- May 19, 2004
- Reaction score
- Political Leaning
- Libertarian - Right
NEW YORK (AP) _ The Justice Department wants a Brooklyn federal judge to dismiss a lawsuit that would force a re-examination of the use of the Vietnam War defoliant Agent Orange.
The class action civil suit was filed last year on behalf of Vietnamese citizens, who said American chemical companies who supplied the military with the substance committed war crimes.
The suit seeks possibly billions of dollars in damages from the companies and an environmental cleanup of Vietnam because of the toxic chemical dioxin contained in the substance.
But Justice department lawyers filed a brief in January saying the suit is a dangerous threat to the president's power to wage war, The New York Times reported in Monday editions.
"The implications of plaintiffs' claims are astounding," said the government's filing. "As they would (if accepted) open the courthouse doors of the American legal system for former enemy nationals and soldiers claiming to have been harmed by the United States Armed Forces."