Global chemical giants knew about the health dangers of dioxins DECADES before Vietnam

Thursday, July 12, 2018
By Paul Martin

by: Ethan Huff
Thursday, July 12, 2018

Among the many horrors of the Vietnam War was the United States military’s spraying of Agent Orange, a highly toxic defoliant, throughout the rainforests of the South Pacific. This egregious military action resulted in countless injuries and deaths – its lingering effects still rearing their ugly head today in veterans who were exposed to it during their days in active service. And while the assumption has long been that nobody knew just how poisonous Agent Orange was until after the war had ended, we now know that its manufacturers were fully aware of the chemical’s extreme toxicity several decades prior.

It was November 17, 1953, to be precise, when a horrific accident took place at a German chemical manufacturing plant owned by Badische Anilin und Soda-Fabrik, also known as BASF. Dozens of workers came into contact with a substance known as 2,3,7,8-TCDD, a chemical dioxin compound similar to those found in Agent Orange, that resulted in “horrible skin eruptions with nearly blister-like welts and some ulcerations where infections ensued.” These eruptions occurred primarily on “the face, neck, arms, and upper half of the body” of those exposed, according to historical documents.

The problem persisted for more than a year, in fact, with many more workers developing horrible symptoms in response to the chemical that caused them to suffer conditions like insomnia, persistent dizziness, joint pain, and loss of libido. BASF scientists brought test rabbits into the facility to see how they would fare, and after just two weeks all of them died of liver failure. It was during this time that dioxins were first identified as a harmful byproduct of herbicide and pesticide production, typically resulting from the overheating of chemical compounds like trichlorophenol.

But rather than make this important information known, BASF, and later Monsanto, kept it a secret. Dioxins would continue to show up in Agent Orange and many other chemical pesticides and herbicides manufactured in the years that followed, resulting in many people, including soldiers who bravely put their lives on the line to serve the country, suffering serious health consequences and even death.

Monsanto knew BEFORE Vietnam that 2,4,5-T in Agent Orange was extremely toxic

The Rest…HERE

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