2005 CPEO Military List Archive

From: "Lau, Kristen" <klau@hgl.com>
Date: 1 Nov 2005 17:21:35 -0000
Reply: cpeo-military
Subject: RE: [CPEO-MEF] Offshore chemical weapons dumps
-----Original Message-----
From: Lau, Hartmut H Mr HQDA DCS G-3/5/7
Sent: Tuesday, November 01, 2005 11:34 AM
To: Lau, Kristen
Subject: RE: [CPEO-MEF] Offshore chemical weapons dumps (UNCLASSIFIED)
Classification:  UNCLASSIFIED
Caveats: NONE

I don't know that this is news - "the Army now admits" is misleading,
since it implies the Army once denied.

WWI took place from 1914 to 1918 and attitudes toward methods men used
to kill each other - and toward hazardious waste disposal and toward
record keeping (not to mention what we now call environmental issues)
were very very different than they are today. Chemical weapons were used
extensively starting in 1915.  If you're going to use them, you have to
develop and manufacture and transport them and then dispose the ones you
didn't fire along the front lines. A lot of them were developed and
tested in real estate that is now known as American University Park in
DC, and clean-up efforts have been going on there since the
contamination was discovered.
Apparently, a lot of them were disposed of in various ways that wouldn't
pass muster today.

I'm not sure where "I hope the military will quit denying and avoiding
these ugly truths and act responsible" comes from. The Army Chemical
Corps is very much involved with (developing ways to safely dispose of
old chemical weapons and then doing it) since at least when I was last
in the Pentagon (1981-1983) and, most likely, well before that. I don't
remember when the disposal facility at Johnson Island went into
operation. The US renounced chemical weapons sometime in the Nixon
administration and I would guess that the safe disposal efforts began to
increase about then.

I'm also not sure what "quit wasting time and money arguing about
assessments" is supposed to mean. After all, if you don't do a really
good assessment, what are the chances of being successful in a safe
disposal/destruction effort? Records no longer exist (assuming there
ever were records) so it's not only a matter of where things might be,
but of what sort of chemicals (and what chemical changes have occurred
in the last 90 years or so) are in those old, rusty containers.

Anyway - cleaning up is the right thing to do and hopefully the Congress
will appropriate the necessary dollars.

-----Original Message-----
From: military-bounces@list.cpeo.org
[mailto:military-bounces@list.cpeo.org] On Behalf Of Stella Bourassa
Sent: Tuesday, November 01, 2005 7:47 AM
To: lsiegel@cpeo.org; Military Environmental Forum
Subject: Re: [CPEO-MEF] Offshore chemical weapons dumps

Much gratitude to those who found out this 'ugly secret' about the Army
I know other branches have/do the same.  Ask any Navy personnel what
'dumped over the side' of their ships out at sea!

I hope the military will quit denying and avoiding these ugly truths and
responsible - that is all I believe the public has asked for-honesty,
integrity and 'cleaning up the mess they and the government created.  Am
wrong?  This is not just about the 'military' but also our government
it's time they both took responsibility.  It is only logical that as
'dumped secretly' out in our seas that they have done the same to lands
practiced on.

To our military and government officials-please quit wasting time and
arguing about assessments, please quit avoiding these ugly truths and
so-please quit trying to 'get rid of the lands polluted'.  Keep them and
clean them up and do 'no more harm'.  It took 'how many years' for the
environmental damage to occur?  Take 'at least' that much time, 'suck it
and just start cleaning up the mess already.  Enough damage has been
there is enough danger to contend with-do not 'pass it on' to those
unlearned and unsuspecting - an ugly truth is always better than a


----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Lenny Siegel" <lsiegel@cpeo.org>
To: "Military Environmental Forum" <military@list.cpeo.org>
Sent: Sunday, October 30, 2005 8:43 PM
Subject: [CPEO-MEF] Offshore chemical weapons dumps

> SPECIAL REPORT: The Deadliness Below
> Weapons of mass destruction thrown into the sea years ago present
> now - and the Army doesn't know where they all are.
> Newport News Daily Press (VA)
> October 30, 2005
> In the summer of 2004, a clam-dredging operation off New Jersey pulled
> up an old artillery shell.
> The long-submerged World War I-era explosive was filled with a black
> tarlike substance.
> Bomb disposal technicians from Dover Air Force Base, Del., were
> in to dismantle it. Three of them were injured - one hospitalized with
> large pus-filled blisters on an arm and hand.
> The shell was filled with mustard gas in solid form.
> What was long feared by the few military officials in the know had
> to pass: Chemical weapons that the Army dumped at sea decades ago
> finally ended up on shore in the United States.
> It's long been known that some chemical weapons went into the ocean,
> records obtained by the Daily Press show that the previously
> weapons-dumping program was far more extensive than ever suspected.
> The Army now admits that it secretly dumped 64 million pounds of nerve
> and mustard agents into the sea, along with 400,000 chemical-filled
> bombs, land mines and rockets and more than 500 tons of radioactive
> waste - either tossed overboard or packed into the holds of scuttled
> ...
> For the entire article, see
> See also
> http://www.dailypress.com/news/dp-02762sy0oct30,0,2788825.story
> -- 
> Lenny Siegel
> Director, Center for Public Environmental Oversight
> c/o PSC, 278-A Hope St., Mountain View, CA 94041
> Voice: 650/961-8918 or 650/969-1545
> Fax: 650/961-8918
> <lsiegel@cpeo.org>
> http://www.cpeo.org
> _______________________________________________
> Military mailing list
> Military@list.cpeo.org
> http://www.cpeo.org/mailman/listinfo/military

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