We recently posted a blog regarding the military base at Karshi-Khanabad, Uzbeistan, known as “K-2” and the disabilities suffered by service members and veterans who were deployed there. In summary, there is widespread belief among both service members and the medical community that the exposures at K-2 cause a myriad of different disabilities ranging from respiratory conditions to various cancer diagnosis. The base was purchased from the former Soviet Union who reportedly stored radioactive material in and around the base grounds. Even though service members are regularly deployed to K-2, the radioactive material can still be detected. These soldiers are also exposed to various solvents and fuels that form a “black goo” under their feet.
In an effort to provide more efficient services for those veterans affected by the exposures at K-2, President Donald Trump was considering issuing an Executive Order that would add K-2 to the VA’s Burn Pit Exposure Registry, which would allow for easier compensation examination for veterans who were stationed at K-2. It would also allow a K2 veteran to get access to depleted uranium screenings as they seek medical care form the VA for their conditions. This legislation would provide the veterans stationed at K-2 with the same benefits as those veterans that were exposed to toxic substances in Afghanistan.
In addition, in December of 2020, congress passed the National Defense Authorization Act that contains provisions for the government to conduct a study of the illnesses among K2 veterans and similar provisions for other veterans groups, including military pilots, who are now facing illnesses they say are connect to toxic exposure.