Enormous stockpile of poison gas in a Belgian forest

Discussion in 'Weapons, Technology & Equipment' started by liverpool annie, Jan 6, 2009.

  1. liverpool annie

    liverpool annie New Member

    This to me is amazing ...... is this really the case ? :eek:

    The Abomination of Houthulst

    In a forest in Belgium, not 45 kilometers from the border of Holland, stands an enormous stockpile of poison gas out in the open, rusting, and barely guarded. The stockpile grows every day. An accident here would have unimaginable consequences.

    It is spring in the Houthulst woods. Birds sing in the trees, rabbits hop over the path. It's a lovely picture that doesn't go with images of spitting, suffocating, and dying soldiers.

    The high trees don't stand far from the place where in the afternoon of April 22, 1915 soldiers were attacked with poison gas for the first time in history.

    It was Germans who had thought up these weapons. When the greenish-yellow cloud blew away, five thousand allied soldiers lay blue and dead in their trenches and there were ten thousand disabled for life.

    The trees of Houthulst conceal even more. Hidden among the budding greenery is an open space with ten concrete platforms, each surrounded by a low earthen wall.

    There they lie, piled up on wooden pallets, and sometimes just lying on the ground: tens, hundreds, thousands of shells, still filled with deadly chlorine, mustard, and phosphate gas.

    Eighteen thousand duds from the First World War. Three hundred thousand kilos. Sufficient for the eradication of millions of people. And every day, more is added.

    Most of the gas shells are heavily rusted. Some have partly burst open. Dozens of shells are leaking. Those have been temporarily encased in a container.

  2. Adrian Roberts

    Adrian Roberts Active Member

    People are killed every year by picking up WW1 munitions from the ground and fiddling with them.

    There are numerous museums and cafes along the front with enormous piles of deactivated shells.

    But poison gas shells left to rot? I'm a little sceptical on this. Might be worth asking on the ***....

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