Joe Miller's

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INTRODUCTION

     My name is Joe Miller. I served in Operation Desert Storm from Oct,1990 to June 1991. My involvement in this research began when I started to suffer some of the symptoms of the Gulf War Illness. Is the Persian Gulf Syndrome real? Is it contagious? Is our government going to accept responsibility? I began by questioning our government, whose track record with Tuskegee and Agent Orange speaks for itself. Although they have supplied the documents that I have requested, many questions still remain. Each time one question is answered, another one appears.
     Since registering with the Persian Gulf Registry, I have been asked by several universities that are doing research on this topic, to fill out questionnaires. Over a period of time, the questionnaires became more specific, however criteria for a definite diagnosis of Persian Gulf Syndrome has not been established. This makes it more difficult for a veteran to receive adequate treatment or compensation for all of this illness.

INVESTIGATION

     When Operation Desert Storm ended, the United Nations Special Commission on Iraq began it's investigation of the advanced chemical and biological warfare capabilities of Iraq. UNSCOM's work which continues even today, has played a critical role in determining the extent of possible exposure of US troops to chemical/biological agents during and immediately after the war. (262) PGAC pg 39.(BIBLIOGRAPHY#1)
     There were six confirmed releases/detections of CBW materials during Operation Desert Storm. Of these six, five are from known sources. The two Czech detections are of unknown origin, but that could be due to weather conditions on the date of the detection.

PGAC--------PG 41.(BIBLIOGRAPHY#1)

CZECH DETECTIONS

     The two detections made by Czech forces in Jan, 91 (northeast of Hafir Al Batin on 19 Jan, and north KKMC on 24 Jan,) are believed to be valid detections. Available Soviet documents indicate that dispersal of chemical agents and other hazardous substances is controlled by other factors in addition to surfaces wind direction and velocity. Such factors as topography, temperature, precipitation, vertical, temperature gradient, and atmospheric humidity. All these factors contribute to the size and type of dispersal that will be observed.
     The Czechs believe that the detections were caused by the weather inversion which occurred on 19 Jan, as the weather front moved southward. The two agents that were detected (nerve agent and mustard agent) indicate two possibilities;

1. (Direct Iraqi mixed agent attack or)

2. (Fallout from coalition bombing of Iraqi weapons facilities.) 103--------900--------pg 231-232.(BIBLIOGRAPHY#2)

     Visual and thermal satellite imagery confirm that fallout from the bombing of Iraqi targets during the air and ground war moved SE with weather patterns and upper atmospheric wind currents toward coalition forces.

(3)DATE 17 Jan, 1991.(BIBLIOGRAPHY#1)

     Al Muthanna---state production research, storage facility.

Location 33 50' 30 N 43 50' 30 E

      16.8 metric tons saran/cyclosarin were destroyed. Area of possible contamination--164 km/120 mile radius (32,669 square miles) (in east central Iraq and extreme eastern Iran)

(4)DATE 17 Jan, 1991.(BIBLIOGRAPHY#1)

     Al Muhammadiyat --- PGAC pg 39

Location 40 10' N 42 48' E

      2.9 metric tons - sarin/cyclosarin were destroyed 15.2 metric tons - mustard agent Area of possible contamination - 300 km / 180 mile radius (101,736 square miles) (all of central Iraq, east to Iran and west to Jordan, also parts of NW Saudi Arabbia and SE Syria)

(5) Khamisiyah (2 occurrences) PGAC pg. 43.(BIBLIOGRAPHY#1)

a) Location 30 46' N

46 26' E

8.5 metric tons - sarin/cyclosarin were destroyed Date--4 Mar, 91.(BIBLIOGRAPHY#4)

b) Location 30 44' N 46 25' E

(6)     Unknown quantity of 122 mm rockets. Date -- 10 Mar, 91 Initial exposure area was 50 mile radius, which was increased to include 150 mile radius in July, 97. This has been increased a 2nd time to a 320 mile radius in Sept. 97. (1,009,623 square miles) See maps on THE MAP HOME PAGE for Explanation.

(4)Date 29 Jan, 1991.(BIBLIOGRAPHY#9)

Tallil Airfield

Location 30 30' N 43 8' E

     This location has been confirmed as a possible release of chemical/biological weapons and is still under investigation.

image-----MARCH 1,1998-----image

     DOD concluded that it was unlikely that chemical weapons were stored at the airfield at Tallil when it was occupied by U.S. troops in the spring of 1991.U.S. Intelligent confirmed that Iraq had stocks of chemical weapons at the base in 1980 to 1988 at the time Iraq was at war with Iran. During that war Iraqi jets that bombed Iranian troops with chemical agents out of Tallil airfield. Chemical specialist inspected the bunker in March of 1991 with fox reconnaissance vehicles, with negative results but a significant amount of chemical gear was found but this was to be expected based on the history of the base. Tallil Airfield is also less then 25 miles from Khamisiyah a confirmed chemical storage site.

103 900 pg125.(BIBLIOGRAPHY#2)

AIR WAR

     Little information is available concerning the methods used by military commanders to destroy Iraqi chemical/biological facilities, other than NBC-1 reports that were given to the Senate Banking Committee in 1994 as examples of air strikes against Iraqi targets. These strikes consisted of 32 one thousand pound bombs, dropped on each of 26 known Iraqi targets. The explosion on one of these targets was equivalent to 16 times the explosives used in Oklahoma City on the Alfred P. Murrah Building.
     Military grade explosives would be of a much higher quality than those used in Oklahoma City. Sixty percent commercial dynamite explodes at the rate of 19,000 feet per second. Military grade TNT explodes at a rate of 22,600 feet per second. Military grade C-4 explodes at a rate of 26,400 feet per second, and is considered state of the art (Benson, pg. vii). The actual type and amount of explosives used in each bomb, as well as the fusing system, is classified information.

(BIBLIOGRAPHY#10)

     The burst radius of a 1,000-lb bomb is approx. 1/2 to 3/4 of mile. The cloud height is 2-3x blast radius, and could be up to 7,000-9,000 feet. The fallout will travel in the direction of prevailing winds until it dissipates, in the case of a vaporous agent or falls back to earth in the form of dirt, sand, and other objects heavier than air.
     It is standard US doctrine that chemical and biological agents can not be used together because the chemical agents will destroy the biological agents when mixed. Recent research indicates that this may not be true. We do know that heat and time break down these chemical weapons. The intensity and duration of heat better insure the destruction of these chemical/biological weapons. This may account for the use of such a large amount of explosives used at each Iraqi target.
     The objectives of our military commanders in the theater of operations was not to allow the weapons to be used in an offensive or defensive manner against coalition forces. Had these weapons been used in their intended manner, casualties would have been in the thousands. Instead, what we have is theatre wide contamination at vary low levels which may or may not result in health problems over the period of a lifetime, for the soldiers involved. Diagnosis and treatment of these health problems will be very difficult and time consuming for medical personnel, and very frustrating for the soldiers and their families. The absence of specific agents and dose rates further complicates this situation.
     The problem we see in the KTO is one of accidental release of unknown amounts of both chemical and biological weapons. There was no real time biological detection system available during Desert Storm therefore the US cannot say for sure that biological were not used.

(BIBLIOGRAPHY#5)

IRAQI CAPABILITIES

     We knew before the war that Iraq had and was willing to use these weapons if allowed to do so. They had weaponized Anthrax and Botulinem. We did not know until after the war ended that they had also weaponized aflatoxin. Clostridium botulinum and Bacillus anthracis are known agents and have immediate life threatening effects. GAO P.62) DOD record-keeping was not very good, we do know that there were no outbreaks of these specific diseases, and only one soldier was admitted to a military hospital with anthrax.

(BIBLIOGRAPHY#1)

     Aflatoxin is a potent liver carcinogen. The effects of this agent are not noticeable for years or decades after exposure. The effects of aerosolized aflatoxin are poorly understood. Aflatoxin's most noticeable effect is liver cancer several years following exposure. GAO p.62. Aflatoxin is of little use tactically as a military weapon because it does not immediately incapacitate the enemy force. It could, however, be used as a weapon if time was not of concern, and hope of winning a conventional war had been eliminated. (Approximately 98.27% of American soldiers exposure to chemical in World War 1, did not die soon after exposure, but lived on with residual ailments.)
     Without the use of a real time biological detection system, the US can't say for sure that these weapons were not used. UNSAOM has been unable to confirm Iraq's self-declared destruction of it's biological weapons, therefore we cannot be certain that they were destroyed.

(BIBLIOGRAPHY#7)

Nicolson Therapy

     Drs. Garth and Nancy Nicolson of the Institute for Molecular Medicine in Huntington Beach, CA have detected what they think is a synthetic, biological agent in blood samples of Gulf Veterans, micro plasma appear in approximately 56% of veterans tested. These mycoplasmas contain some very unusual DNA sequences that are not found in the wild and could be artificially created. Detailed information on these mycoplasmas as well as blood test and treatment for these infections is available through the Institute for Molecular Medicine in Huntington Beach, CA.
     As of this date, these blood tests and treatments are still not standard practice and isn't available through military or VA facilities. The test can be done for $350.00, and the treatment consists of multiple courses of the antibiotic doxycycline.
     According to Dr. Garth Nicolson's research, these mycoplasmas have had part of the envelope gene of the HIV-1 virus inserted, and is virtually undetectable without sensitive specialized lab testing, i.e.. nucleoprotein gene tracking.
     As of Dec. 97, doctors from Walter Reed Army Medical Center has agreed to work with Dr. Nicolson to develop a criteria for evaluation of his research, for possible use in government facilities.

(BIBLIOGRAPHY#7)

Exposure Research 1996

     The Nicolson's research was not available at the time of the Gulf War, and was not developed until 1995. It is still considered to be experimental in some cases. I have personally had the blood test performed and received a positive result of micro plasma in blood leukocytes.
     Another research project that should be taken into consideration has been completed at the University of Texas, Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas. Dr. Robert W. Haley believes that veterans may be suffering from delayed chronic neurotoxic effects caused by wartime exposure to chemicals and chemical combinations. These chemicals and/or their combination(s) seem to inhabit the enzymes produced in the nervous system to provide movement.

(BIBLIOGRAPHY#8)

     Dr. Haley refers to these effects as three separate syndromes, as follows:

     *Syndrome #1-Impaired Cognition-characterized by distractibility, memory loss, depression, insomnia and fatigue, slurring of speech, confused thought press and migraine like headaches.
     *Syndrome #2-Confusion ATOXIA- characterized by problems in the thinking and reasoning process, which are shown in reading, writing, or spelling difficulties. Other symptoms are confusion, disorientation, and balance problems, depression, liver disease and sexual impotence. People with this syndrome may receive a diagnosis of Post Dramatic Stress Disorder.
     *Syndrome #3-Arthro My Neuropthy- characterized by generalized joint and muscle pain, difficulty lifting, fatigue and tingling and numbness in the feet.
     Dr. Haley suggested that most of the above symptoms could be explained by varying combinations of injury of the brain, spinal core and/or nervous system (i.e. ...nerve agent poisoning).
     Dr. Haley's research is published in the January 15 (1997) edition of the Journal of American Medical Association, along with several other articles of interest to Persian Gulf Veterans. This publication should be available at your local public library. In addition, his article was reviewed by other members of the medical community in the August 6th (1997) edition of the same magazine.

(BIBLIOGRAPHY#8)

LEGAL-LAW SUITS

PITTS AND ASSOCIATES

     A civil suit has been filed by Pitts and Associates of Houston, TX representing a group of Gulf War veterans. They are seeking compensation from an assortment of US and foreign companies who were responsible for the production and sale of these toxins. It is impossible to predict when this case may be settled. Because of the great number of people currently involved in this suit, it will probably take years. As of this date, case certification as a class action suit is still being pursued.

(BIBLIOGRAPHY#6)

     What we need to do, as veterans, is to begin a dialog with Veterans Administration and with the Department of Defense, whether we agree with them or not. Collaborating testimonies from multiple veterans would give our individual accounts more credibility. As veterans who were on site in the theatre of operations, we are the sources of information available.
     {The first step in a course of action would be to go to the VA for a physical examination, establish treatment record and file claims. The next steps would be to make your individual situation known to our state and government officials. We must stand up and be counted, as individuals, and as a group.}
     AFTER READING THE ABOVE INFORMATION, I WOULD APPRECIATE YOUR ASSISTANCE RESEARCHING AFLOTOXIN. Following are some of my specific questions:

1) What exactly is Aflotoxin (i.e. what does it consist of)?

image-----MARCH 1,1998-----image

    Aflatoxin is a carcinogen or cancer causing agent in it's mildest forms. It is very similar to A.T.A. or alimentar toxic alukia. It is basically a toxin or better a combination of toxins produced by molds naturally occurring on peanuts, corn and other similar grains. It was first discovered in the 1930's after thousands upon thousands of deaths occurred in the famine stricken northern Russia. The starving people were eating food made with grain that had grown a fine brown mold over its surface. The symptoms in humans were of interest to Russian scientists and were studied. The toxins were refined to produce a chemical weapon known to the western world as Yellow Rain. Symptoms of Aflatoxin poisoning are as follows:
1)      Minutes after ingesting or absorbing the toxin through the skin, the victim begins to burn in all effected areas. It works quickly on mucous membranes causing surface hemorrhages. A hemorrhagic rash spreads within one hour to all external soft tissues. There is a rapid onslaught of internal bleeding. There is also violent headaches, dizziness, vertigo, weakness, fatigue, fever, sweating angina, neurological tremors, spasms and in the last stages, very violent convulsions. Blood pressure falls. Bleeding becomes heavy in the intestines and all the vital organs and glands, especially the adrenal and thyroid glands. The lungs gush with blood and fill quickly. The heart begins to fail as the bleeding advances to the liver, kidneys, and central nervous system. Finally the ganglia and brain begin to bleed freely. There is quick and severe damage to bone marrow and the hemoglobin count drops to about 8% of normal. In the body to include the eyes. Death follows quickly. These symptoms may come about in hours or minutes, depending on the dosage. A very mild dosage can cause a variety of symptoms over a long period of time.
2)      Would the tests be utilized for colensteres inhibitors, used commercially to detect pesticide poisoning, be affective in detecting the chemical residue or agents in the veteran's system?

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BIBLIOGRAPHY Source
#1


Presidential Advisory Committee on
Gulf War Vet, Illnesses Report 31 Dec,1996
#2


Senate Hearing #103 900
Committee on Banking, Housing
and Urban Affairs,
U.S. Senate, Report Oct.7,1994
#3

Homemade C-4 Recipe for Survival
Ragnor Benson
Paladin Paess 1990
#4

Persian Gulf Review
Vol,5 No,1 Dec,1996
#5

United States General Accounting
Office Wash., D C June 1997
Report to Chairmen of
Senate Armed Services Committee
#6

Attorney Client Communication
Pitt and Assoc. Dec.21,1996
Houston TX.
#7

Institute for Molecular Medicine
Huntington Beach CA. 92649-0141
#8

Journal of American Medicine
Robert W Holey M.D.
Jan,1997 Vol 277
#9

Gulf News
Falls Church VA.
#10

U.S. Army
Special Forces Book
on Military Bomb Fusing
and Explosives (US SF AB classified 1968)

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