Friday, September 6, 2013


OMNI:  US CHEMICAL WARFARE NEWSLETTER #2.    September 7, 2013.   Compiled by Dick Bennett for a Culture of Peace.  (#1July 16, 2012). 

Here is the link to all OMNI newsletters:   For a knowledge-based peace, justice, and ecology movement and an informed citizenry as the foundation for change.  See: SYRIA, War Crimes, Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD), Vietnam War and other wars.

Contents #1
VVAW vs. Agent Orange
Agent Orange Relief Act
VFP vs. Agent Orange
Wikipedia:  Tear Gas
War Resisters League Campaign vs. Tear Gas
Israeli Tear Gas

Contents #2
Messamore, 10 US Chemical Attacks
Dixon, US to Protect Syria?
Ives, US to Clean Agent Orange from Danang
Palazzo, Myelodysplastic Syndromes
US Close Support
ICBUW, VFP,  Ban Uranium Weapons
Hall, WRL’s Anti-Tear Gas Campaign
WRL, Resistance to Tear Gas in Quebec
Search Google

[I had prepared this newsletter when the following article by Messamore was forwarded to me by David D.  I thought it provided a strong opener.

1. Vietnam dioxin 1962-1971; 2.  Israel vs. Palestinians, white phosphorous, 08-09; 3. Iraq, white phosphorous, 04; 4. Iraq (US) vs. Iran, Kurds, sarin, nerve gas, mustard gas,  88;  5. St. Louis, 1950s;  6. Occupy, tear gas, 2011;  7. Waco, tear gas, 93;  8. Iraq, DU, 03;  9. Japan, napalm, 44-5;  10 Hiroshima-Nagasaki, nuclear.]
10 Chemical Weapons Attacks Washington Doesn’t Want You to Talk About

Wesley Messamore
September 5, 2013
[The US] lacks the moral authority. We’re talking about a government with a history of using chemical weapons against innocent people far more prolific and deadly than the mere accusations Assad faces from a trigger-happy Western military-industrial complex, bent on stifling further investigation before striking.
Here is a list of 10 chemical weapons attacks carried out by the U.S. government or its allies against civilians..
1. The U.S. Military Dumped 20 Million Gallons of Chemicals on Vietnam from 1962 – 1971
10, chemical, weapons, attacks, washington, doesnt, want, you, to, talk, about,
Via: AP
During the Vietnam War, the U.S. military sprayed 20 million gallons of chemicals, including the very toxic Agent Orange, on the forests and farmlands of Vietnam and neighboring countries, deliberately destroying food supplies, shattering the jungle ecology, and ravaging the lives of hundreds of thousands of innocent people. Vietnam estimates that as a result of the decade-long chemical attack, 400,000 people were killed or maimed, 500,000 babies have been born with birth defects, and 2 million have suffered from cancer or other illnesses. In 2012, the Red Cross estimated that one million people in Vietnam have disabilities or health problems related to Agent Orange.
2. Israel Attacked Palestinian Civilians with White Phosphorus in 2008 – 2009
10, chemical, weapons, attacks, washington, doesnt, want, you, to, talk, about,
Via: AP
White phosphorus is a horrific incendiary chemical weapon that melts human flesh right down to the bone.
In 2009, multiple human rights groups, including Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International, and International Red Cross reported that the Israeli government was attacking civilians in their own country with chemical weapons. An Amnesty International team claimed to find “indisputable evidence of the widespread use of white phosphorus” as a weapon in densely-populated civilian areas. The Israeli military denied the allegations at first, but eventually admitted they were true.
After the string of allegations by these NGOs, the Israeli military even hit a UN headquarters(!) in Gaza with a chemical attack. How do you think all this evidence compares to the case against Syria? Why didn’t Obama try to bomb Israel?
3. Washington Attacked Iraqi Civilians with White Phosphorus in 2004
10, chemical, weapons, attacks, washington, doesnt, want, you, to, talk, about,
Via: AP
In 2004, journalists embedded with the U.S. military in Iraq began reporting the use of white phosphorus in Fallujah against Iraqi insurgents. First the military lied and said that it was only using white phosphorus to create smokescreens or illuminate targets. Thenit admitted to using the volatile chemical as an incendiary weapon. At the time, Italian television broadcaster RAI aired a documentary entitled, “Fallujah, The Hidden Massacre,” including grim video footage and photographs, as well as eyewitness interviews with Fallujah residents and U.S. soldiers revealing how the U.S. government indiscriminately rained white chemical fire down on the Iraqi city and melted women and children to death.
4. The CIA Helped Saddam Hussein Massacre Iranians and Kurds with Chemical Weapons in 1988
10, chemical, weapons, attacks, washington, doesnt, want, you, to, talk, about,
CIA records now prove that Washington knew Saddam Hussein was using chemical weapons (including sarin, nerve gas, and mustard gas) in the Iran-Iraq War, yet continued to pour intelligence into the hands of the Iraqi military, informing Hussein of Iranian troop movements while knowing that he would be using the information to launch chemical attacks. At one point in early 1988, Washington warned Hussein of an Iranian troop movement that would have ended the war in a decisive defeat for the Iraqi government. By March an emboldened Hussein with new friends in Washington struck a Kurdish village occupied by Iranian troops with multiple chemical agents, killing as many as 5,000 people and injuring as many as 10,000 more, most of them civilians. Thousands more died in the following years from complications, diseases, and birth defects.
5. The Army Tested Chemicals on Residents of Poor, Black St. Louis Neighborhoods in The 1950s
10, chemical, weapons, attacks, washington, doesnt, want, you, to, talk, about,
In the early 1950s, the Army set up motorized blowers on top of residential high-rises in low-income, mostly black St. Louis neighborhoods, including areas where as much as 70% of the residents were children under 12. The government told residents that it was experimenting with a smokescreen to protect the city from Russian attacks, but it was actually pumping the air full of hundreds of pounds of finely powdered zinc cadmium sulfide. The government admits that there was a second ingredient in the chemical powder, but whether or not that ingredient was radioactive remains classified. Of course it does. Since the tests, an alarming number of the area’s residents have developed cancer. In 1955, Doris Spates was born in one of the buildings the Army used to fill the air with chemicals from 1953 – 1954. Her father died inexplicably that same year, she has seen four siblings die from cancer, and Doris herself is a survivor of cervical cancer.
6. Police Fired Tear Gas at Occupy Protesters in 2011
10, chemical, weapons, attacks, washington, doesnt, want, you, to, talk, about,
The savage violence of the police against Occupy protesters in 2011 was well documented, and included the use of tear gas and other chemical irritants. Tear gas is prohibited for use against enemy soldiers in battle by the Chemical Weapons Convention. Can’t police give civilian protesters in Oakland, California the same courtesy and protection that international law requires for enemy soldiers on a battlefield?
7. The FBI Attacked Men, Women, and Children With Tear Gas in Waco in 1993
10, chemical, weapons, attacks, washington, doesnt, want, you, to, talk, about,
At the infamous Waco siege of a peaceful community of Seventh Day Adventists, the FBI pumped tear gas into buildings knowing that women, children, and babies were inside. The tear gas was highly flammable and ignited, engulfing the buildings in flames and killing 49 men and women, and 27 children, including babies and toddlers. Remember, attacking an armed enemy soldier on a battlefield with tear gas is a war crime. What kind of crime is attacking a baby with tear gas?
8. The U.S. Military Littered Iraq with Toxic Depleted Uranium in 2003
10, chemical, weapons, attacks, washington, doesnt, want, you, to, talk, about,
Via: AP
In Iraq, the U.S. military has littered the environment with thousands of tons of munitions made from depleted uranium, a toxic and radioactive nuclear waste product. As a result, more than half of babies born in Fallujah from 2007 – 2010 were born with birth defects. Some of these defects have never been seen before outside of textbooks with photos of babies born near nuclear tests in the Pacific. Cancer and infant mortality have also seen a dramatic rise in Iraq. According to Christopher Busby, the Scientific Secretary of the European Committee on Radiation Risk, “These are weapons which have absolutely destroyed the genetic integrity of the population of Iraq.” After authoring two of four reports published in 2012 on the health crisis in Iraq, Busby described Fallujah as having, “the highest rate of genetic damage in any population ever studied.”
9. The U.S. Military Killed Hundreds of Thousands of Japanese Civilians with Napalm from 1944 – 1945
10, chemical, weapons, attacks, washington, doesnt, want, you, to, talk, about,
Napalm is a sticky and highly flammable gel which has been used as a weapon of terror by the U.S. military. In 1980, the UN declaredthe use of napalm on swaths of civilian population a war crime. That’s exactly what the U.S. military did in World War II, dropping enough napalm in one bombing raid on Tokyo to burn 100,000 people to death, injure a million more, and leave a million without homes in the single deadliest air raid of World War II.
10. The U.S. Government Dropped Nuclear Bombs on Two Japanese Cities in 1945
10, chemical, weapons, attacks, washington, doesnt, want, you, to, talk, about,
Although nuclear bombs may not be considered chemical weapons, I believe we can agree they belong to the same category. They certainly disperse an awful lot of deadly radioactive chemicals. They are every bit as horrifying as chemical weapons if not more, and by their very nature, suitable for only one purpose: wiping out an entire city full of civilians. It seems odd that the only regime to everuse one of these weapons of terror on other human beings has busied itself with the pretense of keeping the world safe from dangerous weapons in the hands of dangerous governments


Print allSent: Thursday, September 5, 2013 10:28 AM  (from Sonny San Juan)
US, the Biggest User of Chemical Weapons in History Asserts "Right To Protect" Syria | Black Agenda Report

US, the Biggest User of Chemical Weapons in History Asserts "Right To Protect" Syria
Wed, 09/04/2013 - 14:07 — Bruce A. Dixon
image/jpeg iconright_to_protect.jpg [1]
A Black Agenda Radio Commentary by Bruce A. Dixon
How can the US proclamation that it intends to intervene militarily in Syria to protect civilians from chemical warfare be taken seriously, when the US has slaughtered and poisoned hundreds of thousands with chemical weapons itself, in Vietnam, Iraq and elsewhere?
US, the Biggest User of Chemical Weapons in History Asserts "Right To Protect" Syria
A Black Agenda Radio Commentary by Bruce A. Dixon
Outside the bubble of ignorance and unreality that corporate media and corporate rule impose on the US public, the world is horrified and aghast not at the alleged use of nerve gas against Syrian civilians, but at the notion that the United States claims the right to bomb Syria supposedly to “protect” its people.
From 1961 to 1972 the US military executed the biggest and deadliest chemical warfare operation in history. It was Operation Trail Dust, in which more than 20 million thousands of tons of blended dioxin and other poisons, the most famous known as Agent Orange, were sprayed across 10% of the land area of South Vietnam, along with big tracts of Laos and Cambodia.
The objective was to kill the lush triple canopy jungle in which Vietnamese fighters hid and through which they transported supplies, and to kill the animals & crops of Vietnamese peasants in areas the US and its puppets could not control, driving that population into its cities and so-called “strategic hamlets.” Many of the estimated 2 million wa r Vietnamese dead perished from the short term effects of US chemical warfare, while Vietnamese and other doctors verify that since then an estimated half million have been born with major impairments. To this day the US has never accepted any responsibility for this ghastly and ongoing atrocity.
Even if we stick only to western Asia, the US record on chemical weapons used against civilians is unprecedented.
During the 1980s Iran-Iraq war the Pentagon provided [2]Saddam Hussein [2] with satellite intelligence [2] so he'd know where to fire his nerve gas at Iranian troop concentrations.
In its two Gulf Wars, the US littered Kuwait and Iraq with radioactive depleted uranium munitions which continue to poison countless civilians today. Hospitals in places like Fallujah report skyrocketing numbers of radiation-induced birth defects. And during the Obama administration the US winked at Israel's use of ghastly white phosphorus made in the USA against Palestinian civilians in Gaza.
There are treaties banning chemical weapons, but none of them authorize any nation to launch “preventive” or punitive strikes against those who do. Most Arabs, most of the world knows this history, and so do more than a few Americans, including much of the so-called left.
The foremost practitioner of chemical warfare in human history is about to bomb a country one-fifteenth its size, for its alleged use of chemical weapons. If the Bush-Cheney gang were still in power, we might see Melissa Harris-Perry and Rachel Maddow reminding us of this awful record. But there's a Democrat in the White House, so the hypocrisy detectors have been turned off and the history teachers silenced.
This is what US policy makers mean when they talk about their “right to protect” civilians in other countries.
For Black Agenda Radio I'm Bruce Dixon. Find us on the web [3].
Bruce A. Dixon is managing editor at Black Agenda Report, and a member of the state committee of the GA Green Party. Contact him via this site's contact page, or at bruce.dixon(at)


Agent Orange Vietnam Cleanup Started By U.S.

By MIKE IVES 08/09/12, Huffington Post 8-12-12
Agent Orange Vietnam
In this photo taken on Wednesday, Aug. 8, 2012, Chu Thanh Nhan,12, watches other children dance at a rehabilitation center in Danang, Vietnam. (AP Photo/Maika Elan)
DANANG, Vietnam -- The United States began a landmark project Thursday to clean up a dangerous chemical left from the defoliant Agent Orange – 50 years after American planes first sprayed it on Vietnam's jungles to destroy enemy cover.
Dioxin, which has been linked to cancer, birth defects and other disabilities, will be removed from the site of a former U.S. air base in Danang in central Vietnam. The effort is seen as a long-overdue step toward removing a thorn in relations between the former foes nearly four decades after the Vietnam War ended.
"We are both moving earth and taking the first steps to bury the legacies of our past," U.S. Ambassador David Shear said during the groundbreaking ceremony near where a rusty barbed wire fence marks the site's boundary. "I look forward to even more success to follow."
The $43 million joint project with Vietnam is expected to be completed in four years on the 19-hectare (47-acre) contaminated site, now an active Vietnamese military base near Danang's commercial airport.
Washington has been quibbling for years over the need for more scientific research to show that the herbicide caused health problems among Vietnamese. It has given about $60 million for environmental restoration and social services in Vietnam since 2007, but this is its first direct involvement in cleaning up dioxin, which has seeped into Vietnam's soil and watersheds for generations.
Shear added the U.S. is planning to evaluate what's needed for remediation at the former Bien Hoa air base in southern Vietnam, another Agent Orange hotspot.
The work begins as Vietnam and the U.S. forge closer ties to boost trade and counter China's rising influence in the disputed South China Sea that's believed rich in oil and natural resources.   [Dick: US real motives.] The U.S. says protecting peace and freedom of navigation in the sea is in its national interest.
The Danang site is closed to the public. Part of it consists of a dry field where U.S. troops once stored and mixed the defoliant before it was loaded onto planes. The area is ringed by tall grass, and a faint chemical scent could be smelled Thursday.
The contaminated area also includes lakes and wetlands dotted with pink lotus flowers where dioxin has seeped into soil and sediment over decades. A high concrete wall separates it from nearby communities and serves as a barrier to fishing there.

The U.S. military dumped some 20 million gallons (75 million liters) of Agent Orange and other herbicides on about a quarter of former South Vietnam between 1962 and 1971, decimating about 5 million acres (2 million hectares) of forest – roughly the size of Massachusetts.
The war ended on April 30, 1975, when northern Communist forces seized control of Saigon, the U.S.-backed capital of former South Vietnam. Some 58,000 Americans died, along with an estimated 3 million Vietnamese. The country was then reunified under a one-party Communist government. Following years of poverty and isolation, Vietnam shook hands with the U.S. in 1995 and normalized diplomatic relations.
The Agent Orange issue has continued to blight the U.S.-Vietnam relationship because dioxin can linger in the environment for decades, entering the food supply through the fat of fish and other animals.
Although the chemical remains at the Danang site, U.S. officials said Thursday that containment measures implemented in recent years temporarily ended the public health threat to the local community.
In 2007, Vietnamese authorities – with technical assistance from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and funding from the nonprofit U.S.-based Ford Foundation – poured a 6-inch (15-cm) concrete slab half the size of a football field over the contaminated area where Agent Orange was mixed. Dioxin is not water-soluble and only spreads when rainfall and runoff move contaminated mud.
Vietnam's Ministry of Defense and the U.S. now plan to excavate 73,000 cubic meters (2.5 million cubic feet) employing technology used to clean superfund sites in the U.S.
Workers will first dig down about 2 meters (6.56 feet). The soil will then be heated to 335 degrees Celsius (635 Fahrenheit) in special containers where the dioxin will break down into oxygen, carbon dioxide and other substances that pose no health risks.
Vietnam's deputy defense minister, Nguyen Chi Vinh, said Thursday he hopes to receive more support from the international community and the U.S. government to help remediate dioxin hotspots elsewhere.
The former U.S. air base in southern Phu Cat has already been identified, but he said many contaminated areas in Vietnam have not been adequately assessed.
It is still unclear how much dioxin the U.S. will help clean up in the long term and how much it will allocate for people who claim to be Agent Orange victims.
Story reported in ADG 8-10-12, “U.S. to Scrub Dioxin from Vietnam Base.”

A warning sign stands in a field contaminated with dioxin near Danang airport, during a ceremony marking the start of a project to clean up dioxin left over from the Vietnam War, at a former U.S. military base in Danang, Vietnam Thursday Aug. 9, 2012. The sign reads; "Dioxin contamination zone - livestock, poultry and fishery operations not permitted." (AP Photo/Maika Elan)

Agent Orange, United States Military Veterans, And Myelodysplastic Syndrome

Mon Oct 22, 2012 12:09 pm (PDT) . Posted by:

"Chuck Palazzo" chuck_pal

Agent Orange, United States Military Veterans, And Myelodysplastic Syndromes
 Chuck Palazzo   Agent Orange Action Group
Hoa Binh Chapter, Veterans For Peace



Hypocrite Central: U.S., Britain and Israel have Used Chemical Weapons within the Last 10 Years

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Those condemning Syria have themselves recently used chemical weapons.
August27, 2013
We condemn all use of chemical weapons.
U.S. sprayed Agent Orange during the Vietnam War.
U.S. sprayed Agent Orange during the Vietnam War.
But the U.S. used chemical weapons against civilians in Iraq in 2004. Evidence here, here, here, here,here, here.
Israeli also used white phosphorousin 2009 during “Operation Cast Lead” (and perhaps subsequently).  Israel ratified Protocol III of Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons (“Protocol III”) – which outlaws the use of incendiary devices in war – in 2007. So this was a war crime.
Moreover, the 1925 Geneva Protocol (which is different from Protocol III) prohibits “the use in war of asphyxiating, poisonous or other gases”.
The use of White phosphorus (“WP”) may also be a war crime under other international treaties and domestic U.S. laws. For example, the Battle Book, published by the U.S. Command and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, contains the following sentence: “It is against the law of land warfare to employ WP against personnel targets.”
Indeed, it is interesting to note that the U.S. previously called white phosphorous a chemical weapon when Saddam used it against the Kurds.  Interestingly, it has just come out that the U.S.encouraged Saddam’s use of chemical weapons.
Moreover, the U.S. and Britain have been dropping depleted uranium in virtually every country they fight, which causes severe health problems. See this, this, this and this.
University of California at Irvine professor of Middle Eastern history Mark LeVine writes:
Not only did the US aid the use of chemical weapons by the former Iraqi government, it also used chemical weapons on a large scale during its 1991 and 2003 invasions of Iraq, in the form of depleted-uranium (DU) ammunition.
As Dahr Jamail’s reporting for Al Jazeera has shown, the use of DU by the US and UK has very likely been the cause not only of many cases of Gulf War Syndrome suffered by Iraq war veterans, but also of thousands of instances of birth defects, cancer and other diseases – causing a “large-scale public health disaster” and the “highest rate of genetic damage in any population ever studied” – suffered by Iraqis in areas subjected to frequent and intense attacks by US and allied occupation forces.
And Israel has been accused of using depleted uranium in Syria.
Two wrongs don’t make a right.  But it is hypocritical for the U.S., Britain and Israel to say that we should bomb Syria because the government allegedly used chemical weapons.
Note: The U.S. sprayed nearly 20,000,000 gallons of material containing chemical herbicides and defoliants mixed with jet fuel in Vietnam, eastern Laos and parts of Cambodia. Vietnam estimates 400,000 people were killed or maimed, and 500,000 children born with birth defects as a result of its use.   The Red Cross of Vietnam estimates that up to 1 million people are disabled or have health problems due to Agent Orange. But that was some 50 years ago.
This article was posted: Tuesday, August 27, 2013 at 8:02 pm

Related Articles

·                     Israel Threatens Syria Intervention Over Chemical Weapons

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History lesson: When the United States looked the other way on chemical weapons
Posted by Glenn Kessler at 06:02 AM ET, 09/04/2013

(Carolyn Kaster/AP)
“People say, ‘Well, he killed 100,000 people. What’s the difference with this 1,400?’ With this 1,400, he crossed a line with using chemical weapons. President Obama did not draw the red line. Humanity drew it decades ago, 170-some countries supporting the convention on not using chemicals -- chemical warfare.”
-- House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), Sept. 3, 2013
One of the administration’s main arguments for attacking Syria is because the government crossed an important line by using chemical weapons against its own people.
Rep. Nancy Pelosi, a strong supporter of military strikes, echoed that argument on Tuesday. She noted that as far back as 1925, nearly 40 nations had joined together to ban the first use of chemical weapons when the Geneva Protocol was signed. (Her mention of 170 countries appears to refer to the 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention, which seeks to prohibit the production of chemical weapons and mandates their destruction; Syria has refused to sign the treaty, though 189 other countries have signed it.)
Such treaties generally do not have mechanisms for enforcement. As far as we know, no nation has ever attacked another to punish it for the use of chemical weapons, so Obama’s request is unprecedented.
Indeed, Syria’s chemical weapons stockpile results from a never-acknowledged gentleman’s agreement in the Middle East that as long as Israel had nuclear weapons, Syria’s pursuit of chemical weapons would not attract much public acknowledgement or criticism. (The Fact Checker, when serving as The Washington Post’s diplomatic correspondent, learned of this secret arrangement from Middle Eastern and Western diplomats, but it was never officially confirmed.) These are the sorts of trade-offs that happen often in diplomacy. After all, Israel’s nuclear stockpile has never been officially acknowledged, and Syria in the 1980s and 1990s was often supportive of U.S. interests in the region, even nearly reaching a peace deal with Israel.
But there is an even more striking instance of the United States ignoring use of the chemical weapons that killed tens of thousands of people -- during the grinding Iraq-Iran war in the 1980s. As documented in 2002 by Washington Post reporter Michael Dobbs, the Reagan administration knew full well it was selling materials to Iraq that was being used for the manufacture of chemical weapons, and that Iraq was using such weapons, but U.S. officials were more concerned about whether Iran would win rather than how Iraq might eke out a victory. Dobbs noted that Iraq’s chemical weapons’ use was “hardly a secret, with the Iraqi military issuing this warning in February 1984: ”The invaders should know that for every harmful insect, there is an insecticide capable of annihilating it . . . and Iraq possesses this annihilation insecticide.”
As Dobbs wrote:
A review of thousands of declassified government documents and interviews with former policymakers shows that U.S. intelligence and logistical support played a crucial role in shoring up Iraqi defenses against the “human wave” attacks by suicidal Iranian troops. The administrations of Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush authorized the sale to Iraq of numerous items that had both military and civilian applications, including poisonous chemicals and deadly biological viruses, such as anthrax and bubonic plague .
To prevent an Iraqi collapse, the Reagan administration supplied battlefield intelligence on Iranian troop buildups to the Iraqis, sometimes through third parties such as Saudi Arabia. The U.S. tilt toward Iraq was enshrined in National Security Decision Directive 114 of Nov. 26, 1983, one of the few important Reagan era foreign policy decisions that still remains classified. According to former U.S. officials, the directive stated that the United States would do “whatever was necessary and legal” to prevent Iraq from losing the war with Iran.
The presidential directive was issued amid a flurry of reports that Iraqi forces were using chemical weapons in their attempts to hold back the Iranians. In principle, Washington was strongly opposed to chemical warfare, a practice outlawed by the 1925 Geneva Protocol. In practice, U.S. condemnation of Iraqi use of chemical weapons ranked relatively low on the scale of administration priorities, particularly compared with the all-important goal of preventing an Iranian victory.
Thus, on Nov. 1, 1983, a senior State Department official, Jonathan T. Howe, told Secretary of State George P. Shultz that intelligence reports showed that Iraqi troops were resorting to “almost daily use of CW” against the Iranians. But the Reagan administration had already committed itself to a large-scale diplomatic and political overture to Baghdad, culminating in several visits by the president’s recently appointed special envoy to the Middle East, Donald H. Rumsfeld.
In 1988, Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein ordered chemical weapons attacks against Kurdish resistance forces, but the relationship with Iraq at the time was deemed too important to rupture over the matter. The United States did not even impose sanctions.
Without much apparent irony, two decades later Rumsfeld and other members of the then George W. Bush administration repeatedly cited Hussein’s use of chemical weapons against own people as a justification for invading Iraq. (Pelosi spokesman Drew Hammill did not respond to questions about her views on how the Reagan administration handled the Iraqi situation.)
For interested readers, we have embedded below an English translation of the French intelligence report on the alleged chemical weapons attack last month because it includes a history of the Syrian chemical weapons program. . . .

    Resistance & Tear Gas in the Air
War Resisters League via   July 27, 2012
to jbennet
A lot is in the air --resistance, solidarity,  repression—and tear gas.
All around the world, where we see people coming together and insisting on their rights, we see clouds of tear gas. I’m writing to tell you about War Resisters League’s exciting—and winnable!—campaign against tear gas (see video and  increased militarization of police forces everywhere and to urge you to help that campaign achieve its goals.

I was one of thousands gassed in the streets of Seattle in '99 World Trade Organization protests during our successful nonviolent direct action to keep delegates from meeting. In '01 I was in Québec City protesting the forging of a colossal free-trade agreement. Despite the police's onslaught of tear gas and concussion grenades protesters held their ground for a few days and nights. So much gas filled the city air that the meeting was shut down because even the participants couldn’t breathe!

Our protests can become inspiring victories. But those against whom we protest do their best to exact a price. The horrible feelings of choking on my own breath, of burning eyes and face, of watching my friends endure the same has haunted me and I am sure rumors that it causes permanent physiological damage have had a chilling effect on many a conscientious person.

In response to the many global uprisings, militarized police everywhere increasingly use these U.S.-made gasses in more and more brutal ways. A crowd assembles; people are made to choke; some are smashed in the face or head by canisters fired at them, sometimes fatally. Protesters share vinegar-soaked rags and hear each others' frightening stories. This is a crowd that can't really be dispersed, but can only grow—and WRL’s anti-tear gas campaign can nurture its growth.

Through storytelling and direct action,     WRL and our allies will work to expose the companies profiting from these repressive tools and to put grassroots pressure on the State Department to comply with U.S. law barring the use of U.S. weapons by regimes perpetrating human rights violations.

What makes this a winnable campaign is its discrete target—one relatively small tool of militarism. This type of public pressure was effective in stopping the sale of U.S. teargas in Bahrain. We can make one of the world’s biggest purveyors of these (and other) weapons obey its own laws; we can decrease use of tear gas against the rising tide of resistance worldwide—

But only with your help! You can view and share with others the tear gas stories on our tumblr and contribute your own story. Please make a financial contribution so that our organizers can produce the materials and reach enough people to help end the dirty business that is tear gas.

Thanks in advance, and keep on resisting.
Sky Hall
P.S. See stories about people's experiences with tear gas all over the world. For more information, send an email to

The U.S. corporate link to police violence in Quebec
This week, the Québec movement sparked by students striking against tuition hikes is ramping up the pressure again, as some schools start class today and "Law 12" is mandating that students attend. The response of the movement has been "Back to Class Means Back to Strike!" As people in the thousands have joined the strikes, protesters have faced huge amounts of police repression, supported in part by US-based corporations.
Defense Technology,   headquartered in Casper, Wyoming, produces the tear gas used against the Quebec movement. This manufacturer is a subsidiary of  Safariland, now owned by prominent war profiteer Warren B. Kanders, based in Southern Connecticut (though the sale was held up by the sentencing of a former Safariland exec for bribing government officials in Europe, Africa, and the Middle East in order to secure business). Safariland holds monthly trainings for cops, prison officers, private security personnel, and active-duty soldiers across the U.S. on how to use this Chemical Weapon.
Defense Technology tear gas has also been used against Occupy Oakland, the ongoing Yemeni movement for change, Palestinians in East Jerusalem, as well as against protesters in Egypt, Bahrain and Tunisia. In addition, between 3,000-5,000 canisters of Safariland tear gas were used against protesters at the 2001 Summit of the Americas in Quebec City.
For updates and action alerts on tear gas use in Quebec and around the world, sign up on our e-mail list,   and for more on WRL's storytelling project and campaign against tear gas visit:
How did the movement in Quebec begin?
In March, the Jean Charest government in Quebec announced a 75% tuition hike for all public university students.
In Quebec, many of the current university students are first generation college students. Most of them are working their way through college—a dramatic tuition hike means taking on a second job or enormous amounts of debt.

Many students decided to go on strike—abstaining from attending their universities en masse to protest the hikes. Students pinned red squares to their lapels—or wore them as earrings or face paint—taking to the streets, demanding to negotiate to end the tuition hikes...
When it became undeniable that the students were serious, the now notorious Montreal Police (SPVM) began implementing the Emergency “Law 78”—a law that actively criminalized unannounced gatherings of more than 50 people.
Law 78 transformed what was once a student strike into a popular movement. Solidarity actions erupted throughout the world. Though to others a $1,625 tuition hike seemed cheap in comparison to other attacks on public education, police repression and criminalizing of the people’s voice was something that echoed throughout the world.
On the last nights in May, more than 400,000 marched through the streets of Montréal.
Read more of this story on the War Resisters League Blog.


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1 day ago - President Obama´s Secretary of State John Kerry has said that the US condemns the use of chemical weapons. In order for this statement to be ...

3.                             Breathtaking U.S. Hypocrisy on Chemical Weapons | Washington's ...
1 day ago - The U.S. encouraged Saddam Hussein's use of chemical weaponsagainst Iran … which was the largest use of chemical weapons in history.

4.                             United States and weapons of mass destruction - Wikipedia, the free ...
Jump to Chemical weapons disposal - According to the U.S. Army Chemical Materials Agency by ... The U.S. also uses mobile treatment systems to treat ...

5.                              Bombshell: Syria's 'chemical weapons' turn out to be sodium fluoride days ago - According to U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, any government “regime” that uses chemical weapons against its own people should be ...

6.                          Russia skeptical on Syria chemical weapon use, doesn't rule out ...

23 hours ago - ... strike on Syria if there's proof that the regime used chemical weapons. ... The United States and other Western nations blame the Assad ...

7.                          Russia Dismisses U.S. Evidence of Chemical-Weapons Use by ...
3 days ago - The war of words between the Kremlin and the White House over Syria showed no sign of abating, as Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov ...

8.                             France releases intelligence report alleging Syrian chemical ...
23 hours ago - PARISFrance released an intelligence report on Monday alleging chemical weapons use by Syria's regime that dovetailed with similar U.S. ...

9.                             Klein: Why Do We Even Care About Syria's Chemical Weapons?
10 hours ago - But the U.S. is not considering military action to save them. ...When Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein used chemical weapons against Iran in the ...
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Dick's Wars and Warming KPSQ Radio Editorials (#1-48)

Dick's Wars and Warming KPSQ Radio Editorials (#1-48)