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During the Vietnam War, the United States Army Chemical Corps developed several herbicides to destroy vegetation in Vietnam and deny cover for National Liberation Front (Viet Cong) and North Vietnamese Army forces. Agent Orange was the most widely used chemical herbicide, especially during operation Ranch Hand from 1962 to 1971. This entry presents a history of the use of herbicides in Vietnam, a brief description of the various herbicides and their properties, and the background of the 1970 decision to ban their further use in Vietnam. The entry continues with a discussion of health and environmental issues related to the wartime use of herbicides, particularly Agent Orange, and concludes with a discussion of the challenges subsequently faced not only by those who were exposed to ...

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