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Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Inquiry into Gulf War illnesses

Inquiry into Gulf War illnesses - London, July - September 2004
Inquiry into Gulf War illnesses - London, July - September 2004
1.Vaccinations, organophosphates, NAPS, burnt-oil smoke, blowing up of Iraqi chemical weapon depots

Firstly, [the soldiers] went through a multiple immunisation programme of up to 14 and sometimes over 14 inoculations, many troops having had a large number of competing vaccines in a single session which included, to name just a few, anthrax, whooping cough, plague and cholera.  Secondly, they experienced the first ever mass use of NAPS tablets, that is the nerve agent pre‑treatment set to be used as an antidote against chemical weapons.  They were exposed to a heavy use of pesticides, including locally purchased ones, and organophosphates over which there are now many safety questions.  They were exposed to atmospheric pollution from burning oil wells.  There was a possible exposure to nerve agents when Iraqi chemical weapons storage facilities were destroyed.  John Nicol, Flight Lieutenant, 12 July 2004.
On 3 January I received the following vaccinations: yellow fever, typhoid, cholera, hepatitis B, meningitis.  On my vaccination record card it says biological but I do know now that it is anthrax and also Pertussis.  I do hold my original vaccination card, well safely locked away.  We also began taking anti‑malaria treatment.  We were taking palludrine, one daily, and chloroquine, one weekly... We later found out that all the accommodation had been treated with organophosphate sprays and in the accommodation block where I was situated there was organophosphate powder around the accommodation block... Some of the drugs that arrived were out‑of‑date.  The equipment was well suited to World War II...  The order then came that we start taking nerve agent protection tablets, one every eight hours.  I, like others, reacted to the NAPS tablets and I was actually taken to our own sick bay by one of my colleagues because at that time I was disorientated, I was dizzy, I really had not a clue what I was doing or where I was... On 24 January I had further vaccinations.  I had anthrax, Pertussis and the plague vaccine... On 25 February we had further vaccines - anthrax, plague and hepatitis B.  Major Christine Lloyd, Territorial Army, 12 July 2004.

In other cases of cancer, which has been mentioned here, I definitely think the burning oil wells, depleted uranium or maybe nerve agents might have caused those problems.  As I say, in my specific case I can see it being... the inoculations… I then received five inoculations on one day and the next day I had to report again and I received another four inoculations.  I was a young lad, I was 21 years old. I thought what I was doing was right and it must be a thing we have to have to go to the Gulf.  Two days before the planned deployment before we were supposed to be sent to the Gulf the War finished. Alex Izett, Corps of the Royal Engineers, 12 July 2004.
I was given routine vaccinations hepatitis B, hepatitis A, polio, yellow fever, tetanus, meningococcal C... I was given further hepatitis B and cholera vaccinations and three other vaccinations which I was advised were biological.  It must be noted that none of the vaccinations, routine or otherwise, were recorded on my F Med 4 medical documentation despite my documents being present at the time of vaccination in the UK... After a few days... [I was] given another vaccine in each arm and issued anti‑malarial tablets and nerve agent pre-treatment tablets, commonly known as NAPS... Whilst at Blackadder there was a constant spraying of the tented area with liquid around the doorways and window area and in the latrines and the dining areas by civilian employees with plastic canisters on their back and spray guns with a nozzle-type effect.  When I say on their backs, like a pump‑type plastic canister, somebody would be pumping it and a guy would spray it.  The civilians were Filipino, not wearing any protection equipment other than a rag over their faces, and nobody thought it at that time to be anything unusual.  We did not know that the product being used was Diazanon which was harmful to man and a sheep‑dip type pesticide... 
  I understand that troops had been refusing the vaccines and not attending at designated times hence Part One orders were written to ensure attendance.  Failure to attend could lead to court martial.  I was given one in the upper right arm, one in the left... A few days later we were ordered to have another course of injections.  There seemed to be a rush to be ready for ground operations. These two again we are given in the upper right arm and outer right quadrant (my bum, my Lord!)  This injection gave me terrible pain and led to parasthesia and I was literally dragging my leg around... It must be questioned when the massive chemical weapons pits at Al Khamisiyah were blown up, not once or twice but at least four times between 1 and 10 March 1991, could the Army MoD have protected the troops by masking the troops up?  However, the facts are that we were walking about with no protective suits or respirators during the demolition of not just this pit but others containing weapons of mass destruction, containing Sarin Cyclo Sarin... There were 16 associated weapons pits blown up. Khamisiyah itself was blown up four times... Vaccinations and medications you were given for the Gulf War were classified secret, therefore would not be recorded...
  In 1997 the MoD admitted that a facsimile was sent by the Department of Health to the MoD advising the MoD of concerns and anxieties over giving anthrax vaccine in conjunction with the whooping cough (Pertussis).  At the time of the admission of this fact the MoD stated they did not know who had sent the fax and did not know who received it at the MoD.  This was an untruth.  The fax was from Dr Jeremy Metters, Department of Health, to the Secretary of State for Defence. … [Organophosphates] had been purchased in Saudi Arabia with Arabic instructions which led to the wrong concentrations being put down in troop areas.  Shaun Rusling, Vice Chairman of the National Gulf Veterans and Families Association, 12 July 2004.
On 16 February I had the unfortunate episode of having to call in to a United States refuelling depot half way up the military supply road to refuel the vehicle.  I stood in a convoy of 1,500 vehicles.  Every day between four o’clock and six o’clock, for any vehicles in that refuelling unit the road was blocked by military police to stop them going out, and within that period of time everybody who was on that base had to have inoculations.  The Americans, when they do their inoculations it is not done through informed consent, it is compulsory that you have them.  The medical team come round.  They are slightly better than ours because they have doctors doing it whilst medical orderlies can do the inoculations here.  The doctors come round with four military policemen and the military policemen are there to hold you down if you try and refuse your inoculations.  Larry Cammock, Chairman of the Gulf Veterans Association, 12 July 2004.
What happened was that they came round to the camp areas, especially the censored areas and the wash-down areas, and sprayed everything whether or not we were inside the tents asleep.  Terence Edward Walker, Royal Army Ordinance Corps, 12 July 2004.
We were then subjected to about 11 to 12 injections in either arm.  No informed consent was given or asked for.  When asked what we were receiving, I was told that we had been given just another routine vaccination... Every morning after taking these NAPS tablets my hands and lower jaw would become numb.  After seeking help, I was told that this was normal as my nerves were being protected... We also passed through burning oil fields thick with black smoke which looked like night-time to the naked eye.  Jason Alcorn, Duke of Wellington Regiment, 12 July 2004.
[My husband] told me that... he walked through a tent with both his sleeves rolled up and that they were jabbing him in each arm.  He was not altogether sure what he was given.  He also told me that he was given tablets which did not make him feel very well and he spoke to people about them and they told him to keep taking them.  Mrs Vicky Warriner, veteran's former wife, 12 July 2004.
I spoke to somebody many years after who said they were given the option of whether they had [the vaccination] or not.  It did not transpire down to our level that we had an option.  Noel Baker, First Battalion, 12 July 2004.
I was given eight inoculations… I do not think that they took any notice of previous injections.  Some of those injections you are not supposed to have within a year and nothing was done about what you had had previously. Richard Sharpe, RAF, 12 July 2004.

As far as immunisation is concerned, I remember lining up for several of these over a two-day period but was not always aware of what they were.  Basically, we were not told what they were; we were lined up with our sleeves rolled up and they were pumped in... I also felt at the time and my records show that I was exposed to nerve agent... The MoD denied at first but since has agreed with me that I was in the area of the exposure at the ammunitions depot at Khamisyia Depot.  At the time, all our NIADS indicated sarin, which is a nerve agent poison.  They all indicated that we were exposed to sarin and, at the time, we were not wearing chemical defence equipment... We were told afterwards that there was no such exposure.  However, since, I have received a letter from the MoD stating that I was in the area at the time it was blown up and that, if I have any problem with sarin poisoning, I should take that up with the American Government because they were the ones that blew the factory up.Stephen Roberts, 16/5 Queen’s Royal Lancers, 12 July 2004.

We were given a further course of injections.  I do not know what they were; I have no medical records to tell me what they were; I have asked many times for information as to what they were and it has been refused. We were also given NAPS and malaria tablets.  The injections were given over a 48-hour period and I probably received 12 to 14 injections in total.  Russell Walker, RAF, 12 July 2004.

On 4 January 1991 everyone in the camp at Dharan was ordered to attend for inoculations with the stipulation that non-attendance would be met with disciplinary action.  When we attended the next morning for these inoculations we were given no information at all about what we were receiving.  We were given no chance to ask about possible side effects to the massive number of injections they were planning to give us... Over a ten minute period I received, to my knowledge, anthrax, Bubonic Plague, Cholera, Typhoid, Yellow Fever, Hepatitis A, Hepatitis B, meningitis and a couple of others I am not too sure about.  These were not given as single injections but as inoculations containing two or three vaccinations at a time… You were stood there with one person that side injecting you and one person that side injecting you.  Richard Turnbull, RAF, 19 July 2004.

I never left the UK... I strongly suspect the reason for my ill health is due to the inoculations... I asked what I was being given. I was told “it’s what everybody who’s going to the Gulf is having”.  I handed over my B Med27, which is a personnel inoculation card, to get the inoculations recorded on it and was told there was no need.  I questioned this, and the reason I did question it was because if you did not have that up to date it was a chargeable offence…  [Squalene was] injected to make the vaccine work better.  It causes autoimmune disease...  Dr Moonie, who was the Minister for Veterans at the time... categorically denied the use of squalene as an adjuvant.  This was confirmed in a letter dated 31 August which was written by Mr Stephen Trout on Mr Moonie’s behalf.  In March 2003, less than 18 months after their categorical denials, vials of British anthrax were washed up on the South Coast.  These vials were tested and found to contain squalene… 
  I did write to PMA at RAF Innsworth where they keep all our files and requested my medical file and my personnel file.  In my personnel file, every movement that I made, even a day’s detachment to another unit, is recorded on that.  There is nothing at all whatsoever, not even a little snippet, of anything to do with my deployment to the Gulf... In my medical file there are three words that are partially obscured by another entry and you can only just make out that it says “Fit Operation Granby”.  When I wrote and questioned this I had a reply from RAF Innsworth saying they do not understand why my recollection appears to be so different from what is actually recorded.  It is as if I never went, never had anything to do with it.  Anwen Humphreys, RAF, 19 July 2004

We had several injections... but I was never told what they were for... The tents were sprayed but we were not told with what or what the reason was.  I was ordered to take NAP tablets from 17 January onwards... On travel from location to location to refuel our tankers we would travel through the smoke of the burning oilfields.  Michael Capps, Royal Corps of Transport, 19 July 2004.
Prior to deployment with RAOC AMF(l) we received a number of vaccines and, from memory, it was about four injections a day twice over a short seven-day period... As it was, when I arrived in March 1991, the land war had just finished and I was employed in the Gulf in my trade as a petroleum operator.  This entailed cleaning up/organising all military petroleum and lubricants for transportation back to the UK.  One of the main tasks and most unpleasant was decanting thousands of army jerricans which were from all over the theatre of operations and placing the fuel back into large bulk fuel containers.  We had no protective equipment or facemasks, only thin fatigues and desert boots.  We worked long hours in extreme temperatures for two months whilst completing this task and I can still taste the petrol in my mouth now from when we did this task.  Mark McGreevy, Royal Signals, 19 July 2004.

We started having inoculations in Germany where we were based prior to the Gulf and also various inoculations in theatre itself, various injections and tablets we were taking, almost on a willy nilly basis... There was deep concern on the ground with the men in general and the amount of inoculations that were suddenly appearing in the Gulf, but we were not in a position to question.  We had to accept them.  We could not refuse.  We were ordered to take these various drugs.  Alvin Pritchard, Queen's Dragoon Guards, 19 July 2004.

[My husband said] "Oh, I have had another set of vaccinations again today, I am going to be a pin cushion by the time I have finished", and it seemed to be a constant thing that was going on for quite a number of weeks before he went, that he was taking an amount of vaccinations, and when he actually arrived in the Gulf he wrote to me and said, "I thought I had got away with this and I am still receiving yet more vaccinations"…  THE CHAIRMAN: Would you agree that perhaps that [the destruction he saw during the war] was the cause of his change of mood rather than the injections and vaccinations he had?         A.  No, I would not, because he had seen such active service elsewhere.  He had seen quite a few things in Northern Ireland, particularly in the ‘70s, particularly serving with the Parachute regiment that he talked freely about for years, and it never upset him in the same way.  Obviously he was not happy about them but they never upset him in the same way.  Louisa Graham, a veteran's widow, 19 July 2004.
On 8 January I had I think either six or seven vaccines given in both arms, and again two days later I had exactly the same vaccines pumped into me... Although I took my air crew vaccination record they refused to put anything on there... I thought they were doubling up vaccines I already had... I was taking the NAPS tablets as well…  Almost 100 per cent of sick Gulf veterans, that have been tested, test positive for squalene antibodies... THE CHAIRMAN:  Any particular vaccine, can you recall, or not?  A.   Well, the anthrax vaccines from the United States had squalene in them.  Adrian Willson, RAF, 19 July 2004.

I had three anthrax vaccinations and with the whooping cough two of them are dated and one is not dated.  There is no record of my plague vaccination… If you are going to have a whole lot of vaccines, as certain of the veterans did, this could lead to a considerable amount of mercury being given in a short period of time to the veterans.  Mercury is a very, very toxic compound; it is the most toxic metal which is not a radionucleotide.  Then there are organophosphates in the form of chemical warfare agents: Sarin, or Cyclo-Sarin; and insecticides in the form of sprays or flea collars; infections have been implicated; combat stress – which does not explain the non-deployed people and the people who were in more rural areas – and depleted uranium...
  The anthrax vaccine was devised to protect veterinarians, workers in laboratories and in the hair-and-hide industries against cutaneous anthrax.  The mode of delivery, if one were to use anthrax as a biological weapon, would be in the form of anthrax spores and an aerosol.  There is no evidence that this would protect anybody against aerosol-delivered anthrax. The manufacturers’ recommended administration regime is four doses over 32 weeks.  Veterans were given the anthrax vaccinations over much shorter periods of time... Not very much was known about the anthrax and plague vaccines, and probably nothing was known about giving so many vaccines together in such a short period of time.  For medical science, this is undoubtedly virgin territory... There is no precedent to giving so many vaccinations to so many people, all over a short period of time. Dr Nigel Humphrey Graveston, Chair of the National Gulf Veterans and Families Association, 33 Field Hospital RAMC at Al Jubail in Saudi Arabia. Consultant anaesthetist in the army, 19 July 2004.
I was given routine vaccinations for Hepatitis A, Polio, Yellow Fever, Tetanus, Meningococcal C... I was given a further Cholera vaccine, and three other vaccines, which I was advised were biological – and no other description was given.  It must be noted that none of the vaccines, routine or secret vaccines, were recorded on my F Med 4 medical documentation, despite my documents being present at the time, here in the UK.  I was given another vaccine in each arm and issued anti-malarial tablets and nerve agent pre-treatment tablets, or NAPs... Whilst at Blackadder camp there was constant spraying of the tended area with liquid around the doorways and window area and in the latrines and dining areas by civilian employees with plastic canisters.  The civilians were what I believe are called Saudi guest workers.  They did not wear any protection equipment other than a rag over their faces, and nobody thought anything about it at the time.  I/we did not know that the product being used, Diazanon was harmful to man, and a sheep-dip type pesticide, which I believe is banned in the UK... In fact, we were briefed that the air strikes had released Sarin nerve gas into the atmosphere.  However, the next day the “powers that be” decided to change their minds and said the alarms were due to the incineration of rubbish... Troops had not been going for their vaccines at their designated times – because we were a hospital there were night shifts, day shifts, and some people were asleep.  Part One Orders were produced to ensure attendance.  It stated that failure to attend could lead to court martial.  Raymond Bristow, military warrant officer theatre technician and combat medical technician, both Class 1, 19 July 2004.

We started receiving vaccinations at the end of August, early September, 1990... We were not told [what they were] at the time.  That continued every two or three weeks; we reported to the med centre for more vaccinations... The final round of shots we had were round about Christmas 1990... We received seven or eight injections plus the polio.  I asked what I was being given on that occasion purely because I thought I was getting a double dose of things I had already had... We were asked to read what I believe was an amendment to the Official Secrets Act and told to sign our name on a nominal roll just to say we had read it and received the vaccinations.  As soon as we had had them, we were told that should we have any illness in later life, then we would not be able to make a claim on the basis of these vaccinations.  Andrew Hazard, Royal Engineers, 19 July 2004.

Khamisiyah and the other two where munitions were blown up that had nerve agents in them… I believe that civilians in the area could be affected as well.  Brigadier Robin Garnet, Chairman of the Medical Advisory Committee for the Royal British Legion, 21 July 2004.

As soon as we got off the plane, about two hours after we got off the plane, we were sent to a tent where we were told --- they just said it was some kind of injections.  They did not explain to us what they were. THE CHAIRMAN:  Can you remember how many?     A.  I think it was round about six injections... We had to go back in the next day; we had some more injections the day after... Also we were told to start taking NAPs tablets. THE CHAIRMAN:  How many of those did you take?     A.  It was one a day…  We did carry a lot of ammunition on the back.  There were a lot of ammunition dumps at the time when I was out there. SIR MICHAEL DAVIES:  The sprays were being used around the ammunition dumps? A.  Yes.  Michael Barber, Royal Corps of Transport, 21 July 2004.

In 1988 I was administered with vaccines for protection against cholera, polio, TABT and meningitis A and C.  Also, as a precaution against malaria, I was prescribed with the correct tablets required for a particular area of operations.  In late 1989 I was also vaccinated against yellow fever... On 9 January 1991 at RAF Lyneham I was vaccinated with anthrax (batch 01/90) and pertussis (batch CO251A) with no lingering after-effects... On the patio area a locally employed person was often observed carrying out insect spraying duties.  Obviously, in the cool of the morning the insects could be caught resting, but encountering this person at his work caused personnel to protect their food and themselves as best as possible from the fallout of the spraying which smelt rather like creosote.  The substance also left the greasy coloured appearance of petrol on the surface of the swimming pool.  The pool was used a great deal for recreation and exercise.  After cease flying on 31 January 1991 the crew were required to report to the field medical unit in the basement of King Khalid Airport for further vaccinations.  I was administered with anthrax (batch 343/E) and pertussis (batch E1138)...
  After this experience as a crew we elected not to have the final batch of vaccinations.  Shortly after hostilities started we were ordered to start taking NAPs tablets... Our initial flight to Kuwait was at approximately 5,000 feet but because of the oil smoke we had to descend below this to approximately 1,000 feet.  Our initial descent took us through the smoke and because of the acrid smell we encountered the aircraft air conditioning was shut down and auxiliary ventilation had to be selected to purge the fuselage interior.  On landing and before take-off I had to remove from the windscreens a film of dark, partially burnt oil.  Geoffrey Brown, RAF, 21 July 2004.

Whilst in the Gulf we had three sets of vaccinations.  The first set was on 3 January, which consisted of anthrax and pertussis, which I am sure you know is more commonly known as the whooping cough vaccine.  The second set was administered on 30 January 1991 and consisted of anthrax, pertussis and yersinia.  The third set was on 23 February 1991, which was anthrax and yersinia.  All the vaccinations were recorded in my BMED27 and I believe they have batch numbers next to them and the dosage.  Going on to when I had the vaccines administered, the first set was given to us at Al Jubayl, at the tent compound, and we were basically given no briefing.  We were basically told, “Go and have the vaccinations”.  I was a young soldier of 22, I did what I was told, as did the whole unit.  Everybody went, everybody got vaccinated.  When we got to the desert we were ordered to take NAPs tablets every eight hours in early January, just prior to the start of the air war and just prior to the administering of the second set of vaccinations, and again we simply followed orders...
  The second set of vaccinations was slightly different to the first set.  Although we had the same OC who was in location at the time, on this occasion at the forward formation area he did actually brief us.  He told us that the injections were optional but he said that he was going to have them and he strongly advised us that we have them as well.  He gave us a dire warning that even if we were hit by the anthrax vaccine the lining of our lungs would disintegrate and drown us.  It is also worth noting that this OC warned us once that one in five of us would die.  I do not know his reasons behind that.  He reassured us that the anthrax vaccine had been safely used on a remote Scottish island many years previously and that the scientists involved were all fine.  At no time was there any mention that there was any risk of taking the multiple vaccinations.  This was not discussed whatsoever.  When we were given the second set of injections there was one soldier who did turn down the anthrax vaccination, but he took all the others, which I found very odd at the time.  I did not quite understand why he would not have the anthrax vaccine.  Interestingly enough, I found out afterwards that his father was a major at another unit serving in the Gulf and that he had been in communication with him, so the soldier refusing makes some sense now.  Obviously, his father knew something and relayed it to him...
  The third set of vaccinations was given when I was with 4 Ord Battalion, again no briefing.  We were simply told to get the injections the same as the first time round... I always wondered where I was when the Khamisiyah dumps were bombed, and from Sean’s evidence I read this morning that I was in the vicinity of Khamisiyah… Some other relevant information you have probably heard before but I would still like to bring it up.  There was a fax that went missing.  The National Institute for Biological Standards and Control sent a fax to Dr Metters at the Department of Health who send it to the MoD in 1990, December, before the Gulf War started regarding concerns in administering the anthrax vaccine and the Pertussis vaccine together.  However, the MoD, as you are already aware, still ordered the vaccination programme though they were aware of the possible dangers...
  Another point:  I watched the Trevor Macdonald Tonight programme last year which discussed the vials of anthrax washed up on a beach in Dorset.  They were tested in a lab and found to contain the illegal adjuvant squalene.  The MoD admitted they had fallen off the back of a Royal Navy ship, as they were MoD vials.  However, on this programme, Dr Lewis Moonie sat there and pompously refused to accept the findings of what he called “chemists”, even though the vials were tested in a genuine laboratory by qualified laboratory technicians.  Jason Bosworth, Ordnance Corps, 21 July 2004.

I received a comprehensive set of inoculations whilst at Brize Norton.  However, once in theatre I was told to stand in line and receive another batch of inoculations.  I do not know what injections were administered.  No records were kept and my name was not asked for...  I was also taking the nerve agent pre-treatment NAPS, along with anti malarial tablets… 
SIR MICHAEL DAVIES:  Were you exposed to fly spraying?  
A. We were heavily exposed to the spray.  It used to come in a white can and it used to say “Do not spray in confined spaces”.  Well, this was not always possible and things like the mosquitoes and the various insects that were out there you really did not want around your bed, so we used to spray this in the tents a bit like a fog sometimes, and I chuckle sometimes now because you can go to the shop and buy a tin of fly spray and the fly buzzes around for quite a few hours before he eventually dies, but I remember with this particular insecticide that we used things just used to drop off the tent like rain once you had sprayed that initial burst, so it must have been particularly powerful, the actual insecticide inside.  Michael Roy Lingard, RAF, 21 July 2004.

The rest of us, I do not think were ordered to take vaccine or injections the way the army guys were.  I think we were advised to, and it was a case of  “Do you want black plague or anthrax or an injection?” and I think the majority of us took the injection...  We did have environmental health technicians with us who did spray the tents, etc, but at the time we would not have thought it was going to be a problem because we were in a foreign land so you want to keep your hygiene to a high state so we carried on with the spraying, with no information to the opposite.  Gerard Davey, RAF, 21 July 2004.

I enlisted in the Royal Air Force in 1972 and although I would never have described myself as fighting fit I had a full medical category for many years and aesthetic body weight and habitus.  In 1991 I was required, like so many others, to undergo various immunisations and vaccinations in the space of one day which alarmed me because I knew from my training that what was being proposed conveyed very, very great risks.  I made my concerns known to the most senior colleague I could find at the time.  I was fairly roughly removed from the hangar by two RAF regiment guards and kept isolated in a corridor for one and a quarter hours or thereabouts while telephone traffic took place and then I was marched in front of a colleague who informed me reasonably curtly that the message from on high was that I should be seen to set an officerly example, bite the bullet and take the same jabs as the troops.  I reiterated again to him my concern that it was planned to give me the Pertussis vaccination.  I told him in no uncertain terms that I was already immune to it having had the disease naturally in my earlier life.  Nonetheless I was required to have it.  That plus anthrax...
THE CHAIRMAN:  Was that quite a normal way of ---? 
A.  No, contrary to all accepted medical opinion that I have ever heard or read…  I knew very well that service personnel had no right whatsoever to refuse treatment.  It was given as a direct order.  Dr Derek Hall, RAF medical personnel, 27 July 2004.
Certainly there must have been mental stress as the senior Army officers that you have seen described because being afraid that you are going to be attacked by these terrible weapons must have been very stressful.  [However,] it stretches one’s understanding of these things to believe that was the only issue.  I am absolutely convinced myself that a combination of all these chemicals has produced a series of severe illnesses among these people. 
DR JONES:  In your submission, Mrs Sigmund, you state: “I do not believe that the use of organophosphates or the possible exposure of soldiers and other workers to nerve gas could be the sole cause of all the symptoms...”  That is a fairly strongly stated position.  What led you to that position?  
A.  My experience with farmers who had been exposed, as far as we know, only to organophosphate pesticides in sheep dipping who had similar symptoms but not nearly the range that has been reported by Gulf veterans and perhaps of not the same severity.   I talked to doctors too.  We have a great friend who is a specialist in anaesthetics and we discussed this subject in great depth.  He said that he does believe that the OPs could have exacerbated the reaction to perhaps the multiple vaccines that were given to people but just an exposure to OPs would not have caused the range and severity of symptoms experienced.  Elizabeth Sigmund, since 1967 and for some years secretary of the Working Party on Chemical and Biological Weapons, 28 July 2004.  
Yes, the oil and smoke exposure, which anyone considering that would say it must have some effect on their health because they were inhaling droplets of oil which are laced with carcinogens and heavy metals; they were bathing in it; it was raining oil; they were blackened over; they could not see because of the smoke; they were inhaling all the smoke.  Malcolm Hooper, Emeritus Professor of Medicinal Chemistry at the University of Sunderland and Chief Scientific Adviser to the Gulf War Veterans, 28 July 2004.
As you know, in Khamisiyah low-level sarin gas was released inadvertently and there has been a huge debate in the United States.  How did that impact?  Where did that plume go?  I know that is an issue that you are dealing with as well.  The history of the question of how many coalition troops were exposed to chemical nerve agents in the Gulf is a very sorry one.  For five years the Pentagon denied that our soldiers had been exposed to any chemical warfare agents.  Finally, in June 1996, after being forced to admit that there were exposures, they suggested that the exposures were limited.  The defence department's first estimates were that 400 troops were exposed, then 20,000 troops.  In 1997 the defence department and the CIA gave us their best estimate that as many as 98,000 American troops could have been exposed to chemical warfare agents due to the destruction of the depot in Khamisiyah.  In 2000 the defence department changed the location affected by the Khamisiyah explosion.  So, while it reaffirmed its estimate of 100,000 being exposed, it changed the identity of 34,000 of the soldiers.  In other words, we really have not had good evidence as to where that plume went and what soldiers, whether American or British, were exposed.  Congressman Bernie Sanders, State of Vermont, USA, 2 August 2004.
It is a fact that the vaccine has injured more people than anthrax has.  Lawrence Halloran, Staff Director and Council of the Subcommittee on National Security and the Public Committee on Federal Reform, 2 August 2004.

The Czech Ministry of Defence confirmed the detection of chemical agents near the Iraqi border.  We... believe that this was as a result of the bombing and fall‑out from the instruction of the Iraqi chemical weapons research production storage facilities… We established in this investigation that chemical agent detectors used by US forces during the Gulf War were not sufficiently sensitive to detect sustained low levels of chemical agent and to monitor personnel for contamination.  Yet, these alarms continued to sound during the air war raids on the Iraqi chemical warfare research, storage and production infrastructure...  The levels of agent were sufficiently high to set off the detectors even though they were that insensitive to occupational and local exposure...
  Finally, we uncovered conclusive evidence that the United States shipped biological materials to Iraq which contributed to the Iraqi biological warfare programme... Despite the fact that the Czech, the French and some United States commanders were confirming that [the alarms] were sounding because of trace amounts of nerve agents in the air from the coalition bombing of Iraqi chemical facilities, storage depots and bunkers, the United States troops were repeatedly told that there was no danger.  Some reported to the Committee that in some cases they were told to turn the alarms off because they were sounding so often during the air war.  Many of these veterans were also subjected to a variety of preventive medicine measures, including the time‑compressed administration of multiple vaccines, individual vaccines of concern and nerve agent pre-treatment pills, all of which may play a role in the illnesses of particular individuals... I have seen some British veterans who received as many as 22 immunisations over an 18 day period and then they were not deployed...
  Pyridostigmine bromide at the NAP dose is supposed to do this in a reversible way so that it binds up these enzymes or receptors and  they are not available to the nerve agent.  After the threat passes, they become available again so that the person can use them.  After people had the NAPS tablets in the studies that were done, they also received diazepam.  They received antidotes to the pills themselves and that did not occur during the war.  You have this potential for illnesses being directly related to the pills.  James Tuite III, consultant, former Special Assistant to the Chairman of the US Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs for National Security and Dual‑use Export Policies, 2 August 2004.
France, the United Kingdom and the United States adopted different combinations of protective drugs and vaccines against the threat of chemical or biological exposure.  They employed these drugs and vaccines to various extents.  Some differences could be attributed to the nations having identified different threats.  For example, France did not identify a biological threat and did not use vaccines to protect against biological threats.  It reportedly relied more on protective gear than either the United States or the United Kingdom did.  Similarly, while the United Kingdom identified plague as a threat, the United States did not and therefore did not require immunisation of its troops against plague.  The three nations use or selection of medical countermeasures differed somewhat, even when they identified the same threat.  For example, the United Kingdom and the United States both identified botulinum toxin as a threat but the United Kingdom addressed it with antitoxin to be given after exposure, the United States with investigational botulinum toxoid vaccine to be administered before exposure. Finally, the use of medical countermeasures for biological and chemical threats varied within and across national commands.  For example, official report and survey data show that the United States administered botulinum toxoid vaccine to only a small portion of its forces.  The United Kingdom reported that it administered the first anthrax injection to more than 75 per cent of its deployed forces, fully vaccinating some units.  Keith Rhodes, chief technologist at the [US] Government Accountability Office, 2 August 2004.
This vaccine, even though it was not approved, you would get a court-martial if you did not take it, and you are supposed to be given one shot a month over six months, but they would give soldiers six shots in one month going into combat and the mercury levels in the body far exceeded levels which would not do you damage, so there are things like that.  Ross Perot,  3 August 2004.
Up until the last five or six years nobody thought very much about what the reaction and prospects would be for someone exposed to inhalational anthrax.  I think we thought about it and the early anthrax vaccine was largely developed against cutaneous anthrax...  If you do not carefully record what vaccines an individual got at what point in time and what happened to them later, you cannot answer that question, and although the DOD has said, coming out of the experience of what we have reported on the first Gulf War into the current conflict in Iraq, that they were going to keep better records, the urgency of the deployment of troops, and in our case a huge number of troops from reserve and guard regiments which was contemplated from a doctrinal point of view but not contemplated from a reality test point of view, I think when we get around to looking at it, and we probably will in a year or two or three, not necessarily my work but somebody, I think we are going to find that the record‑keeping fails us again with respect to actually tracking what has happened to individuals...
DR JONES: It did lead, as far as I can make out, to situations in which vaccines and inoculations were given with no prior documentation of what that particular soldier had had before?  
A.  Yes.  DR JONES:  Which is highly undesirable?
A.  Right.  
Nancy Kingsbury, US Government Accountability Office, 3 August 2004.
A scud missile burst above my position and I collapsed some time after that.  It has been my belief since then that some of those missiles were, in fact, loaded with chemical warheads…  I put this down to the scud event primarily, but also quite possibly taking the NAPS pills after the event because they were nerve agent pre-treatment sets to be taken before.
THE CHAIRMAN: How did you get the NAPS pills?  They were issued to you by whom? 
A.  By the company. 
Andrew Mason, civilian contractor of British Aerospace, 3 August 2004.

When you actually get down to the nitty-gritty and start looking at the FDA inspection reports of the plant, then you throw up your hands and you are quite concerned because you see that none of the procedures that should have been followed in a vaccine manufacturing organisation were being followed, not only for anthrax vaccine but there were enormous numbers of quality control failures in the United States in all the products that were made at that factory.  We thought we were the only ones with that problem but you apparently had some similar problems here in the UK because your manufacturing facility also had to be shut down and revamped… [I] start[ed] seeing that there had been a whole series of these various adjuvant boosters that had been used which took a vaccine that was of very low efficacy and turned it into a high efficacy vaccine and none of these immune boosters are licensed in the United States and I do not believe that they are licensed in the UK either.  So, they were used in animal experiments and they subsequently have not been licensed.  Dr Meryl Nass, Mount Desert Island Hospital, Maine, USA, 1 September 2004.



3. Symptoms and effects on veterans
Out of those 53,000 personnel something of the order of 5,000 to 6,000 have reported illnesses they attribute to service in the Gulf... We think that many veterans suffer in silence for fear of affecting their on‑going service careers.  Over 630 veterans have died since the end of the Gulf conflict.  
John Nicol, Flight Lieutenant, 12 July 2004. 
Out of 85,000 people over the age of 55 you could expect three to be diagnosed with Motor Neuron Disease.  From the 56,300 British Gulf War veterans innoculated to go the Gulf eight of them have become diagnosed with MND, four of whom have since died.  Mrs Samantha Thompson, widow of Petty Officer Nigel Thompson, 12 July 2004. 
I was found to have the very rare illness in young men called osteoporosis where my bones are actually wasting away.  They are getting worse year to year.  I started off as 25 years old when I was diagnosed with it and I had a bone density of 68 per cent and I now have a bone density of 54 per cent.  I have since then broken my ribs, I have broken my kneecap, I have broken my shoulder and there is practically no chance that my condition is going to get any better.  Alex Izett,  Corps of the Royal Engineers, 12 July 2004.[The] neurologist at my local health authority saw me for ten minutes and said, “It appears like you have Multiple Sclerosis."  Noel Baker, First Battallion, 12 July 2004. I found that I was having memory loss and concentration and I was constantly having to write things down... I have had irritable bowel syndrome since; joint problems.  Richard Sharpe, RAF, 12 July 2004.The early symptoms included rapid weight loss, no appetite, disabling stomach cramps which lasted for a few minutes to half an hour, general and prolonged fatigue, lethargy, lack of physical endurance, headaches, feelings of claustrophobia, increase in perspiration, being very irritable and moody, bowel problems that ran from diarrhoea and constipation and vice-versa, lack of concentration and general loss in confidence… I have twice the recommended levels of mercury in my blood. Once it has binded itself to the muscle tissues, the body cannot extract it from the muscle because of the binding nature of mercury.  So, the body is constantly being distressed because the immune system is constantly attacking the foreign matter in the body.  Russell Walker, RAF, 12 July 2004.Two of my electricians collapsed with high fever and severe respiratory distress.  They were taken back to the accommodation and left for three days with no medical treatment because the Americans were not to be told what inoculations we had had … I have suffered five heart attacks and I am also suffering unstable angina...  I and a lot of other people found that taking these tablets gave us severe gastric problems, intestinal problems, diarrhoea.  Also people’s moods changed.  You found people becoming very aggressive to one another. Richard Turnbull, RAF, 19 July 2004.I had a recurring sore throat, bad stomach cramps, headaches, night sweats that had a strange sort of smell, and a numb tingling pins and needles sensation in my arms, legs and the back of my head.  I constantly felt tired.  I could not eat properly.  If I put food in my mouth I began to heave or threw up.  I did not have the strength, energy or stamina that I used to have.  At the end of a day shift I would go to bed for a few hours because I was exhausted.  I began falling asleep on nights.  I would go out for a short run and by the time I came back it felt like I had run a marathon... I left the Air Force in 1992 and since then I have been sacked from eight different jobs... I would actually put myself in dangerous situations where I could be harmed.  Anwen Humphreys, RAF, 19 July 2004.

In 1990 my unit was vaccinated at short notice to deploy to the Gulf to replace units from my base during August 1990... On two occasions I assaulted two members of my unit.  That was totally out of character for me... I began developing bowel problems, fatigue problems, concentration and memory problems...   I was given a formal warning for not socialising with my colleagues... I then absented myself without leave for 77 days... Several psychiatrists were seen, in excess of eight or nine, and I spent two and a half months approximately in the psychiatric unit as an inpatient… The loss of [my] baby [due to brittle bone syndrome] caused my fifth attempt at suicide.  
Keith Paul, RAF, 19 July 2004.

On returning to the UK I was told that everyone that had known me beforehand had noticed a big change in me.  I had become very sulky, moody, did not want to socialise with friends, even in my own home.  My fitness started to suffer.  I was finding it harder to participate in sports… The following is a list of some of my problems: arthritis, chronic fatigue, irritable bowel syndrome, major depressive disorder, general anxiety disorder including paranoia, post traumatic stress disorder, skin rashes, flashbacks, (low-flying helicopters and shooting stars remind me of Scuds and Patriots); night sweats, loss of libido, burning semen, mild incontinence.  Just to remind you, I am only 36 years old.  
Michael Capps, Royal Corps of Transport, 19 July 2004.

He has attempted suicide on several occasions and has it all planned out, how he would do it in the future… He takes seven different medications at the moment, a total of 29 tablets a day; his medication is constantly changing and sometimes he takes more.  He cannot be left alone at all as he is unsafe.  He has vacant spells and often does not know what he is doing.  He cannot work because of his disabilities… Mike’s problems have severely affected our relationship in the past, mainly due to Mike’s inability to feel any emotions.  Sometimes the smallest thing will set off a rage.  He has smashed several items around the house, ranging from cups to knocking doors off hinges… Twinned with Mike’s increasingly diminishing libido and fear of ejaculation which causes an intense burning pain, our love life is almost non-existent… My husband has gone from being a lovely, caring family man, always game for a laugh, often the life and soul of a party, to being a housebound agoraphobic who does not care and cannot care about his own life or the lives of his family.  He feels that we would all be better off without him.  He is a young man trapped in the body of an old, infirm man... It has taken an immense effort for him to come here today... [We hope that the Gulf War Syndrome] gets recognised, for our children more than anything.  The future is what is important now and, like I say, that it is recognized. We [must not] have to fight all the time to get the benefits we get.  
Mrs Deborah Capps, wife of the previous veteran, 19 July 2004.We were instructed to form a single file and the medics then administered the vaccinations... I began to suffer from lower back pain, loss of appetite, irritable bowel, joint and chest pain.  After discharge these symptoms became more aggressive and frequent.  Other symptoms also developed, such as palpitations, general body weakness, clicking joints, night sweats and muscle spasms... My arms, my knees, everywhere, every joint in my body almost, clicking.  It is really sore, especially in the morning time when I get up... Mood swings have destroyed my family... Before I came out of the Army – that was one of the reasons why I have been pushed out - I had rounds in my weapon.  I had rounds taken off me on guard by my commanding officer who could see that there was something not quite right.  Hakim Tella, Royal Artillery, 19 July 2004.

I can recall failing an Army BFT three mile run within a few months of returning from the Gulf, struggling with a tight chest and wheezing and reporting sick to the medical officer and then being placed on remedial physical training together with at least ten other soldiers who also failed the run.  Ever since that time over the years, I am aware of repeatedly catching any cold that is going which will infect my chest... Throughout this time, I have suffered fatigue, tiredness and headaches... I have been seen by Consultant Physician Dr Chauhan who gives strong medical opinion that my illness and symptoms of repeated infections, ME (chronic fatigue syndrome) and ill-defined conditions and hypertension are a consequence of my Gulf War Service.  I have also recently been seen by Dr Myhill who is a specialist in ME and immune system disorders.  She is convinced that all of my illnesses are attributable to Gulf War exposures and that my whole immune system and metabolism have been damaged… My main concern is my breathing, my respiratory problems…  Fatigue.  Even on four hours [work], I was coming home to my wife and two young children completely worn out... I feel like a 35-year old man in the mornings, and at night I feel twice my age...
DOCTOR JONES:  What about making the journey up to London?  Has that proved a great effort for you?
A.  It has.  
Mark McGreevy, Royal Signals, 19 July 2004.He developed a pneumonia-type illness on 19 January while he was out there, photophobia and everything like that, and he was treated while he was out there.  It was diagnosed as bronchial pneumonia, so they started antibiotics... One morning, it was weird, there was something wrong with his eyes – one was up there and one down there; he could not see anything and they thought he had a brain tumour...  By the tests, it showed that he had neuropathy …  The way it was explained to me was that his brain cells were degenerating quicker than they were regenerating and that were was nothing we could do about it. He could put his hands in boiling water and he would not know.  He would not know the difference until you said, “You have blisters on your hands.”  Carol Avison, widow of a 24-year regular soldier “[who] started off as a private and worked up to a major”, 19 July 2004. 

I have not been able to work for thirteen years and I have been told I will never work again... There was a job where I took up as a fruit delivery driver and I lasted there for one day.  The second day I just did not bother going in because I simply could not handle it... I have just been in and out of psychiatric institutions for the last thirteen years with these problems.  Alvin Pritchard, Queen's Dragoon Guards, 19 July 2004.I would like to tell you about my husband who sadly committed suicide in 2002.  He had 21 years' service with the forces and saw action in a number of places round the world before he went to the Gulf war.  We were married for 23 years so it was not a new situation at all... He was fit, active, a runner, a windsurfer, a surfer, a cyclist, he had a long service, a good conduct medal, he never had any problems, was a very outgoing sort of person.  When he returned from the Gulf he returned very quiet, and within a short period of time he started to suffer problems.  His speech deteriorated and became very slurred and it continued like that.  He became very withdrawn.  He began to have memory problems, nightmares, he used to wake up in the middle of the night sweating so much that we had to change the bed, and in the end we began to sleep separately for a while ‑ in the same room but in separate areas - because he just used to absolutely wake up soaking wet at night.  During the day he used to have flashbacks, dizzy spells –
THE CHAIRMAN:  What do you mean by "flashbacks"?
A.  Well, it was almost like waking nightmares sometimes.  All of a sudden something would trigger him and he would literally start to put his head in his hands and shout "I cannot stand this any more.  They are coming, they are coming again", and particularly as the second Gulf war started this became more and more frequent.  He had occasional blackouts... He did have some unexplained rectal bleeding as well… He destroyed our home and our garden.  He spraypainted every wall, floor, ceiling in the house, threw bleach everywhere, slashed all the furniture, took everything he could possibly remove out of the house into the garden and burnt it.  He weedkillered the complete garden which had up until that point been a real pride and joy to him and a real refuge, and destroyed it completely…  He appeared to be at the spearhead most of the time and on one particular occasion he went down a road called the Basra Strip which had recently been bombed which he was absolutely horrified by because he said there were literally burning bodies hanging out.  As I say he was a very caring man and certainly on his return the one thing that really hit him very hard was seeing the children, and certainly he was one of the first people into Kuwait.  He wrote about the oil fires, and he took photographs as well that he brought back while he was there of the oil fires, and he could not believe the total destruction that was going on and it weighed very heavily with him.  Once he returned, within a few months he never spoke of it again.  He would never speak of it again…
SIR MICHAEL DAVIES: How old was he when he died?
A.  Forty-eight
.  Louisa Graham, a veteran's widow, 19 July 2004.It was the pilots I was flying with that started to report me for all manner of errors and omissions in the air. Coupled with a whole series of motor accidents, the Air Force eventually grounded me and stopped me flying...  I was thrown out of the Air Force on compulsory redundancy even though we were short of flight engineers.  It was not a medical discharge… They did discover there that I had a missing left kidney. When I was at St Thomas's Hospital the radiologist, who was using an ultrasound scanner on me, called his colleague over and he said something like "Here's another one". They explained to me that they were getting a lot of veterans through with kidney problems.  I asked them what I should do next and they, quite rightly, said they were not supposed to talk to patients but suggested I had an internal examination into the bladder to see if there were two feeds coming into the bladder which suggests there should be two kidneys there.  This was refused by MAP who said it was not necessary. The only further test they did was an IVU, where I was injected with something and I then stood in front of an X‑ray plate which gave an image of my body with a very clear right kidney but a black hole where the left kidney should be. The consultant wrote a report saying that it was probably a lesion from birth...
  In 2000 I read in a copy of the Sandy Times (newsletter of the Gulf Veterans Association) a letter by a lady named Sylvia McCormack. She said that her partner had been diagnosed by MAP as having a birth defect with his kidneys, but he was now under another specialist who stated it could not possibly have been a birth defect. One of his kidneys was the size of a five-month foetus and the chap had done two and a half thousand parachute jumps which would have killed him with a kidney like this. I then contacted her and she said she had already had over 100 Gulf veterans contact her to say that they had been diagnosed with birth defects in their kidneys by MAP…
  When I sit down a lot I get terrible backaches.  Whenever I am on my feet for more than a few hours I find I can hardly walk.  I get such pains in my legs and joints, my whole body aches, and I get very confused.  I make a lot of errors... I have blackouts.  I have periods where I suddenly come out of a trance.  I do not know where I am, I do not know what I have done that day, I do not know what I am supposed to be doing... I cannot remember what I did in the morning.  People come and talk to me and I cannot remember having conversations, and because of the lack of memory I become very confused with the things I do... I have days when I feel very confident, when everything goes well for me and I feel I should be in a proper job, and then I have these breakdowns where I get overloaded if I try and do too much at once, and I completely break down and I get into terrible rages. 
Adrian Willson, RAF, 19 July 2004.

I was anxious, I became a little depressed, and a bit concerned for my future health in general... I received a telephone call from the brother of a very good friend of mine, my best friend, and he informed me that my best friend had committed suicide while suffering from depression.  [He] had served in the Gulf War with 205 General Hospital in Riyadh... My blood pressure was taken by the charge nurse and found to be extremely high.  I think the diastolic was more than 120... When the day came to return to work, I could not do so.  I froze and became very anxious... I again saw my GP and a diagnosis of depression and anxiety was made.  I was started on treatment and eventually returned to work after a five-month absence...  For the next year I remained at work, but tended to have multiple short periods of sick leave.  However, during this time my anti-depressant requirements had increased, as had my anti-hypertensive therapy.  In spring 2002 I was on sick leave again…  I would have poor memory and poor concentration, irritability and panic attacks...  It became obvious to me at that time that my anaesthetist's career was over… THE CHAIRMAN: A number of veterans were giving their primary symptoms as something like asthma, shortage of breath; and others were saying that their primary symptoms were muscular – either their backs were bad or their joints were aching.  Is the Dr Haley theory that that could all be due to damage to the brain? A.   Yes.  
Dr Nigel Humphrey Graveston, Chair of the National Gulf Veterans and Families Association, 33 Field Hospital RAMC at Al Jubail in Saudi Arabia. Consultant anaesthetist in the army, 19 July 2004.

He told us that he had received a concoction of drugs, including the anthrax injection and NAP tablets... When Paul came out of the Army his moods became very upsetting for the family.  He was very agitated and would often snap at the lightest of things, which was very out of character.  Paul started to become ill after around nine months of leaving the Army.  It started with slight rashes over his body, then he had convulsions... The doctor told our parents there was a problem in Paul’s brain, which was best left alone.  Paul was admitted to Monsall Hospital for over six weeks with a rash all over his body, and at one point he had lost 50 per cent of skin through an unknown allergy according to the doctors.  Paul suffered from many rashes in the following years and started to fit a lot more often.  He was put on medication for the fits, and steroids for the unknown rashes, and as a result of the steroids Paul began to have problems with his bones.  He started to walk with a limp... He was told he had a brain tumour and was given radiotherapy.  The doctors told him he had probably had it for about two years.  The radiotherapy did not work so Paul then received chemotherapy.  The doctor told Paul there wasn’t much more they could do for him and he was given between 6-12 months to live.   
Lisa Mates.  From her written statement to the Inquiry about her brother, Paul Carr, who died in August of 1997, 19 July 2004.

In 2002 I was tested by Professor Albrecht Schott for chromosomal aberrations, basic biological damage caused by depleted uranium.  I showed the highest level of damage of all those tested... I was showing readings in 2002 of three times the biological damage than the firemen that attended the Chernobyl disaster, and they were tested at the time of the disaster, not 11 years later…  I do have memory problems... I have got loss of hearing, double vision, loss of peripheral vision, excessive thirst, difficulty in breathing, concentration problems, high blood pressure, pain in the muscles and joints that are described as fibromyalgia... I had to give up driving because of poor concentration.  Oh, and the other thing I suffer from is fits and black-outs and involuntary movements... I was diagnosed with lymphoma.  It was later downgraded to monoclonal gammopathy of unknown significance... I asked Dr Chris Busby, who is on the Government’s Depleted Uranium Oversight Board.  An extract of his reply is:  “You have received a hefty dose of ionising radiation.  Such doses are capable of causing serious biological and clinical harm.  This suggests that you have some material in you that is continuing to cause this level of chromosome damage and has been causing this damage since you were first exposed.  In my view, this can only be insoluble depleted uranium particles trapped in your body, following your exposure in the Gulf War 1991.  This is supported by the measurements made by the Uranium Medical Project and published on 15 March 2000, which showed that there was measurable DU in your urine”... From the Imperial Cancer Research site, I quote:  “MGUS is a condition related to myeloma.  MGUS, like myeloma, is most common over the age of 70 years.  Causes:  The only well-established associations are with radiation…  Among atomic bomb survivors the relative risk of developing myeloma increased with the radiation dose.”  I was about 42 at the time of my diagnosis...  I use a wheelchair when I am out for a long time so I have support for my neck, in particular if I am going great distances…   All of my friends that I made in the Gulf are either ill or dead.  My best friend, who I palled up with for buddy-buddy, when you are checking each other’s gas mask, was one of the first to commit suicide on his return. THE CHAIRMAN:  What was his name?  (Pause) [the witness breaks down]  It escapes you for the moment.  Never mind.  Mr Bristow, may I say again that we are very, very grateful for your help.  I am sorry to have asked you so abruptly for his name. DR JONES: Perhaps you could include it with the remaining documents you are going to send to our secretary.
THE CHAIRMAN:  At any rate, he was one of a number of your friends who are no longer here or still ill.  Thank you so much.
[His name was] Mick Charman.  
Raymond Bristow, military warrant officer theatre technician and combat medical technician, both Class 1, 19 July 2004. 

He had memory problems and did not remember things well enough... he thought it was the NAP tablets and possibly the innoculations they were given before the war... He began having tingles through his body, and eventually in March 2000 he had his first epileptic seizure... He could not work any more; it was impossible – he could not concentrate.  He could not remember things... His whole nervous system seems to have been affected in one way and another.  When he had these tingles, he would say it went right through him, and then he would come out in a sweat and go grey, and be like this for quite some time.  He was not doing anything at the time; he would probably be seated.  It was not as if he was engaged in something stressful at the time; it just came, as it were, from nowhere.  
Mrs Janet Mary Calvert, wife of a metereologist in the RAF, now affected by dementia, 19 July 2004.In a period of 24 hours he completed what he said was the whole gamut of vaccinations, including anthrax.  As far as I know, they were not recorded on his military documents.  He had some in the afternoon and some the next morning.  He... always said that he took the NAP tablets.  I noticed very, very quickly, that he found it increasingly more difficult to complete the work in the allotted time.  Mr Kenneth Ingermals, who was working with Mrs Calvert's husband at RAF Strike Command, 19 July 2004. 

I was just unable to hold a job down.
THE CHAIRMAN:  What was the difficulty in holding jobs down?
I was not able to concentrate.  My memory was getting worse.  I was missing things. I receive a 30 per cent war pension for fibromyalgia, irritable bowel syndrome, depressive disorder... I have got back problems – two fused vertebrae, discs that keep popping out;  I have got arthritis in my knees.  
Andrew Hazard, Royal Engineers, 19 July 2004.

I have had contact from many, many farmers, well over 500 farmers.  I recognised some of the symptoms that the Gulf veterans were describing as being very similar to sheep dip symptoms.  One of my sheep dip contacts was in contact with a pilot in the RAF who had a feeling that there was something to do with vaccinations that was wrong. The major [symptoms] are chronic fatigue.  It is not just ordinary tiredness, it is an overwhelming muscular fatigue.  When you take exercise you get this awful fatigue.  Muscle pains, joint pains, even bone pain at excruciating levels.  Childbirth has got nothing on this, I can tell you, and I have done both.  Also there are what are described as neuro-psychological things… You get terrific mood swings, an inability to concentrate.  I used to read a paragraph and I would read it and read it and read it and nothing would sink in.  Problems with vision; your eyesight would go blurred.  You would have what are described as autonomic symptoms, your digestive system would be upset, incontinence, bladder incontinence. Quite a lot of farmers have described chest pain and have developed heart conditions, and indeed I have as well…
THE CHAIRMAN:  How soon did your symptoms come on? A.  About three weeks after I was exposed to sheep dip… I was pretty ill for five or six years… We are told it is all in our heads; but in fact it is not.  I am afraid I have got well because I have been able to pay for treatment… People have not looked at these guys’ brains.  The only fellow who has is Haley in America and he found that there were significant differences.  He took a pair of identical twins, one who had been to the Gulf and one who had not, and he found there were significant differences in the two men’s brains.  
Countess of Mar, 21 July 2004.

The British Medical Journal published a medical research results of a Study of the Reproductive Health of UK Gulf War Veterans and the Health of Their Children as a result of a substantial body work by the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.  This demonstrated that there would seem to be - and there is always a bit of doubt there of course - “a firm correlation between service in the 1991 operations and infertility problems.”  
Paul Tyler MP,  21 July 2004.

Health-wise I was getting headaches and tiredness but it was more mental state, I think, then because I was starting to get depressed.  I was looking forward to getting home but as soon as I got home --- I had been home a week and we went straight on leave and I was drinking really heavily...   I lost interest in everything... I left the Army and I worked for ten years.  When I first came out I went driving with a company, but then I was starting to fall asleep all the time, on the motorway and that, and I was scaring myself.  I had to stop and sleep all the time because of the tiredness… I was coming home from work, I was sleeping and then just going straight back to work.  I was sleeping on nights as well.  Whenever we had breaks on nights I was falling asleep then as well.  I was sleeping all day and still falling asleep at night...  I tried to kill myself... I collapsed and I woke up five weeks later in hospital.  My immune system had shut down...
THE CHAIRMAN:  What was the explanation for that that the doctors gave you?   
A.  The doctors cannot tell me.  All they can tell me is --- it was herpes simplex, which is a cold sore, and he said any normal person would have just fought it off but because my immune system had shut down it attacked my liver, it attacked my kidneys and it went up my spinal fluid into my brain and I got a brain disease, encephalitis…  I am on blood pressure tablets now, anti-depressants.  I am on tablets that protect my stomach.  I am on folic acid tablets...  Nobody can tell me what has happened to me.  My doctors cannot tell me what has happened to me.  I have got a ten-year old daughter.  They cannot tell me whether it is going to happen to me again.  Basically I just wanted some answers more than anything else...
MRS BARBER:  He was on kidney dialysis while he was in hospital.
DR JONES:  It was kidney dialysis?
MRS BARBER:  Yes, but they told me, when they took a sample of his liver, that he definitely was not going to survive because it was so rare, what happened to him.  They actually counselled him for HIV.  That is what they thought he had, because it was so rare for his immune system to be so low.  But he did not have HIV.
DR JONES:  Since you recovered from that illness have you had any problem fending off other infections?
MR BARBER. My headaches are a lot worse and basically since my illness I am just tired all the time.  I just sleep most of the day and night, but I am not working now.  Aches and pains.  I got a cold at Christmas, just a normal cold.  I used to just fight it off, but it stuck with me for quite a long time.  
Michael Barber, Royal Corps of Transport, 21 July 2004.

I started experiencing short term memory loss and unusual mood swings, becoming aggressive for no reason at all.  My wife admitted to me that she had seen a change occurring in me for some time.  When I began to experience cramps, pins and needles in my limbs and hot flushes, I knew from having read other veterans’ accounts of ill health that something was not right. THE CHAIRMAN:  You have put here that the bad period was from about 1997 through to 2001?   A.  My wife will testify to that... I was very reluctant to make known my symptoms because I did not think anybody would have listened to me, and there was the added problem of being grounded if they did find something, and I enjoyed the job I was doing.  I knew there was going to be an end to my flying career eventually because of my termination of service in 2000.  Maybe it was unprofessional not to tell them but I was enjoying what I was doing and I could put up with it, and I think really I came to a crisis in those years where it was really bad. SIR MICHAEL DAVIES: Chronic fatigue and so on? A.  The mood swings and cramps, pins and needles were really bad.  I just could not drive anywhere for more than half an hour because it became so intense.  With my hands on the steering wheel and my feet in the position they would be in I found it very difficult.  I could not kneel down for too long.  
Geoffrey Brown, RAF, 21 July 2004.

I joined the Army as an apprentice tradesman in 1984 at the age of 16, so I was a boy soldier.  I served in the 1991 Gulf conflict and I subsequently became ill with chronic fatigue syndrome...  I was finally medically discharged in February 2001, and I was categorised as permanently unfit for any form of Army service.  My wife Alison, who never served in forces, is also now suffering from chronic fatigue syndrome.  We both tested positive for a mycoplasmal infection last year, which I will come on to later.  Both of us were in perfect health prior to the Gulf conflict...  In Christmas 1992 I suffered a flu-like illness.  Although I thought I had got over it I do not think I actually did.  During 1993 I became very susceptible to viruses and became increasingly fatigued.  In October 1993, due to the fatigue, I was forced to give up sport of all types.  From October 1993 to January 1994 I suffered recurrent tonsillitis and received various courses of antibiotics.  This led to a tonsillectomy in May 1994.  An important note: the major on the operating team came on a bedside visit the next day and told me that on removing my tonsils they were the worst that she had ever seen... I was doing as little as three hours a day for approximately two years, doing paperwork only.  I could not do the fitting and carrying work any more.  During the last eight years, even though I eventually managed to get back to full days and my condition in the early days did improve, I was still physically unable to carry out my primary trade as a vehicle mechanic…  I also suffer from mood swings, irritability and all the additional symptoms related to chronic fatigue syndrome – muscle pains, joint ache, short term memory loss.  I have to write lists; otherwise I forget.  I can go down to the shop to get four things.  I get down there and I only get two because I have forgotten the other two.  Lack of concentration – it is very hard to focus.  It is interesting what Geoff Brown said a minute ago – the small triggers.  Boom: I am gone.  I can be there, come home from work very happy, not had a bad day; okay, I am very tired; work takes it out of me, but one of my kids will wind me up and I will just lose it completely for the smallest thing…  Quality of life.  I do not have any.  I work, come home, am tired, get at the kids ‑ that is it.  I basically work.  
Jason Bosworth, Ordnance Corps, 21 July 2004. 

After almost 14 years since the conflict my memory of my time in No 1 Armoured Division has faded except for specific images, smells and feelings that stay in my mind and haunt me on a daily basis.  These images include the carnage down the Basra Road, the barrage of artillery that took place before we went through, the burning oil wells that created the intense fog, and the feelings of isolation in being with people whom I did not know and the strange procedures they adhered to... When I returned from the Persian Gulf my mental state was far from what it should have been.  I would go down to the pub looking for a fight and if I could not find one then I would instigate one.  One particular evening I took offence at comments made by the landlord and threw a heavy bottomed glass through the pub window.  On another occasion I was choked unconscious after someone put their arm around my throat in order to stop me beating to death a member of the RAF regiment who had given me a punch... I was developing pains to the joints of my feet, hands and knees... I developed a rash around my neck, chest and torso.  I was suffering severe stomach problems and, worst of all, my wife had a miscarriage… I was classed as workshy, untidy, an inexperienced member of the team and instantly taken a dislike to by my senior NCO.  I began to have difficulty in organising myself and dealing with what were really quite normal situations.  I was suffering from feelings of depression, immense stress and anxiety which led to a complete mental breakdown... I suffer from chronic fatigue, my body is in a perpetual state of tiredness, I have no energy, my chest, arms and legs feel leaden and take great effort to move.  I feel as if my body is continually fighting a virus or infection.  Even if the will is there, I cannot motivate myself no matter how hard I try... 
Gastro intestinal problems.  Since returning from the Gulf my body has developed a chronic intolerance to foods and medication.  These result in severe diarrhoea, stomach cramps and ‘flu-like symptoms. These have proved a real burden as it is not possible to accept any medication to alleviate the other problems…
Depression.  I feel I have lost all of the tools to deal with life.  My nervous state is very poor and I shake uncontrollably for no apparent reason.  I have a feeling of continual sickness in my stomach.  I have regular breakdowns where all I want to do is crawl into a corner and sob.  This often results in an attempt to hurt myself by repeatedly striking my head against the wall.  I do not want to continue living.  Joint pains.  I suffer with terrible joint pains in my knees, neck, feet, hands, ankles and elbows.  My joints make continual cracking and tearing meat sounds.  The pains allow me no comfort, the joints have to be frequently articulated, the resulting disabilities are in walking, writing, turning a door handle, taps, etc.  Poor sleep.  Sleep plays a big part in my life.  I am ever conscious of the amount of sleep I receive.  However, I have very poor sleep and the sleep I get provides little or no refreshment whatsoever.  (Pause [The witness breaks down])
THE CHAIRMAN:  I am very happy to read it out for you.
A.  I would like to read it, please. 
THE CHAIRMAN:  You shall. 
A.  Extreme reaction to viral infections.  My body seems to have lost the ability to fight simple viral infections well.  The common cold has a devastating effect on my body and lasts for many weeks.   Loss of hearing.  I have gone progressively deaf in both ears.  This problem occurs after a series of viral infections.  My hearing worsened during the period of infections and did not return.  The loss of hearing was made worse with each bout of the virus.  Tinnitus.  I suffer with chronic tinnitus all the time.  It is as if I am in an aviary with hundreds of chirruping birds.  Low sperm count.  After several tests it has been identified that I have a low sperm count and as a result I do not have any children.  I have a poor libido.  Photosensitivity.  I find any bright and intense light intolerable.  This includes sunlight, computer monitors and lights, etc.  Rectal problems.  I suffer from painful anal fissures and haemorrhoids and daily excrete blood from my anus.   Concentration.  I used to take great pride in my ability to successfully plan and organise highly responsible duties.  However, this has degenerated to a state where I now find it difficult to concentrate on more than one thing at once.  This results in a single‑mindedness that verges on the obsessive allowing me no peace and making the ability to switch off impossible.  This obsession with one particular subject matter is to the total detriment of everything else that is going on around me.  This lack in my ability to think somewhat laterally means that important issues are left to build up and as a result I am unable to deal with the added pressure and suffer incredible mental torment.  Bleeding gums.  My gums have bled constantly since returning from the Gulf.  Skin rashes.  I suffer with dry flaky skin around my neck, chest and torso.  This is prevalent all the time.  Chemical sensitivity.  I suffer from huge lumps under my armpit after using chemicals such as antiperspirants.   Lumps up my nose.  I frequently get lumps up my nose.  It was first thought these were polyps but no evidence was found during the tests… Three months ago I finally felt my life had become intolerable.  I had identified the rope and the location with which to hang myself.  I have been off work for three months and although I am still struggling with life I have yet to hang myself.  
Michael Roy Lingard, RAF, 21 July 2004.
In years after that [vaccination and spraying] my health got worse and worse.  In 1995, 1996, 1997 and 1998 it got worse.  It was as if I just went down in the depths of despair physically and mentally and I slowly but surely came out a little bit.  But between 1995 and 1998 were the worst years... I was off work for three months, late 1997‑1998, when I was really bad and then I reduced my hours to three or four days, and I think it was eighteen months to two years when I built it up to full time again... My marriage broke up... Like the previous gentleman said, I would do a day’s work, go home, and just collapse.  Lie on the bed, put a little light music on and not be able to do anything at all.  I would not sleep; I would just lie there.  For a period of two years I did not sleep at all, I would just lie on the bed.  I would not get any rest…  Flashbacks, if I hear a noise outside.  I am very hypersensitive to noise.  Nightmares.  Chronic fatigue.  The fatigue covers everything.  At the moment I have a level of fatigue where I shall be absolutely shattered when I get home tonight, but I had to do [it] today. Gerard Davey, RAF, 21 July 2004. 

I know men, for instance, from the Gulf who cannot go to a barbecue as the smell of burnt meat brings back the Basra road and it is overwhelming to them... I had one Gulf veteran in Coventry and he had been charged with breaking windows in Coventry police station.  He was smashing the windows and shouting,  “Come on out you Iraqi bastards”.  His mother said to me afterwards, “You know, he wasn’t in Coventry, he was in the Gulf.”... I met a young man who told me there were lots of Gulf Veterans in Scotland and they did not have anyone to speak to and he asked if I would do a clinic for them.  The first time I went there were about 20 young men and I looked around me and the thing that struck me was that half of them had walking sticks.  These were young men who had run for days for their regiments or boxed for their regiments and they had walking sticks.  Dafydd Alun Jones. Consultant Psychiatrist holding clinics for ex‑servicemen, 27 July 2004.

Six weeks later I was alarmed one morning to find that my central vision had disappeared... The bombshell was given to me that I had what appeared to be a malignant melanoma... [However] it did not turn out to be malignant; it was a benign lesion... And then the next thing that happened I was aware myself that my thought processes were not working properly.  Indeed this was commented on by my executive reporting officers but nobody mentioned a word to me about it.  There was no friendly chat or “come and have a talk”, nothing.  Then in sequence I got hit with an unusual form of pneumonia, rheumatoid arthritis, kidney stones, renal failure, combined hepato‑renal failure on one occasion, chronic anaemia, which was resistant to treatment.  The list just goes on and on.  My shape changed, my hands enlarged, my feet enlarged, the shape of my mandibles changed, my maxilla has changed, my cap size has increased.  Bones are supposed to cease growing at 25 and here I was at 43 with an expanding skeleton... My cap size which had been for 25 years seven and a quarter suddenly became greater than seven and a quarter, my operating glove size which was seven and a half became eight and a half, my shoe size went from eight to ten and a half, my shoulder tip to shoulder tip distance increased... I am virtually pre-leukaemic. I am due to start chemotherapy in 48 hours… I saw a lot of people in the initial phase, in laymen’s terms, who appeared to have been extremely sunburnt... but the sunburn did not settle.  They were left with descremating skin for months...
To this day I do not know whether they were suffering from ionising radiation toxicity or whatever but I know that I saw people with weird and wonderful symptoms that I could not explain.  I saw people coming in with neurological disorders which were inexplicable... I used to be a very proficient cryptic crossword enthusiast.  I cannot get my brain -- it is almost as if I have forgotten a language... I am getting worse.  There was a significant downturn from December 2002.  I took another turn for the worse at the end of October last year.  At the beginning of October I was still capable of washing and cleaning my car; by November I was not.  Then in terms of mobility since March of this year I have been extremely limited in walking and the only reason I have managed to walk across the road today is because I am on high dose steroids.  
Dr Derek Hall, RAF medical personnel, 27 July 2004.

If I could just draw your attention to this business of osteoporosis.  This is a finding which is extraordinary.  Young men do not get osteoporosis.  You see it in elderly men and post-menopausal women - that is where it gets its name as a major illness - but here there are young men with osteoporosis.  Why?… A very, very common feature of Gulf War Veterans is that many of them suffer from an obesity which is classically upper barrel obesity and very many of them have problems with sexual function.  They have got low libido and erectile dysfunction.  That seems be very widespread.  I think there is a case which involved only vaccines… inducing an autoimmune condition which damages the pituitary gland, and the consequence of that is osteoporosis, depressed growth hormone and mineralization of bone and teeth - there is a teeth problem with these guys as well - and the other one is the distribution of body fat and muscle, and then the gonadotyrophins responsible for controlling libido and erectile function.E 
Malcolm Hooper, Emeritus Professor of Medicinal Chemistry at the University of Sunderland and Chief Scientific Adviser to the Gulf War Veterans, 27 July 2004.26-32 per cent of all US veterans of the 1991 Persian Gulf War suffer from a pattern of symptoms, including fatigue muscle and joint pains, headache, cognitive and gastrointestinal problems over and above their counterparts who did not deploy to the Gulf.  This translates into between 180,000 to 220,000 of the 698,000 troops who served in the first Gulf War…  At the time, there was no acknowledgement that the initial effects of organophosphate poisoning, the chemical class in which many of the nerve agents and pesticides are grouped, are not immediately debilitating and deadly.  They include headache, fatigue, skin irritation, loss of appetite, dizziness, weakness, nervousness, nausea, perspiration, diarrhoea, eye irritation, insomnia, thirst, restlessness, irritation of the nose and throat, loss of weight, soreness of joints and changes of mood.  These symptoms were reported by many of the veterans we interviewed… Over the eight months following the initiation of Banking Committee investigation, Senator Riegle's office was contacted by over 1,000 Gulf War veterans directly.  In addition to the veterans from the United States, we were also contacted by sick veterans of the Canadian, British and Australian armed services who served in the Persian Gulf and who also suffered from this disabilitating syndrome.  James Tuite III, consultant, former Special Assistant to the Chairman of the US Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs for National Security and Dual‑use Export Policies, 2 August 2004.

The ultimate point is that those who were deployed to the Gulf are reporting illnesses 25 to 30 per cent greater than those who were not.  If we take 700,000 and we take the 100,000 that have been reporting, that constitutes a 25 to 30 per cent greater number than what we are seeing from other locales…
 Overall, the types of symptoms different veterans’ groups in the United Kingdom and the United States have reported are strikingly similar, even though veterans in these studies came from different countries and served in different locations in the Gulf War theatre.
We do not see the cross-interaction and the multiple sensitivities that can come from exposure to multiple chemicals.  We are going to have an extremely difficult time trying to figure out how we can treat now and prepare for the future.  We have to figure out as best we can: is it multiple vaccines at an accelerated rate with adjuvant that is not standardised acceptable?  Is it that you were in an environment where there were huge amounts of hydrocarbons in the atmosphere and you were breathing them in because of oil well fires?  Is it that you were using pesticides?  Were you wearing a yellow collar to keep the plumes out?  Keith Rhodes, chief technologist at the [US] Government Accountability Office, 2 August 2004.I talked to some of the wives of the ones who were employed and they said, “He’s just a mess.”  One wife said that her husband used to be the shop foreman before he went over to the war and now he works in the mail room.  They did not want to fire him because he is a hero, but he cannot work on the floor anymore because he is not up to it… There appears to be a complex web of causes, nobody would dispute that.  The theory with the most current support is that low level sarin, possibly in combination with organophosphates pesticides, were being used because they had a similar mode of action and the NAPS tablets, pesticides, DEET, all of this together somehow caused damage to these deep brain cells, particularly in soldiers with low PON type Q activity in their blood... So the VA then did their own study where they compared the deployed and the non‑deployed and they looked at all the ALS (Motor Neurone Disease) in those two groups and they got the same finding except that it is getting worse.  Robert W Haley, Professor of Medicine and Director of the Division of Epidemiology at the University of Texas, 2 August 2004.THE CHAIRMAN:  Can you describe your symptoms now?  Are they still continuing?    
A.  Yes, they do continue.  I am a very sweaty person and I have been for many years.  I do not sleep particularly well and I find it very hard to get to sleep.  I find it very hard to wake up because I do not feel refreshed after sleep.  I suffer a lot of what a lot of people have described as muscular pain, but I would say it is more to do with exertion and when I exert myself, then I ache considerably… The event was so striking when it did occur, everything in the locality wound up dead, I am afraid.   I lived in a British Aerospace accommodation block and shortly after the event I used to walk, but everything locally was dead.  Birds were on the floor, dead, starfish, dead under rocks.  There were huge amounts of washed-up jellyfish, all dead.  Everything in that locality died just after this event and I can only put it down to the fact that the scud had exploded there.  
Andrew Mason, civilian contractor of British Aerospace, 2 August 2004.

The question that the MRC posed was, “Were the veterans of the Gulf War at increased risk in terms of their offspring’s health and their own reproductive health?” Response rates were disappointing, I must say, in the sense that for men there was only around 50 per cent response overall. … For the men, we had almost 3,000 miscarriages reported by Gulf men and 1,500 miscarriages reported by ERA [non-deployed] men.  In terms of percentages that works out to 18 per cent of pregnancies ending in a miscarriage reported by Gulf men, 14 per cent ending in a miscarriage reported by the control group, the ERA men... It appears that there is a 40 per cent excess... [For] congenital malformation [the] difference [is]... 5.2 per cent [to] 3.5 per cent. [For infertility] we found again an excess of about 40 per cent:  seven per cent of men said they and their partners failed to achieve a pregnancy despite one year of trying and consulting a doctor compared with five per cent of the comparison group... We did find some evidence that there was a higher proportion of Gulf men with infertility who had abnormal sperm.  That is called teratospermia, but unfortunately the numbers were extremely small so, despite our large study, we could not conclude too much from it.
THE CHAIRMAN:  I see.  It is the number of people with teratospermia that is small.   
A.  Terribly small.  It is about six in the Gulf War.    It was 21 in the Gulf veterans and six in the non-Gulf veterans, so we are talking of very small numbers, but it is worth flagging up as something we cannot ignore but the confidence around that result is rather low.  The second piece of additional evidence is that the pregnancies fathered by Gulf veterans who did not report infertility problems, when we asked them how long it took to conceive this particular pregnancy, was longer for Gulf veterans than ERA... As I said in my conclusions, we found associations between increased risk of miscarriage, some odd malformations and infertility, and I think that is as far as I would go.  If you would like to call that a problem, yes, it is a problem...
THE CHAIRMAN:  I have not got your main paper yet but I have got the press release.  What it does not say here, but I am sure it does there, is the ratio between the Gulf War illnesses and the rest of the population at large.  You say in your second paragraph of the press release simply that Gulf War veterans were more likely to report mood swings, memory loss, lack of concentration, etc.  What was the actual ratio?  Is that in your paper?  
A.  Yes, it is, and it is 2.7.  This is for all things.  One or more new symptoms was 60.7 per cent in the Gulf versus 36.7 per cent in the non-Gulf
.  Dr. Pat Doyle, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and Head of the Department of  Epidemiology and Population Health, 10 August 2004.

Inquiry into Gulf War illnesses - London, July - September 20046. The medical profession
My husband] would not discuss it with me and his GP would not discuss things with me.  At the time when [my husband] became increasingly violent he was trying to get some help for him, and I contacted his own GP and the only answer I ever got was "I cannot discuss it with you.  Patient confidentiality".  Louisa Graham, a veteran's widow, 19 July 2004.

When I asked Dr Gabriel how many patients he had had through with kidney defects, he said, "We do not keep statistics" and I had quite an argument with him because I suggested that his job was to keep statistics.  He then threw back the Data Protection Act at me and said "I cannot keep statistics because I am not allowed to".  Adrian Willson, RAF, 19 July 2004.  

Like the majority of doctors, I knew next to nothing about this at that time.  I think that is something to be noted; that most doctors in this country know very, very little, if anything, about Gulf War Syndrome, and I think that is a major problem… One of my distinct impressions is, both having seen my general practitioner and my neurologist, is that they are very busy people.  They do not want yet another illness to foul their day.  Dr Nigel Humphrey Graveston, Chair of the National Gulf Veterans and Families Association, 33 Field Hospital RAMC at Al Jubail in Saudi Arabia. Consultant anaesthetist in the army, 19 July 2004.

We did go to the Gulf War veterans’ illnesses at St Thomas’s.  They were very polite and very concerned about Trevor’s state of health at the time – this was in 1999 – but when we walked in and we sat in the first office with the sister in charge, she said, “you do understand this has got nothing to do with the Gulf War?”  That was her first statement; that was before he had seen the doctor.  Mrs Calvert, wife of a metereologist in the RAF, now affected by dementia, 19 July 2004.
After a visit to my GP I was referred to a dermatological consultant with regard to my rash.  I had read in the newspaper about other Gulf War veterans coming down with similar symptoms, so I decided to show the consultant the newspaper cutting and ask his opinion.  The response I received was that of complete dismissal and contempt for the report, a situation that I have had to deal with on many occasions since that day.  The rash was diagnosed as Pityriasis versicolor and I suffer that to this day.  After witnessing the reaction of the consultant, it was some time before I visited my GP with my troubles again, and, when I finally did so, I made no mention of Gulf War syndrome… 
  The way in way patient details are communicated using utmost brevity between practitioners in no way allows for a complete picture to be drawn.  This has been the case regarding my series of illnesses.  Each consultant will identify conditions with which they can associate.  However, mention Gulf War Syndrome, and the effect is almost palpable.  Their eyes appear to glaze over and their tone of voice changes and a dismissive approach is taken… After visiting my doctor and explaining how I was feeling I was asked:  “Do you think you might be suffering from depression?”  I answered that I thought I was and he did nothing.  Realising the gravity of my situation, my wife and my father had to intercede on my behalf and contacted my GP.  I am now signed off work sick with depression.  Michael Roy Lingard, RAF, 21 July 2004.
I have worked with doctors for 24 years so I know what most of them are like ‑ good, bad and indifferent ‑ but when you go to your GP and she says “I do not know what to do with you, Mr Davey”.  She should not have done that in the first place.  If she did not know what to do with me, she should have kept it to herself and passed me on to another person who might be able to help.  You go to a neurologist because there is a chance you might have MS and he goes, “Mr Davey, do not make too much of your symptoms”. Gerard Davey, RAF, 21 July 2004.

One of the things that I found very distressing, both in the farmers, the 800 farmers who are on our database of Organophosphate Information Network, and the 5,000 suffers from Gulf War Illness, is that they went from doctor to doctor, sometimes ending up with a psychiatrist who did not understand what had happened to them, did not understand the toxicology and began to conclude that this was mental stress more than anything...  It was very interesting that the British Medical Association wrote a report in 1992 called Pesticides, Chemicals and Health, in which they did a survey of medical schools in Britain asking what toxicological training they gave to their young doctors, and the answers were, some of them did none, the majority between one and 12 hours – 12 was quite exceptional – which in a modern society, where we are subjected to chemicals all the time did not seem to the BMA, or indeed to me, to be enough… 
  This is from the University of East Anglia Medical School:  “Clearly organophosphates are an important source of problem at present, but one can concede that good sense will prevail and the organophosphates will disappear from use in due course. The information the students have on OPs will therefore become redundant”.  That has not happened yet.  He goes on to say:  “We therefore attempt to teach the students principles of recognising when there is a problem which they do not understand, and tracking down reliable information on it rapidly and efficiently.  I am therefore comforted by the thought that doctors contact your organisation for up-to-date information.  I would regard this as a minimum best practice.”  That is very flattering to us in one sense, but I still find it rather alarming that everyone from birth to the grave is subjected to high levels of chemical exposure in our society, and so one understand there is not time to educate doctors in everything, but certainly there should have been more education of doctors who were going to be looking at people exposed.  Elizabeth Sigmund, since 1967 and for some years secretary of the Working Party on Chemical and Biological Weapons 28, July 2004.