GLOBAL CONNECTIONS: the Near/Middle East
1991: Smoke from burning oil wells in Iraq causes severe health and environmental problems throughout the Middle East.

The entire Middle East region, even those countries not directly involved in the fighting, suffers a toll from the Gulf War. Weather patterns are disrupted, black rain (from oil residues and acids) destroys crops, and the number of respiratory ailments soars.

PBS Oil-Well Fire: Smoke
http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline /shows/syndrome/analysis/oilwell .html

It is unlikely that exposure to oil-well fire smoke is responsible for symptoms reported today by Gulf War veterans.