Definitions for yellow rain

This page provides all possible meanings and translations of the word yellow rain

Random House Webster's College Dictionary

yel′low rain′(n.)

  1. powdery yellow deposits containing a fungal toxin, tricothecene, identified in SE Asia and claimed by some to be a chemical weapon and by others to be contaminated bee excrement.

    Category: Fungi

Origin of yellow rain:

1975–80

Freebase

  1. Yellow rain

    Yellow rain was the subject of a 1981 political incident in which the United States Secretary of State Alexander Haig accused the Soviet Union of supplying T-2 mycotoxin to the Communist states in Vietnam and Laos for use in counterinsurgency warfare. Refugees described many different forms of attacks, including a sticky yellow liquid falling from planes or helicopters, which was dubbed "yellow rain". The US government alleged that over ten thousand people had been killed in attacks using these chemical weapons. The Soviet Union denied these claims and an initial United Nations investigation was inconclusive. Some samples of the supposed chemical agent that were supplied to a group of independent scientists turned out to be honeybee feces, suggesting that the "yellow rain" was due to mass defecation of digested pollen grains from large swarms of bees. Other scientists questioned the accuracy of the refugee accounts and the reliability of the chemical analyses presented by the US government. The majority of the scientific literature on this topic now regards the hypothesis that yellow rain was a Soviet chemical weapon as disproved. However, the issue remains disputed and the US government has not retracted these allegations, arguing that the issue has not been fully resolved.

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