Attorney Claims Puerto Rico Was Unlawfully Exposed to Experiments

At the recent International Penal Law Symposium held by the Puerto Rico Bar Association between March 10 and 12 in San Juan, Puerto Rico, attorney Aleida Centeno Rodríguez lectured on unaccountability regarding violations to legislation protecting the island’s environment, including people’s health, since the enactment of the commonwealth Constitution in 1952. She spoke about evidence that chemical, electromagnetic, and nuclear radiation experiments were conducted extensively in Puerto Rico during the past 50 years, producing lethal results that have gone unpunished.

She presented recently disclosed Veterans Affairs Administration and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers documents indicating that between 1956 and 1968, the U.S. Department of Defense not only sprayed dioxin-powered herbicide Agent Orange on plants at El Yunque Rainforest, but used similar chemicals in experiments involving vegetation throughout the island in the 1950s and 1960.

The U.S. military sought to test effective herbicides and defoliants to be used in warfare, as was the case with Agent Orange, which was used by the U.S. military in South Vietnam and Cambodia during the 1960s and 1970s, resulting in thousands of illnesses and deaths among soldiers and civilians. Apparently the Agent Orange compound and other chemicals (herbicides and defoliants to be used in warfare) were tested in Luquillo and Las Marías. Herbicides and defoliants were also applied in “highly concentrated solutions” to vegetation in such locations as the Cerro Las Mesas and La Jagua experimental areas in Mayagüez, Joyuda Beach in Cabo Rojo, and Guánica Forest in 1956 and 1957. In 1967, the Dow Chemical Company was awarded a defense contract to test herbicides and defoliants on varying vegetation situations near Río Grande and Cerro Las Mesas in Mayagüez in 1967 and 1968. The chemicals included picloram, bromacil, pyriclor, and terbacil.

According to Centeno Rodríguez the chemicals were found to cause such illnesses as leukemia, diabetes mellitus, heart disease, Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, and prostate and respiratory cancers. She stated that without information, it is difficult to identify an environmental problem and the violations to the laws if “you don’t know about these situations?” These experiments have been carefully hidden from the public. For example, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission tried in 2006 to get El Yunque off of the list of locations where nuclear radiation experiments were conducted, arguing that the radiation has dissipated since they took place in 1966.

Centeno Rodríguez cited the legislation for protecting the island’s environment and its people. As another example of unaccountability and defiance of these laws, she offered the example of electromagnetic contamination caused by experiments on the island, which produce more than 40,000 megahertz of energy at electromagnetic-generating facilities in Cayey, Aguada, and at the Arecibo Observatory radio telescope facility; the recommended exposure limit set by the U.N. is 10 megahertz for six minutes.

In Arecibo, the U.S. Department of Defense is operating HAARP ionospheric heater experiments generating energy ranging from 2,000 to 20,000 megahertz, a frequency that has been scientifically proven to cause long-term health problems to the surrounding population, including predisposition to suicide, according to the attorney. She does not think that it is a coincidence that 57 residents of Arecibo’s Barrio La Esperanza had committed suicide last year noting that the link between suicides and electromagnetism has been well-documented. In her lecture, Centeno Rodríguez stressed the need for an international tribunal to prosecute such environmental cases.

For full article, see http://www.prdailysun.com/index.php?page=news.article&id=1268621146

Photo of the Arecibo Observatory (courtesy of the NAIC – Arecibo Observatory, a facility of the NSF) from http://www.naic.edu/

10 thoughts on “Attorney Claims Puerto Rico Was Unlawfully Exposed to Experiments

  1. Hi ! Can you provide me with Herbicides in the area of Mayaguez. My dad was diagnos with agent orange after he served army in korea 1952-53 but he lived next to mountain cerro las mesas he was exposed va confirm he had it. I need information to support that horrible contamination.
    Department of defrense.

    1. Puerto Rico
      Location: Las Mesas and La Jagua experimental areas at Mayaguez, Puerto Rico
      Dates: 2/1956 – 6/1956
      Project Description: During February to June, 9 chemicals were evaluated in PR on 16 genera tropical woody plants. The chemicals were applied in highly concentrated solutions with a microsprayer to the leaves.
      Agents: 2,4,5-T, 2,4-D, pentachlorophenol, ammate, weedazol, endothal Harvestaid, Butyne -1,4-diol
      DoD Involvement: Yes
      Location: Guanica and Joyuda, Puerto Rico
      Dates: 6/1956 – 9/1956
      Project Description: 9 chemicals were evaluated on 16 genera of tropical woody between June and September. The chemicals were sprayed to duplicate small branches, using a microsprayer.
      Agents: 2,4,5-T, potassium cyanate, amiendo, F-2, 6-Ca-4, Y-F Tree and Brush Kiler, ACP M- 118, ShedA-Leaf
      DoD Involvement: Yes
      Location: Las Mesas and La Jagua, Mayaguez, Joyuda at Cabo Rojo, and Guanica Insular Forest at Guanica, Puerto Rico
      Dates: 9/1956-12/1956
      Project Description: 16 compounds with defoliating properties were evaluated using 28 different tropical woody plants, each representing a separate genus. The chemicals were applied to duplicate small branches with a microsprayer and to single larger branches or whole trees with a 2-gallon knapsack sprayer.
      Agents: 6-Ca-4,Liojn Oil,2,4,5-T, B-1613, B-1638, Ammate, V-C1-186, endothal, shed-a-leaf, M-118, Y-F,esteron 2,4-D,F3,F4,F5,F6
      DoD Involvement: Yes
      Location: Las Mesas and La Jagua, Mayaguez, Guanica Beach, Puerto Rico
      Dates: 1/1957 – 3/1957
      Project Description: 7 compounds were evaluated on 29 different woody plants to determine their effectiveness as defoliants, desiccants, and as killing agents. They were applied with a microsprayer to the upper leaf surfaces of duplicate small branches.
      Agents: V-C 3-105, V-C 1-21, V-C 1-443, F-7, TBP, Phillips 713, V-C 3-173
      DoD Involvement: Yes
      Location: Las Mesas and La Jagua, Mayaguez, Guanica Beach, Puerto Rico
      Dates: 4/1957 – 6/1957
      Project Description: 7 compounds were sprayed on 25 different plants in order to evaluate their effectiveness as defoliants, desiccants, and killing agents. The compounds were applied with a microsprayer to the upper and lower leaf surfaces of duplicate small branches.
      Agents: B-1676, B-1638, NP 1098, SD 1369, Ammate, Shed-a-leaf
      DoD Involvement: Yes
      Location: Las Mesas and La Jagua, Mayaguez, Puerto Rico
      Dates: 7/1957 – 12/1957
      Project Description: 8 different spray formulations were applied to 16 different tropical trees and shrubs in order to evaluate their effectiveness as defoliants, desiccants, and killing agents.
      Agents: MgClO3, Golden Harvest Defoliant, Dow-M562, F-8, F9, F-10, F-11, F-12
      DoD Involvement: Yes
      Location: Loquillo, Puerto Rico
      Dates: 4/1966, 10/1966
      Project Description: Field tests of defoliants were designed to evaluate such variables as rates, volume of application, season, and vegetation. Data from aerial application tests at several CONUS and OCONUS locations are provided in tables.
      Agents: Orange
      DoD Involvement: Yes
      Location: Las Marias, Puerto Rico
      Dates: 2/1967 – 12/1967
      Project Description: During the period of 12/1966 – 10/1967, a comprehensive short-term evaluation was conducted by personnel from Fort Detrick’s Plant Science Lab in coordination with contract research on formulations by chemical industry and field tests by USDA and U of HI.
      Agents: Various, including Orange
      DoD Involvement: Yes
      Location: Near Rio Grande, on the northeast coast of Puerto Rico
      Dates: 8/23/1967, 10/18/1967, 12/21/1967-12/26/1967
      Project Description: In 1967, the Dow Chemical Company was awarded a DoD research contract. The objective was to prepare as pellets mixtures of various herbicides and to test them on varying vegetation situations for the control of a range of plant species.
      Agents: Picloram, bromacil, pyriclor, and terbacil
      DoD Involvement: Undetermined
      Location: Las Mesas Cerros, Mayaguez, Puerto Rico
      Dates: 5/24/1968, 5/26/1968, 5/27/1968
      Project Description: In 1967, the Dow Chemical Company was awarded a DoD research contract. The objective was to prepare as pellets mixtures of various herbicides and to test them on varying vegetation situations for the control of a range of plant species.
      Agents: Picloram, bromacil, pyriclor
      DoD Involvement: Undetermined

      1. I understand that agent orange and other chemicals such as DDT and Diesel fuel mixed together and sprayed on a regular basis for mosquitos and other bugs. Also what chemicals were to control weeds and grass on the perimeter of the base and on the base itself. It makes me wonder.

  2. How many years after the testing of these chemicals are the ingredients active and harmful. Does anyone know which herbicides and insecticides were used on and around Ramey Air Force Base in Puerto Rico?

    1. My DAD WAS STATIONED AT Fort Buchanan 1963-1965. Where we lived. We as kids played in the fog of the chemical agent sprayed daily on base like an ice cream truck. My Dad was diagnosed with Agent Orange as a adult all three of his children have heart disease and diabetes as he did . Anyone have information on this?

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