January 16, 2011 posted by Denise Nichols:
Professor Simon Wessely is director of the King’s Centre for Military Health Research in London and an adviser to the Ministry of Defence. He does not believe Gulf War Syndrome exists as a distinct illness.
Even so, he has no doubt that a significant number of Gulf veterans became ill as a direct result of their military service.
“The evidence is incontrovertible that there is a Gulf War health effect,” he says.
“Something to do with the Gulf has affected health and no-one serious has ever disputed that.
“Is there a problem? Yes there is. Is it Gulf War Syndrome or isn’t it? I think that’s a statistical and technical question that’s of minor interest.”
The Ministry of Defence echoes Professor Wessely’s view.
An MoD spokeswoman told BBC News: “We have long accepted that some veterans of the Gulf conflict are ill and that some of this ill health may be related to their Gulf service.
“The UK and the US have undertaken a substantial amount of research into Gulf veterans’ illness. The research has indicated that there is no illness which is specific to Gulf veterans.”
But some ex-servicemen regard this position as cowardly.
“The MoD is afraid of being accountable,” says Shaun Rusling from the National Gulf Veterans and Families Association.
“If they admitted there was such a thing as Gulf War Syndrome they could be open to compensation claims for medical negligence.
“I would like the present government to apologise to the servicemen and give them proper care and ... Read more>>