Modal close

Dear Democracy Now! visitor,

You turn to Democracy Now! for ad-free news you can trust. Maybe you come for our daily headlines. Maybe you come for in-depth stories that expose corporate and government abuses of power. Democracy Now! brings you crucial reporting like our coverage from the front lines of the standoff at Standing Rock or news about the movements fighting for peace, racial and economic justice, immigrant rights and LGBTQ equality. We produce our daily news hour at a fraction of the budget of a commercial news operation—all without ads, government funding or corporate sponsorship. How is this possible? Only with your support. If every visitor to this site in December gave just $10 we could cover our basic operating costs for 2017. Pretty exciting, right? So, if you've been waiting to make your contribution to Democracy Now!, today is your day. It takes just a couple of minutes to make sure that Democracy Now! is there for you and everybody else in 2017.

Non-commercial news needs your support.

We rely on contributions from you, our viewers and listeners to do our work. If you visit us daily or weekly or even just once a month, now is a great time to make your monthly contribution.

Please do your part today.

Topics

Navy Court Martials Airman for Refusing Anthrax Vaccine

StoryAugust 20, 1999
Watch iconWatch Full Show

Eight years after the Persian Gulf War, many veterans in the US military are still suffering from Gulf War illness, which many believe was caused by exposure to toxic elements such as depleted uranium, used by the US military against Iraqi tanks. Many also suspect that they suffered severe auto-immune reactions from an anthrax vaccination that was given to several thousand military personnel.

Recently, several members of the military have refused to be inoculated with the anthrax vaccine, which is now mandatory for all armed forces personnel. Many are saying that the vaccine has not been properly tested and may be unsafe to use. One of those soldiers in Zacchary Johnson, a navy airman who chose to be court-martialed rather than receive the vaccination. He is currently serving a 10-day sentence in the brig before he is finally receives a bad conduct discharge with loss of benefits. The case has sparked congressional action, and the House is set to debate a bill (HR 2548) that seeks to make the vaccination program voluntary, review all discharges and return them to honorable discharge status.

Guest:

  • Robert Johnson, father of Zachary Johnson, a Navy airman imprisoned for refusing to take anthrax vaccine.

The original content of this program is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. Please attribute legal copies of this work to democracynow.org. Some of the work(s) that this program incorporates, however, may be separately licensed. For further information or additional permissions, contact us.

Non-commercial news needs your support

We rely on contributions from our viewers and listeners to do our work.
Please do your part today.

Make a donation