Analysis Of The Unwinnable War : A Nature Of Herbicidal Warfare

1512 Words Apr 14th, 2015 7 Pages
Christopher Nguyen
Research Paper

The Unwinnable War: A Nature of Herbicidal Warfare

Mostly consisting of thick costal mangrove, the dense forest spread high across a wet, humid plateau in the countryside of North Vietnam. For centuries its environment provided raw natural resources such as nutrient-rich soil ideal for cultivating rice and flowing streams, providing a reliable water supply to the native people of the region. Now, on a summer day in 1961, it was under attack. Following direct orders, an American Air Force pilot steers his C-123 cargo aircraft over the jungles of Vietnam. In its wake, the aircraft leaves behind a toxic cloud of 2, 4- dicholorophenoxyacetic acid and 2, 4, 5- tricholorophenoxyacetic acid, spewing from its’ cylindrical, orange- stripped, steel drum; this toxic mixture of chemical compounds would become known as the deadly herbicide, Agent Orange. The utilization of Agent Orange during the Vietnam War caused a devastating ripple-effect on Vietnam’s environment that has resulted in adverse effects to its region’s natural environment, the physical bodies of exposed civilians and wartime veterans, and the political landscape of the United States. When United States military advisors first went to South Vietnam in 1961 to delegate affairs, they noticed that much of the regions rainforest vegetation was primarily secondary growth interspersed with strands of primary forest. Upon arrival, the U.S Army analyzed the terrain of South Vietnam in…

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