Lieutenant William Calley found guilty of My Lai massacre

(202 words)
  • Lucas Paul Richert (University of Saskatchewan)

Historical Context Note

On 29 March 1971, U.S. Army Lieutenant William Calley was found guilty by a military court for his role as leader of a platoon that carried out a devastating mass killing of some 500 person in a village called My Lai. The story, once revealed, contributed to American dissatisfaction and disillusionment back home. My Lai, located in the Quang Ngai province, was thought to be a Viet Cong stronghold. On 16 March 1968, a troop of U.S. soldiers raided My Lai after receiving intelligence that substantial Viet Cong personnel were in the area. However, no armed VC soldiers were discovered. Nevertheless, the U.S. platoon, led by Calley, killed nearly 500 women and children as well as elderly persons. Afterward, the incident was covered-up in a c…

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Richert, Lucas Paul. "Lieutenant William Calley found guilty of My Lai massacre". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 01 October 2008
[, accessed 01 December 2015.]