April 21st, 2024

Maine questions Canadian study of Agent Orange use at New Brunswick military base

By The Canadian Press on March 4, 2024.

A tank is shown at CFB Gagetown, near Oromocto, N.B., on Monday, April 9, 2007. A recently released Maine legislative commission report says a Canadian study into the use of herbicides, including Agent Orange, in a southern New Brunswick military training ground was flawed. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Andrew Vaughan

FREDERICTON – Maine’s state legislature says it has found flaws in a Canadian study on the use of the herbicide Agent Orange in the 1960s on a southern New Brunswick military base.

A report released in January by a legislature commission says the potential links between health problems and the use of Agent Orange at Canadian Forces Base Gagetown need to be re-evaluated.

It says a new investigation would help United States veterans access medical care if they had worked at the base, where in 1966 and 1967 the American military tested defoliants such as Agent Orange.

A 2005 study by the Defence Department and other Canadian government agencies found that herbicide levels used at the Gagetown base posed no risk to human health.

But the Maine commission says it gathered testimony that criticized the methods used to collect evidence in the Canadian study.

Herbicides such as Agent Orange were used extensively in the 1960s by the American military during the Vietnam War to destroy crops of the Viet cong and North Vietnamese, and the U.S. Veterans Affairs Department has recognized certain cancers are associated with exposure to those chemicals.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 4, 2024.

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