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May 19, 2024 4:13 pm

What does the US owe Iraq for the military’s toxic burn pits?

The United States military used toxic burn pits to dispose of waste during the Iraq War, and now there are growing calls for the US to address the health and environmental impacts of this practice. Many veterans and Iraqis have suffered from respiratory issues, cancers, and other health problems as a result of exposure to the pits.

According to a recent report by NBC News, the US government has not done enough to address the health and environmental impacts of the burn pits. The report notes that the US has acknowledged the problem and established a registry for those affected, but has not taken more concrete steps to address the issue.

In response to the report, veterans and advocates are calling on the US government to take responsibility and provide compensation to those affected by the burn pits. Many argue that the US has a moral obligation to address the harm caused by its military operations.

“America has a debt to pay to the Iraqi people and to our veterans who were exposed to these toxins,” said Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard, a veteran of the Iraq War, in a statement. “We must acknowledge the damage done, take responsibility for it, and provide the necessary resources to help those who have been harmed.”

The US military used burn pits to dispose of a wide range of waste, including chemicals, medical waste, and even human remains. The pits were often located near military bases and populated areas, exposing large numbers of people to toxic smoke and fumes.

The long-term health effects of exposure to the burn pits are not yet fully understood, but many veterans and Iraqis have reported respiratory issues, cancers, and other health problems. The environmental impacts of the pits are also a concern, as they have contaminated soil and water sources in many areas.

The US government has faced criticism in the past for its handling of toxic exposures related to military operations. The case of Agent Orange, a toxic herbicide used by the US military during the Vietnam War, is a well-known example. Many veterans and Vietnamese civilians suffered from health problems related to exposure to the herbicide, and it took decades for the US to acknowledge and address the harm caused.

Now, as more evidence emerges about the health and environmental impacts of the burn pits in Iraq, advocates are calling on the US to take swift action. The US government has a responsibility to address the harm caused by its military operations, and to provide support and compensation to those affected.

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