Gulf war veterans sue corporations
 By Larry Neumeister, Associated Press, Wednesday 20 August 2003

NEW YORK - Blaming corporations for fueling former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein's chemical weapons program, veterans of the first Gulf War filed a lawsuit yesterday seeking compensation for illnesses affecting more than 100,000 soldiers. 

''Anyone with eyes and ears knew Saddam [Hussein] was killing people with poison gas in the 1980s,'' lawyer Gary B. Pitts said outside federal court in Brooklyn. ''These companies have to be held accountable or they'll do this same thing in the future with some other tyrant.'' 

The lawsuit seeks unspecified damages for more than 100,000 soldiers who it alleges suffered severe injuries and staggering economic losses after they were exposed to chemicals when coalition forces blew up Iraqi ammunition dumps.

Lawyers said they hoped to force chemical corporations from France, Germany, Switzerland, and the United States to reject future requests for business from tyrants around the globe. 

Some of the illnesses described include memory loss, deterioration of the nervous system and brain functions, chronic fatigue, confusion, and impairment of sensory acuity and coordination. 

According to the filing, the Department of Veterans Affairs has determined that more than 100,000 veterans of the first Gulf War have at least a 10 percent impairment from chemical exposure, about 3,500 veterans have 70 percent impairment, and 1,200 veterans are 100 percent disabled.

  refusing to kill