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Agent Orange and Vietnam

            Vietnam is a small country on the coast of South East Asia. This tiny country has long been ravished by war and conquering neighbors. From the ancient time with one thousand years of dominance from China, to the 1800s with one hundred years of being a colony under France and Japan. In 1954, the country took a twist of faith with the return of Ho Chi Minh after twenty long years of political education abroad. He chased out a weakened French army, and rid the country of the Japanese. Then for the first time in 1955, Vietnam could finally call itself an independent country; only for ten years later the country was under fire, and "the stink of death is obvious at every corner of the country" (Karnow). The Vietnam War marked the country's first struggle as an independent nation, it saw the bloodiest battle it its history. It faced the death of its most profound leader in 1969, along with the countless lives that was lost. Even today, when the country has picked itself up, the effect of the Vietnam War is still vivid; the emotional feelings, mothers losing sons, families being torn apart, the toll on its economy and the division between its people to what was once a united country. Though many people may argue the most relevant effect to this day is what the Vietnamese people call "chat doc mau da cam" or simply known as Agent Orange. .
             Agent Orange was the code name of a herbicide used by the military, it was used primarily in tropical climates. The creation of the product could be dated back to the 1940s, but the testing of Agent Orange did not begin until the 1960s. The purpose of Agent Orange was to deny covering spots for enemies by defoliating trees and bushes in forest and jungle like environments, where enemies hide. In the book "Vietnam War A History" written by Karnow Stanley was talked about the Agent Orange was first sprayed into the jungle of Vietnam in 1965, and was used broadly at the height of the war (1967-1969).

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