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

Agencies and organizations[]

Army agencies and schools[]

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

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


Modern chemical depots[]

Active bases

Johnston Atoll Chemical Agent Disposal System (JACADS) in 2000

Closed bases

Older chemical weapons program locations[]

Treaties, laws and policy[]

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


M134 cluster bomblets in an Honest John warhead

Canceled weapon projects[]

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

  • BIGEYE bomb
  • XM-736 8-inch binary projectile


Declared stockpile and other weapons[]

An M55 rocket being destroyed in 1990

Stockpiled chemical agents[]

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

Agents stockpiled at the time of Chemical Weapons Convention:

Older chemical agents[]

Other equipment[]

Exercises, incidents, and accidents[]

Operations and exercises[]



Chemical testing[]

See also[]


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