In a new interview published a few days ago, famous investigative journalist Seymour Hersh spends some time recalling the My Lai massacre of civilians in Vietnam he first reported on 50 years ago. The BBC published a video of Hersh discussing the horrific incident in the village of My Lai, Vietnam recently. Here is the video description from the BBC:
The US journalist who broke the My Lai massacre story 50 years ago says the horror of what happened still makes him “teary”. On March 16, 1968 US soldiers massacred more than 500 men, women and children in the Vietnamese village of My Lai.
The investigative journalist Seymour Hersh, acting on a tip-off, tracked down Lt William Calley to Fort Benning, Georgia. Lt Calley had been a platoon commander at My Lai and would later be the only soldier found guilty of the massacre. Hersh also tracked down other soldiers who were at My Lai to uncover the full horror of that day. He tells BBC Hardtalk’s Stephen Sackur there were incidents so horrific he did not include them in his original reports.
See the video interview here (some disturbing images):
Another great article about the anniversary was published at the LA Times. An excerpt:
Everybody’s heard of the My Lai massacre — March 16, 1968, 50 years ago today — but not many know about the man who stopped it: Hugh Thompson, an Army helicopter pilot. When he arrived, American soldiers had already killed 504 Vietnamese civilians (that’s the Vietnamese count; the U.S. Army said 347). They were going to kill more, but they didn’t — because of what Thompson did. I met Thompson in 2000 and interviewed him for my radio program on KPFK in Los Angeles.
He told the story of what happened that day, when he and his two-man crew flew over My Lai, in support of troops who were looking for Viet Cong fighters. “We started noticing these large numbers of bodies everywhere,” he told me, “people on the road dead, wounded. And just sitting there saying, ‘God, how’d this happen? What’s going on?’ And we started thinking what might have happened, but you didn’t want to accept that thought — because if you accepted it, that means your own fellow Americans, people you were there to protect, were doing something very evil.”
A quote from the LA Times article:
“We know that Americans committed a massacre 50 years ago today; and we also know that an American stopped it. Hugh Thompson died in 2006, when he was only 62. I wish we could have done more to thank him.“