DOD Denies Medical Treatment


DOD Denies Medical Treatment

"..the test site at fort Greely [Alaska] was operated with cavalier disregard for the health of both military personnel and the residents of the small towns that surround the base...

"..the Army created a 19,000-acre reserve in 1952 for the explicit purpose of testing deadly chemical and biological weapons.. Between 1962 and 1967 the Army blasted hundreds of rockets and bombs filled with sarin and VX nerve agent into the region's wildlife-rich forests.. disposal of unused weapons was often haphazard and reckless...

"In 1965, for reasons that are unclear from the declassified documents, the Army sprayed Bacillus globigii aerosols, a bacteria implicated in serious hospital infections, up and down the populated valley surrounding the base.. nearby residents were never informed of the tests.. In fact, more than 700 people lived in the Tanana Valley in 1965--a fact apparently ignored by the Army...

"..veterans have come forward with various health problems.. the VA [response has been], "We have no record of those tests. You must be crazy--nothing like that ever happened."...

"[This is] now part of a class-action lawsuit filed in October 2002 against the DOD by veterans, their families and the Vietnam Veterans of America...

"Army representatives dismissed allegations that the site was still dangerous... That policy was bolstered by the Bush Administration's March 25 executive order delaying the release of millions of documents and giving the government more discretion to keep information indefinitely classified...

"Meanwhile, veterans continue to file claims for service-related health benefits, to no avail--not one has been granted healthcare on the basis of exposure to agents used in the secret experiments.." (Capozza, Korey. "Northern Exposure." The Nation, August 18/25 2003, 32-33).


Colby Glass, MLIS