2Thesis StatementThe My Lai Massacre was a point during the Vietnam war that demonstrated the United States frustration in fighting the elusive Vietcong, and poor leadership in developing successful strategy against the enemy.
3BackgroundMarch 16th 1968United States soldiers from the 11th brigade entered the Vietnamese city of My Lai located in South Vietnam.My Lai was known to be a heavy mined area in which U.S charlie had been being killed.Frustrated, the U.S soldiers under the command of Lt.William Calley entered the village. (My Lai Massacre)
4The “Mission”"This is what you've been waiting for -- search and destroy -- and you've got it,"(said Superior officers of the Soldiers)
5Search and DestroyThe objective of Search and destroy missions were to enter Villages where Vietcong were believed to be hiding.Ground troops would then search the area and destroy any Vietcong they found. (My Lai Massacre)
6Search and Destroy Cont. Finally they would leave immediately after Search and Destroying the enemy.This led to the invention/deployment of the helicopter. (My Lai Massacre)Search and Destroy Cont.
7The MassacreOnce the U.S soldiers entered the Village and they began Killing Unarmed Civilians.It was reported that 300 civilians were killed : Children, Women and the ElderlyU.S soldiers killed these innocent citizens in brutal ways. (Pricilla My Lai Massacre)
8Cont. Several elders were bayoneted Some women and children were shot in the back of the head while prayingOthers were raped, mutilated, and shot down my automatic weapons (Pricilla My Lai Massacre)
9The Story Reaches HomeIt wasn't until November 1969 when journalist Seymour Hersch published a story detailing an interview with Vietnam veteran Ron Ridenhour.However the media covered up exact details as long as possible. (My Lai Massacre)
11Calley TriedThe Investigation of the events that occurred at My Lai were conducted by government officials.Lieutenant William Calley was in charge of the actions performed.After firsthand witnesses went to the Pentagon , William Calley was put on trial for murder. (Truscott The Good Lt. Calley)
12Calley’s StoryCalley claimed to be carries out the orders of higher authority"I was ordered to go in there and destroy the enemy. That was my job that day. That was the mission I was given. I did not sit down and think in terms of men, women and children. They were all classified as the same, and that's the classification that we dealt with over there, just as the enemy. I felt then and I still do that I acted as I was directed, and I carried out the order that I was given and I do not feel wrong in doing so." (Truscott, Lucian K. Lt. William Calley at His My Lai Trial)
13Calley’s TrialQ: "Did you ever exit My Lai on a North-South trial to the South?"A: "No, sir."Q: "Did you have a Vietnamese interpreter with you at any time that day?"Q: "Did you have any prisoners with you when you left My Lai 4?"A: "I vaguely recall seeing a couple of them out in front of us as we moved out."Q: "Can you give the details of your order to your troops?"A: "Yes, sir. I did not give them a full five-paragraph field order, sir. Just our order of march and some logistics."Q: "Where did you get the information about using civilians to clear minefields?"A: "The morning before we lifted off, I got that information from Captain Medina, sir."Q: "Do you know whether or not at Task Force, Brigade, or Division level there was any control of the operation?"A: "I don't know, sir. I was down there on line and I only know I was controlled by my higher."(Truscott The Good Lt. Calley)
14Calley’s VerdictHe was convicted on March 29, 1971 of the premeditated murder of 22 Vietnamese citizensHe was sentenced to life in prisonHe was released four years later in 1974
15U.S. ThoughtsThis event scared the people back home because it showed the terrible things the U.S. soldiers were capable of
16Works Cited"My Lai Massacre." My Lai Massacre. N.p., n.d. Web. 13 June <http://www.whale.to/b/my_lai_massacre.html>.Roberts, Priscilla. "My Lai massacre." In Tucker, Spencer C., gen. ed. Encyclopedia of American Military History. New York: Facts On File, Inc., American History Online. Facts On File, Inc. http://www.fofweb.com/activelink2.asp? ItemID=WE52&iPin=EMHII0313&SingleRecord=True (accessed June 13, 2012).Truscott, Lucian K. "Lt. William Calley at His My Lai Trial: "I Carried Out the Orders I Was Given"" - New York News. Village Voice, n.d. Web. 13 June <http://blogs.villagevoice.com/runninscared/2010/11/lt_william_call.php>."William Calley Apologizes for My Lai Massacre." Columbus Ledger Enquirer. Ledger Enquire, n.d. Web. 13 June <http://www.ledger- enquirer.com/2009/08/21/813820/william-calley-apologizes-for.html>.