AO-affected American veteran finds peace in Vietnam
March 23, 2007
James Rhodes, an American war veteran who was affected by Agent Orange/Dioxin during the US-led war in Vietnam, has found peace of mind each time he has returned to Vietnam.
The American veteran, who is now disabled as consequence of his exposure to the toxic chemical sprayed by the US military over Vietnam during the war, has made frequent trips to Vietnam for medical treatment.
“In violation of the US Embargo against Vietnam, I made the first of many trips back to Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi in 1990 for medical treatment,” he said.
During the first trip, Rhodes met a couple of elderly Vietnamese rice farmers, who had walked by his room in the hospital where he was undergoing medical treatment.
The old couple, who had nine of their children killed by the US military, expressed their sadness that Rhodes was ill and offered their services if they could do anything for him. They also expressed their utmost compassion and forgiveness.
“This is a perfect example of the nature found in Vietnamese people,” Rhodes said.
The US veteran also said that all of his Vietnamese doctors had treated him with the utmost professionalism, courtesy, and respect. He has received expert medical services and treatments and has rarely paid over US $50 per day for them.
“Morever I will never forget that it is the American Government, and the Veterans Administration, that to date refuses to admit or acknowledge my exposure, and related problems, to herbicidal poisons,” he stressed.
”If Vietnam would let me, I would remain in here,” Rhodes concluded. (VNA)