Vietnam Agent Orange Relief and Responsibility Campaign (VAORRC), a project of Veterans for Peace (VFP), is sponsoring a fact-finding delegation of US veteran leaders that will be in Vietnam from March 28 to April 8, 2010. The delegation will survey the lingering effects of dioxin-laced herbicides like Agent Orange sprayed by U.S. forces during the American War on the people, animals and environment of Vietnam. The delegation will be hosted by Vietnam Association of Victims of Agent Orange/dioxin (VAVA).
Members of the delegation are:
- Michael Ferner, President Veterans for Peace
- Geoff Millard, Chair/Board of Directors, Iraq Veterans Against the War and journalist
- Michael Uhl, Veterans for Peace Board Member and author
- Ken Mayers, Veterans for Peace Board Member, and accounting consultant
- Susan Schnall, VAORRC Board Member and public health nurse
- Paul Cox, VAORRC Board Member, Vietnam Veterans Against the War member, and civil engineer
The delegation will visit Agent Orange victims in hospitals and care facilities, and in particular meet with affected families living in rural areas where health-delivery resources are less available and poverty persists.
Estimates of Vietnamese ill from widespread and persistent dioxin residues, now reaching into the third generation since Vietnam’s reunification in 1975, range from three to five million victims. Herbicides contaminated by dioxin were sprayed from 1961 to 1971 over approximately 1/8 the land area of southern Vietnam as a part of the US arsenal used against the Vietnamese resistance.
Delegation members are available for interviews upon their return home to the U.S.
“Agent Orange is not an artifact of a long-ago war, it is a bomb that continues to explode in the lives of the people of Vietnam, today,” said Vietnam veteran Paul Cox. “It is time for the US to step up to help the Vietnamese as they have finally done for US veterans.”