Gulf War Syndrome:
Aftermath of a Toxic Battlefield
and Directed by Alison Johnson
A Johnson/Startzman Film
Post-Production CineVision Productions
2000 60 minutes
|"More than 100,000 of the American
forces who fought in the Gulf War returned home suffering from a
variety of illnesses and to a nation indifferent to their problems.
It was a war fought in a cesspool of toxic agents. These veterans
are the delayed and forgotten casualties of Desert Shield/Desert
Storm. Producer Alison Johnson has successfully captured on film
the plight and pain of these heroes."
Shays (R-CT) Chairman of the Subcommittee on National Security,
Veterans Affairs, and International Relations.
Large numbers of soldiers
who risked their lives in the Persian Gulf have developed Gulf War syndrome.
Some must use canes or wheelchairs; others are struggling with devastating
illnesses like lupus or Lou Gehrig’s disease. Veterans’ symptoms include
severe and frequent headaches, debilitating fatigue, muscle and joint
pains, memory problems, asthma, chronic diarrhea, and loss of bladder
and rectal control. Their chronic health problems and the extreme sensitivity
they have developed to common, everyday chemicals make it difficult
or impossible for them to work.
explores the principal toxic exposures soldiers faced:
- Low levels of sarin and other nerve gases
released from the bombing of Iraqi chemical weapons factories and
the destruction of bunkers like Khamisiyah where these weapons were
- PB pills, themselves
quite toxic, given to soldiers in an effort to protect them from nerve
- Smoke and soot from
hundreds of oil well fires
- Excessive use of pesticides
- Radioactive dust from
depleted uranium munitions
- Anthrax and other
vaccines given in a compressed time frame