Sunday, May 11, 2008

The CDC, The DVA, NHL, and Hodgkins Disease

An examination of the rather lengthy 1990 report by the Centers for Disease Control, The Association of Selected Cancers with Service in the U.S. Military in Vietnam reveals some very interesting passages that apply to the increased incidence of Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma AND Hodgkins Disease in Blue Water Navy Veterans.

Here is the ONE passage in the entire report that mentions Blue Water Navy Veterans of Vietnam and NHL.

"...Compared with other Vietnam Veterans, the risk of NHL tended to be higher among Navy Veterans, most of whom were stationed on ocean-going vessels. Overall, the risk tended to be higher for men based at sea than for those based on land...."
Also, this ONE quotation that mentions Blue Water Navy Veterans with Hodgkins Disease.

"...In addition, compared with other Vietnam Veterans, the risk for Hodgkins Disease did not significantly differ between those in the Navy [most of whom were stationed on ocean-going vessels with little potential for exposure to Agent Orange] and men in other service branches...."

Source: Selected Cancers Study at the CDC website.

Also see Agent Orange Brief - August 2002.

Now we don't know why the CDC or the DVA would not make a connection between these two diseases and Agent Orange when the report also found a 50% higher risk of these and other cancers among all Vietnam Veterans.

This report was written in 1990, prior to passage of the Agent Orange Act in Congress. Here we are in 2008 and the Department of Veterans Affairs still clings to these two citations as proof of Blue Water Navy Veterans NOT being exposed to Agent Orange. In the interim, the DVA did not ask for a study of Blue Water Navy Veterans, did not ask for a study of the effects of Agent Orange at sea, did not ask for a study to prove that Agent Orange never spread beyond the ocean shoreline, and never asked for a study to find out why "the risk of NHL tended to be higher among Navy Veterans, most of whom were stationed on ocean-going vessels.", especially after the Australian Study on runoff of Dioxin in seawater processed through ship's evaporators. Indeed, they have shown no interest whatsoever in any studies along these lines, continuing to cling to the CDC comment that "...[most of whom were stationed on ocean-going vessels with little potential for exposure to Agent Orange.]...", and in spite of their own-commissioned report by Admiral Zumwalt that pointed out drift of sprayed Agent Orange was capable of carrying up to 29 kilometers!

We would also note that the studies used by the CDC to construct this report were almost all based on far too small a sample population to give reliable results. Any upper level management and the Secretary of the DVA with a half a brain should have commissioned an entirely new study.

This, ladies and gentlemen is depraved indifference and criminal negligence. Depraved indifference is defined by the website
US Legal Definitions this way:

"To constitute depraved indifference, the defendant's conduct must be 'so wanton, so deficient in a moral sense of concern, so lacking in regard for the life or lives of others, and so blameworthy as to warrant the same criminal liability as that which the law imposes upon a person who intentionally causes a crime. Depraved indifference focuses on the risk created by the defendant’s conduct, not the injuries actually resulting."
Criminal Negligence is defined by US Legal Definitions this way:

"Criminal negligence is negligence which requires a greater degree of culpability than the civil standard of negligence. The civil standard of negligence is defined according to a failure to follow the standard of conduct of a reasonable person in the same situation as the defendant. To show criminal negligence, the state must prove beyond a reasonable doubt the mental state involved in criminal negligence. Proof of that mental state requires that the failure to perceive a substantial and unjustifiable risk that a result will occur must be a gross deviation from the standard of a reasonable person. Criminal negligence is conduct which is such a departure from what would be that of an ordinary prudent or careful person in the same circumstance as to be incompatible with a proper regard for human life or an indifference to consequences. Criminal negligence is negligence that is aggravated, culpable or gross."
We suggest that the successive Secretaries of the Department of Veterans Affairs are guilty of both of these crimes and should be brought to justice. We are prepared to fax information to the Attorney General of the United States with accumulated evidence, asking that the Justice Department charge all the Secretaries of the DVA since 1990 with both of these crimes in Federal Court.

The gloves are off now.


"It is a stain on this nation's honor that the Department of Veterans Affairs has become a deadlier and more difficult adversary to the American veteran than any they have ever faced on a battlefield." --VNVets

"With malice toward none; with charity for all; with firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in; to bind up the nation's wounds; to care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan--to do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace, among ourselves, and with all nations." -- President Abraham Lincoln

"Without a decisive naval force we can do nothing definitive, and with it, everything honorable and glorious." --President George Washington

Copyright © 2005-2008: VNVets Blog; All Rights Reserved.


  1. I think that the time has come for bluewater vets to get the american public's attention to this matter. I feel strongly that all able bluewater vets to march on Washington and surrender replicas of our viet nam service medals on the steps of the DVA in protests of not being considered by the VA as serving in Viet Nam. I'm willing but it's going to take numbers of demonstrators along with me in order to have an impact. What are your thoughts??

  2. I think that is an excellent idea. One point, however...I think it would be wasted on the DVA. Rather, I suggest the Capitol, and go to Akaka's Office, and dump the medals there.

    We may not be given access, so perhaps a demonstration out in front of the Capitol might work. We can dump the medals into a box and get a delegation to take them to Akaka's office.

  3. Anonymous11:48

    You don't suppose that the VA hangs their hat on other passages within the same report such as:

    "[most of whom were stationed on ocean-going vessels with little potential for exposure to Agent Orange]"

    It's a well-known fact that most will read things the way they want them to sound.....we are probably guilty of it ourselves from time to time...the problem, one I thought we had solved with HAAS, is to get others to read it the same way we do. It's a given that the VA isn't going to do this. I had thought that the fact they looked like such fools during some of this....the debate over USN evaporator plants vs RAN units is one that comes to ming....then I realized there's really no audience for all this except the VA and us.....and our opinion of the VA is already about as low as it can why would they care?? I agree that anything that turns the rock over and makes the general public aware is something the DVA and the government in general, including the puppet courts want to avoid....

  4. I absolutely agree. I think the VA does exactly that. There is also the distinct probability that the DVA insisted on that phrase being in there...God knows they fought against any AO benefits right from the early 1970s on.

    Yes, the idea is to kick over the rock, and we all know what lives under rocks.