SAT Subject US History Practice Question 909: Answer and Explanation
80. U.S. forces in Vietnam used Agent Orange primarily to
A. counteract the effects of poisons used by the Vietcong.
B. camouflage movement in the jungle.
C. interrogate Vietcong prisoners.
D. destroy the natural cover used by the Vietcong guerrillas.
E. prevent the diseases carried by the insects of Vietnam.
Correct Answer: D
Agent Orange was the toxic chemical substance used to defoliate (remove leaves from) trees in the jungle so the Americans could see their enemy. It is now linked to cancers and other diseases among American (and presumably Vietnamese) veterans of the Vietnam War. Agent Orange was not a medicine to cure poisoning (A), nor was it used to camouflage troop movement (B). Sodium pentothal was one drug used for interrogation (C). Insects (E) must have died in the spray, but that was not the purpose for using Agent Orange.