW, Demaree, KD, Creager RA (1971): Field
Evaluation of Desiccants and Herbicide Mixtures as Rapid Defoliants. Technical Report
114, Plant Sciences Laboratories, Fort Detrick, Frederick, Maryland. Document
unclassified but subject to special export control. Available from the Defense
Documentation Center, Accession Number AD 880685.
Fri 15 February 2008, 04:30 PM
Thanks crippo for your excellent posts!
Tue 26 February 2008, 07:28 PM
This is from the news cast of 2/25/2008
CBS News Channel 5 in Nashville tn.

NewsChannel 5 Investigates:
Veteran Bears Scars of Stateside Agent Orange

Posted: Feb 25, 2008 05:29 PM CST

Featured Videos

Veteran Bears Scars of Stateside Agent Orange

Footage showing the military spraying the toxic herbicide to thin out the jungles of Vietnam.

James Cripps, a Vietnam era veteran

Blackheads on Cripps' back contain poisonous residue from Agent Orange.

Dr. Dewey Dunn, an Agent Orange expert

About Agent Orange
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs

When it comes to deadly poisons, few are better known. The military's use of Agent Orange is one of the dark chapters of the Vietnam War.

But NewsChannel 5 investigative reporter Ben Hall has found the military used Agent Orange here in the United States -- and one veteran says he has the health problems to prove it.

Agent Orange was a toxic herbicide used by the military to thin out the jungles of Vietnam. Soldiers sprayed millions of gallons, unaware how poisonous it was.

"There was a problem and the evidence is on my back and my chest and 40 years of my life," says James Cripps, a Vietnam era veteran.

He says he was poisoned by Agent Orange, but he never served in Vietnam.

"When I got wounded I didn't know it I had no reason to suspect there would have been no way to have proved it," Cripps says.

Cripps had what seemed like a dream job as game warden at Fort Gordon in Georgia.

"This is me in 1971 when I got out of the Army you can see all the marks on my face," he says, pointing to photos of himself.

Cripps says when he left the military he had already been exposed. He believes he sprayed Agent Orange in the lakes around Fort Gordon to kill weeds.

"I was ordered to spray that herbicide," Cripps says. And pictures show signs warning people about fishing in the lakes Cripps once cared for. "I know what's in those lakes, I put it there," adds Cripps.

NewsChannel 5 Investigates has uncovered defense department documents that prove the military sprayed Agent Orange at Fort Gordon during the time Cripps was there.

Documents detail more than 30 locations in the United States where Agent Orange was tested.

The documents show helicopters sprayed at least 95 gallons of Agent Orange at Fort Gordon in 1967. Cripps says that alone should prove he was exposed.

"A lot of them cause scars sometimes they go so sore he can't wear his shirt," his wife, Sandra Cripps, says.

But he and his wife say his body offers the greatest proof. The blackheads on his back contain the poisonous residue from Agent Orange which causes acne called ‘chloracne.'

"In some persons the skin legions persist," says Dr. Dewey Dunn, an Agent Orange expert.
He says chloracne is a tell-tale sign of Agent Orange exposure. "It's just sort of a marker so its on the list and probably at the top of the list."

Dr. Dunn examined James Cripps but could not talk specifically about his case. Medical records show Dr. Dunn diagnosed Cripps with Chloracne and type-two diabetes, another sign of exposure.

Despite all the evidence, the VA will not approve James Cripps disability claim. "I'm being denied my medical care to this very day," says Cripps.

"From what I see it strictly gets down to money," says Donald Stephens, who is with the Disabled American Veterans. He's helped hundreds of veterans prepare their VA medical claims.

Ben Hall asks, "How strong is Mr. Cripps claim?"

"A ten," Stephens answers. "I would give it a ten."

He says there's plenty of help for veterans exposed in Vietnam, but he believes Cripps claim would open the floodgates for veterans exposed in the United States.

Meanwhile, James Cripps is on multiple medications and he's struggling to pay his medical bills. And now the VA is actually garnishing his Social Security checks.

"We have discussed of late, even yesterday, the thought of suicide," he confides.

After years of service, Cripps and his wife feel broken and betrayed.

"I can see why some veterans would give up," Sandra Cripps says. "It's not fair."
Wed 27 February 2008, 02:40 AM
"I can see why some veterans would give up," Sandra Cripps says. "It's not fair."

I agree with Sandra. It is easy to see why so many have given up. But not James and not those others here on this board. This is a fight until victory is granted to the exposed and disabled veteran, no matter where he or she contacted the substance while serving this nation.

Dave Barker
Wed 27 February 2008, 09:59 AM
Click here: Wounded Times

I agree, but the sinking feelings do not go away. Overcome and push on.

Agent Orange case won as due to exposure CONUS, there are more! Docket No 91-47 197