AMY GOODMAN: Finally, over forty-one years after the My Lai Massacre, when US troops killed more than 500 men, women and children in Vietnam, the former Army lieutenant who was convicted for his role in the killings has publicly apologized. William Calley was the only US soldier held legally responsible for the slayings. He was convicted on twenty-two counts of murder. His sentence was later commuted by President Reagan.
Last week, William Calley publicly apologized for the first time, while speaking at the Kiwanis Club of Greater Columbus in Georgia. He said, quote, “There is not a day that goes by that I do not feel remorse for what happened that day in My Lai." He added he had been following orders.
Although the My Lai Massacre took place March 16th, ’68, it wasn’t until November 12th, ’69 that the world found out about it. That’s when investigative journalist Seymour Hersh broke the story about the massacre and its cover-up. He was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for the exposé.
I want to turn now to the words of Seymour Hersh describing the My Lai Massacre and the role of the former Army lieutenant William Calley. I spoke to Hersh last year on the occasion of the fortieth anniversary of the massacre.
SEYMOUR HERSH: ...humping it in the boonies and in the villages and paddies of South Vietnam and never saw the enemy. Maybe they...