While 58,000 American soldiers, mostly from poor and working families, were killed in the Vietnam War, tens of thousands of others returned from the war with permanent physical and psychological scars. Many have been afflicted with post traumatic stress syndrome, alcoholism and drug dependency, while others developed cancers and had children with birth deformities caused by the chemical Agent Orange, and had to live with serious permanent injuries.
And the Vietnamese population is still suffering from the consequences of the war. With 300,000 missing in action, millions of civilians killed and soaring cancer rates due to Agent Orange, Vietnam also remains among the world’s poorest nations, with an average per capita income of $370 a year.
- Ben Chitty, Coordinator of the Clarence Fitch Chapter of the VietnamVeterans Against the War.
- Ambassador Nguyen Thanh Chau, Permanent Representative of Vietnam to the United Nations.