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The U.S. chemical weapons program began during World War I. Chemical weapons production directed principally against people ended in 1969. For nine years between 1962 and 1971 approximately 20 million gallons of defoliants and herbicides were sprayed over Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia by the US military resulting in an estimated 400,000 people killed or maimed and 500,000 children born with birth defects as a result of what were called 'rainbow herbicides' in Operation Ranch Hand.[1] The United States renounced chemical weapons in 1997 and destruction of stockpiled weapons is still ongoing.

Agencies and organizationsEdit

Army agencies and schoolsEdit

The U.S. chemical weapons programs have generally been run by the U.S. Army:

Chem Crest

The regimental insignia of the U.S. Army Chemical Corps


Modern chemical depotsEdit

Active bases

JACADS prior to demolition

Johnston Atoll Chemical Agent Disposal System (JACADS) in 2000

Closed bases

Older chemical weapons program locationsEdit

Treaties, laws and policyEdit

The U.S. is party to several treaties which limit chemical weapons:


Demonstration cluster bomb

M134 cluster bomblets in an Honest John warhead

Canceled weapon projectsEdit

While these weapon systems were developed, they were not produced or stored in the US chemical weapons stockpile.


Declared stockpile and other weaponsEdit

First Chemical weapons destroyed at JACADS

An M55 rocket being destroyed in 1990

Stockpiled chemical agentsEdit


Ball-and-stick model of the (S) enantiomer of VX

Agents stockpiled at the time of Chemical Weapons Convention:

Older chemical agentsEdit

Other equipmentEdit

Exercises, incidents, and accidentsEdit

Operations and exercisesEdit



Chemical testingEdit

See alsoEdit



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