Agent orange in Vietnam - Yesterday’s Crime, Today’s Tragedy

Dernier ajout : 18 octobre 2008.

Association d’Amitié Franco-Vietnamienne
(Franco-Vietnamese Friendship Association)

Agent Orange in Vietnam

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Spray plane

Yesterday’s Crime, Today’s Tragedy

Foreword by François Gros

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ST National political Publishing House, Hanoi

10 € at AAFV
EU : 12 €, postage included
Rest of the world : 14 €, postage included

Note on the English Edition

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The Mighty-mite : an extremely powerful pump used to blow CS powder inside caves, shelters and tunnels ; almost always lethal, owing to high speed and concentration. (Drawing from the US Army antiguerilla handbook)

Three years have passed since publication of this book in French. Practical difficulties have delayed issue of this English translation, but its publication is timely. For, after interminable delays, the lawsuit filed by Vietnamese victims of Agent Orange against the companies that manufactured it has resulted in a court ruling of great injustice. The suit was dismissed by the U.S. District Court in Brooklyn, and that decision was upheld by the Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit in Manhattan.
The victims now plan to take their case to the U.S. Supreme Court in Washington. The struggle for justice continues, and it is hoped that publication of this book in English will contribute to that struggle.

The translation follows closely the original French text, even when changes have occurred, for example concerning the functions performed by some of the authors.

I wish to thank Jacques Maître, my predecessor as president of the France-Vietnam Friendship Association, Dominique de Miscault and Marie-Hélène Lavallard who have carried out the preparations for publication of this English edition.

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Hélène Luc, President
France-Vietnam Friendship Association

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Russel Tribunal Ms Pham Thi Yen’s evidence - left to right Simone de Beauvoir, Jean-Paul Sartre, Wladimir Dediger, Laurent Schwartz, 1967 (Photo John Duffett)
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Orsay International Conference, 12th -14th December, 1970, under the auspices of the FMTS (World Federation of Scientific Workers) - left to right A. Vennema, Claire Culhane, Edgar Lederer, Egbert Pfeiffer, Arthur Westing
The original edition of this work was published in French by Editions Tiresias, Paris.
With the exception of the chapters by A.H. Westing and Vo Quy, which are in the original English, all texts have been translated by Integram Traduction, Fontainebleau, France, under the supervision of Larry Litzky.

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Experimental Nursery for afforestation in Hue, 2005
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One of many landslides along the road from Hue to the A Luoi Valley, affecting the stream and rendering the road temporarily impassable.

The Vietnamese people have long fought for their freedom, their independence and their unity. Today, Vietnam is a large country with 85 million inhabitants, who live in peace, but whose development is still hindered by the consequences of Agent Orange, the dioxin-containing defoliant sprayed heavily over South Vietnam during the American war. Carried on in breach of humanitarian conventions, it was the first chemical war in history and, to date, the only one of this magnitude that the world has known.
In its time, it was a health and an environmental disaster. And it remains one today, because the effects of dioxin persist and its destructive action silently continues. The Vietnamese population has been wounded, as have its children and its environment.
This dramatic situation gives rise to many questions in humanitarian, scientific, political and juridical terms. These are set out in this book. The first part recalls the origin and the nature of the problems, while the second provides some insights into what might be done to deal with these problems in several crucial areas (environmental, health, social, legal).

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Aluoi Valley 2008

With this publication, the AAFV aims at reminding the international public of this tragedy, at creating a large solidarity movement, so that actions can be undertaken in proportion to the scale of the needs and so that the victims can at last obtain compensation. Peace cannot be established on an unpunished crime.

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map of military regions in South Vietnam
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Hau Giang Province, 2005

The Editors :
Yvonne Capdeville : Biologist at CNRS (National Center of Scientific research), Doctor in Medicine, member of the CCSTVN (Committee for Scientific and Technological Cooperation with Vietnam)
Francis Gendreau : Demographer, Research Director at IRD (Research Institute for Development), President of the AAFV
Jean Meynard : Physician, Vice-President of the Association “Vietnam, Enfants de la dioxine”

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Huynh Thi Duom, born 1989, Xa Phien village, Hau Giang Province, 2005
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handicaped woman at home, A Luoi
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Madeleine Riffaud and Henri Martin 1st October 2005, Trocadero, Paris
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Hanoi 23rd October 2005 Ms Nguyen Thi Binh with Tran Xuan Thu (VAVA) and Enzo Falcone (Care the people-Italy)