News article – Former Army environmental officer warns of hazardous exposures at Iraqi military bases

Former Army environmental officer warns of hazardous exposures at Iraqi military bases

“That burn pit kept bothering me, because I could smell it and I could see it. It never stopped burning.

— Retired Maj. John “Doc” Nelson

Having served at Mosul, and living and working less than a mile from the burn pit, it was a daily part of my life. The article talks about the burn pit being our Agent Orange, and I would simply add that it is one of our agent orange conditions.

Between the burn pit and Gulf War Syndrome, no one had to be engaged to be injured. We all suffered because the military has no concern as to the health of its soldiers as well as no balls to fight the real enemy, indifferent contractors who simply do not want to spend the money. We could not kick them out because we had too few people fighting in the forever war to handle base operations, so the military stayed silent while we were poisoned and died.

We have already seen that the government is not concerned, and every potential lawsuit we have given has been tossed back. The respiratory, digestive, and neurological symptoms we face will not go away and they will not get better.

Just check out what the EPA says about burning household trash in your backyard. Now imagine what industrial-military waste is like?

Fed up with the pace that it took to make headway on improving methods for waste disposal, Nelson, along with one of the workers for base contractor Kellogg, Brown and Root (KBR), took matters into their own hands. They gathered volunteers to pull hazardous materials out of the trash piles by hand before they could be added to the smoldering burn pits.

“We started putting pressure on the local level,” Nelson said. “We got some volunteers and we went in and started pulling items out of the pits.”