By Carey Wedler
Though the United States’ ruling establishment points fingers at other governments — namely the current Syrian regime — for allegedly using chemical weapons, the American military has a history of using this vicious ammunition on its own soldiers – and fifty years later, the Pentagon is reserving its right to keep the details secret.
Between 1962 and 1974, during the Vietnam War era, the Pentagon tested nerve agents like Sarin gas and Vx and bacteria like E.Coli on as many as 6,000 military personnel in “Project 112” and SHAD (Shipboard Hazard and Defense). Most of the military members exposed to the chemical and biological weapons were in the Army and Navy, and according to McClatchy D.C., “The purpose was to identify any weaknesses to U.S. ships and troops and develop a response plan for a chemical attack.”
The outlet reported this week that though news of these practices first emerged in 2000, the Pentagon released only limited data on the tests at the request of the Department of Veterans Affairs. In the years since, the VA has commissioned studies by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine to investigate the tests’ effects.
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