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My Lai / Son My

"...Afterwards the American got up, he put his clothes on, and then he shot her.
Never...Oh Americans, Americans."

(Pam Thi Trinh, explaining what happened to her sister Mui, 14, when the U.S war criminals came to My Lai, March 16 1968. Source)

My Lai (a part of the village Son My) in Central Vietnam will forewer be associated with that horrible day when the american war criminals attacked the village and went totally berserk, killing more than 500 villagers, mainly women, children and old men.

The U.S intelligence had told that the village was a V.C. stronghold. The order to the Charlie company was clear: "Kill all suspects!" The American soldiers basically killed everything that moved. The villagers were gathered in the rice paddies and in an irrigation ditch and shot to death by machine guns. Many villagers were raped, tortured and mutiliated.

During the entire operation not a single shot was fired at the American war criminals and no V.C. soldier was found in the village. (One american war criminal was hurt when he shot himself in the foot)

Of all the U.S war criminals only ONE was convicted for the war crimes in My Lai. Lt William Calley served three and a half years in house arrest(!). In USA the war criminals were acknowledged by the "The Battle Hymn of Lt. Calley". The single sold more than one million copies in the U.S in four days.

When I visited My Lai I was lucky to meet two of the very few women who managed to survive the U.S massacre. It was a really surreal feling meeting these two women, 40 years after the brutal U.S war crimes in My Lai. This is part of the testimony of Mrs. Ha Thi Qui (photo #11) who managed to survive from the ditch where the U.S soldiers gathered the villagers to shoot them to death. She survived because she was covered by the dead bodies of her neighbours:

"...they fired a first time into the ditch, and many men, children and women were killed. They cried, "Mother." They were screaming. The soldiers fired three more times and finished the cries of the people. The first time there were still people screaming. They fired a second time, and the third time it was finished, all the people were killed. Afterwards, I got up to go back to my house, and I saw nothing. All the houses had been burned. They had cut down our village tree by the pond. They had cut all the trees down in the orchards. They had killed everyone. There were dead bodies all over the village. I took a little dead baby back to the house from the roadside. It was my daughter's child. I went to the next hamlet and found my younger sister-in-law killed, lying on the floor. And I found her daughter's body, a fifteen-year-old girl, all her clothing torn off and her legs were spread open-raped by Americans. They had no mercy, the Americans." Source

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