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Film reveals the consequences of Agent Orange

Feb. 19, 2008

KALAMAZOO--Narrated by Kevin Kline, "The Last Ghost of War" is a documentary about the consequences of the use of the chemical defoliant Agent Orange during the Vietnam War. A single screening will take place at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 20, in the Little Theatre at Western Michigan University.

"The Last Ghost of War" is open to the public free of charge and will be followed by a panel discussion.

Members of the panel include Janet Gardener, the film's director and co-producer; Susan Hammond, director of the War Legacies Project, a nonprofit organization that encourages humanitarian assistance to address the aftermath of the war in Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam; and WMU faculty members Dr. Ed Martini, assistant professor of history, and Dr. Elke Schoffers, associate professor of chemistry.

At Tu Du Hospital in Saigon, babies in a special unit have enlarged heads or missing limbs. Pham Thi Thuy Linh, born without arms, writes with her feet. A boy with a shrunken leg careens around the corridor in a wheelchair.

Thirty-two years after the end of the Vietnam War, they are among several million victims of Agent Orange. "The Last Ghost of War," introduces the victims, who are plaintiffs in a class-action lawsuit against 32 U.S. chemical companies.

"The Last Ghost of War" was shot on location in Vietnam, France and the United States. The 2006 film is not rated, and has a run time of 54 minutes.

The Kalamazoo screening of "The Last Ghost of War" is sponsored by the Burnham-Macmillan Endowment of the WMU Department of History.

Media contact: Thom Myers, (269) 387-8400, thom.myers@wmich.edu

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