According to the Pentagon, the U.S. military carried out tests of chemical and biological agents on 6,440 of its own personnel between 1962 and 1973. One Navy veteran who participated in some of those tests is now pushing for recognition and benefits, having learned that more than half of his fellow seamen are either dead or stricken with cancer or other illnesses.
AP via Google:
WASHINGTON—Jack Alderson was ordered never to talk about the secret weapons tests he helped conduct in the Pacific during the 1960s. He kept quiet for decades.
Sparse attendance at a 1993 reunion prompted Alderson, a retired Navy Reserve lieutenant commander, to speak out. He learned that more than half of the 500 or so crew members who took part in the tests were either dead or suffering from cancer, respiratory problems or other ailments. Alderson wondered whether his own skin cancers, allergies and chronic fatigue were linked to those tests or were simply the result of aging.
“I was told by my bosses and the docs and so forth that if you follow these routines ... you’re going to be OK,” Alderson, 74, said in an interview. “We did exactly as told. And we’re finding out now that we’re sick.”