Monday, February 27, 2017

Week 8 Prabhjit S Mann

From this week’s reading “Scorched Earth” Legacy of Chemical Warfare in Vietnam, the author Fred Wilcox highlights how the United States used Chemical weapons to destroy & eliminate the Vietnamese people to destroy their livelihoods. The United States used such horrific acts wanting to not only eliminate the people in the warfare but also their natural environment from producing agriculture production the lifeline of the economy. The United States army used a special chemical weapon called “AGENT ORANGE”, was a special mixture of herbicides used during the Vietnam War. It mixture of chemical defoliants used by U.S. military forces during the Vietnam War to eliminate forest cover for North Vietnamese and Viet Cong troops, as well as crops that might be used to feed them. Basically it was a chemical that didn’t allow the growth of any vegetation and killed any vegetation that was grown. The U.S. had used this to force the Viet-Cong troops out of their home ground in the forest and jungles. Not only did this chemical weapon cause the environment and corpse to suffer but it played a drastic role and tribble effect on the lives of the people that came in contact with this. It caused serious-health problems on the people which included tumors, birth defects, rashes, psychological symptoms and cancer–among returning U.S. servicemen and their families as well as among the Vietnamese population. Not only were the local population suffering from this but U.S. personnel that went into these areas fighting the Viet-Cong troops also suffered from this. U.S. aircraft were deployed to spray powerful mixtures of herbicides around roads, rivers, canals and military bases, as well as on crops that might be used to supply enemy troops. The Geneva Protocol prohibits use or development of chemical and biological weapons. Yet no sanctions or Restrictions were ever imposed on the U.S. for the use of these weapons by the international community. Yet recently we have seen that countries like Syria & Iraq that have also used these weapons in retaliation where the U.S. and the International community have intervened in their civil wars, by deploying troops and imposing sanctions on them.  This shows that since the U.S. is considered an elite super power it thinks it can get away with anything and not be held accountable for it it’s actions. it is up to the common people like us to raise awareness for these crimes against humanity and have the U.S. be held responsible for their actions and not think that at the end if they pay the country for the damage once they arent held accountable anymore. Because people up to today still suffer from those effects that were left in the soil. 
Question- Why is it that Chemical weapons are prohibited from being used but its ok to have possession of them? and if a nation uses them what action does the international community take.

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