My Lai Massacre


“The Mỹ Lai Massacre was the Vietnam War mass killing and gang rape of between 347 and 504 unarmed Vietnamese civilians in South Vietnam on March 16, 1968. It was committed by U.S. Army soldiers from Company C, 1st Battalion, 20th Infantry Regiment, 11th Brigade, 23rd (Americal) Infantry Division. Victims included men, women, children, and infants. Some of the women were gang-raped and their bodies mutilated. Twenty-six soldiers were charged with criminal offenses, but only Lieutenant William Calley Jr., a platoon leader in C Company, was convicted. … The incident prompted global outrage when it became public knowledge in November 1969. The My Lai massacre increased to some extent domestic opposition to the U.S. involvement in the Vietnam War when the scope of killing and cover-up attempts were exposed. Initially, three U.S. servicemen who had tried to halt the massacre and rescue the hiding civilians were shunned, and even denounced as traitors by several U.S. Congressmen, including Mendel Rivers, Chairman of the House Armed Services Committee. … Mỹ Lai holds a special place in American and Vietnamese collective memory. A 2.4-hectare (5.9-acre) Sơn Mỹ Memorial dedicated to victims of the Sơn Mỹ (My Lai) massacre was created in the village of Tịnh Khê, Sơn Tịnh District, Quảng Ngãi Province of Vietnam. The graves with headstones, signs on the places of killing and a museum are all located on memorial site. The War Remnants Museum in Ho Chi Minh City has an exhibition on My Lai. Some American veterans chose to go on pilgrimage to the site of the My Lai massacre to heal and reconcile. On the 30th anniversary of the My Lai massacre (March 16, 1998), a groundbreaking ceremony for the My Lai Peace Park was held 2 km (1 mi) away from the site of the massacre. Many Vietnam era veterans, including Hugh Thompson, Jr. and Larry Colburn from the helicopter rescue crew, were at the ceremony. …”
Wikipedia
New Yorker: The Scene of the Crime By Seymour M. Hersh (March 30, 2015)
New Yorker: Coverup—I By Seymour M. Hersh (January 22, 1972)
Democracy Now – My Lai Revisited: 47 Years Later, Seymour Hersh Travels to Vietnam Site of U.S. Massacre He Exposed (Video)
History
amazon: American Experience – My Lai, My Lai 4 – Seymour M. Hersh

Pham Thanh Cong, the director of the My Lai Museum, was eleven at the time of the massacre. His mother and four siblings died. “We forgive, but we do not forget,” he said. (New Yorker)

About 1960s: Days of Rage

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