This content was created by Michitake Aso. The last update was by Kate McDonald.
Bodies and Structures 2.0: Deep-Mapping Modern East Asian HistoryMain MenuGet to Know the SiteGuided TourShow Me HowA click-by-click guide to using this siteModulesRead the seventeen spatial stories that make up Bodies and Structures 2.0Tag MapExplore conceptsComplete Grid VisualizationDiscover connectionsGeotagged MapFind materials by geographic locationLensesCreate your own visualizationsWhat We LearnedLearn how multivocal spatial history changed how we approach our researchAboutFind information about contributors and advisory board members, citing this site, image permissions and licensing, and site documentationTroubleshootingA guide to known issuesAcknowledgmentsThank youDavid Ambaras1337d6b66b25164b57abc529e56445d238145277Kate McDonald306bb1134bc892ab2ada669bed7aecb100ef7d5fThis project was made possible in part by a major grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities.
Report Form A
1media/Bao Cao CTVT Mau A_thumb.png2020-01-14T12:37:21-05:00Michitake Asoc957806dd05559bbe07c540e9ab4cd46aae194d3356Bao Cao CTVT Mau Aplain2021-08-26T18:39:27-04:00Viet Bac1953National Archives of Vietnam, Center 3, Prime Minister's Office (PTT), file 2290. NAV3 PTT ML2 2290.Michitake AsoMA-0030Kate McDonald306bb1134bc892ab2ada669bed7aecb100ef7d5f
12019-11-18T15:48:28-05:00Rural Surveys38Gathering information about suspected biological warfare.structured_gallery2021-10-05T14:24:27-04:0021.034793, 105.811436Northern Vietnam1952Michitake AsoCommittee to Prevent GermsViệt Minh
During the early 1950s, the French seemed to be spreading many things, including insects, but there were no witnesses that could tie them to airplanes and they existed in Vietnam already, so it was hard to say if they were introduced. The only solid evidence was for Cladosporium, a genus of fungi that, the report argued, hadn’t existed in Vietnam before. It was unclear what were the effects, as Cladosporium didn't seem to harm humans, though it was noted that it could damage tomato plants.
The report of the third meeting of the Committee to Prevent Germs noted that at first farmers in the Red River Delta were worried but that there had been no effects since 1952, so they were no longer as concerned and were no longer paying attention. The committee posed the question:
Should the committee publicly denounce the plot of the enemy?
The committee recommended that the Việt Minh wait to make a denunciation until the agricultural and medical institutes could make further investigations.
The committee also developed several standardized forms that were supposed to provide a more rigorous report that could tie strange materials to enemy airplanes. These included the following short “Form A.” Longer forms were also developed that asked more specific questions about the airplanes, time and place of release, agricultural conditions, and potential effects. These more detailed forms also broke down observations according to vector, including insects and powders. Finally, these forms asked if the respondent was sure or not sure about what they had observed (NAV3 PTT ML2 2290).
Such forms aimed to establish the basic facts of biological weapons use. They also sought to determine credibility of the observer. Việt Minh leaders were convinced that the French were using biological weapons but having watched the international reaction to charges of biological warfare during the Korean War, they had some idea of the difficulty of convincing the international community that France, and its patron the United States, would employ such weapons. Scroll over the form to see a translation to English.