Quotations about the My Lai massacre (1968)

A selection of quotations about the massacre at My Lai hamlet in 1968:

“It was terrible. They were slaughtering villagers like so many sheep.”

Larry La Croix, American sergeant

“That day it was just a massacre. Just plain right out, wiping out people.”

Leonard Gonzales, American soldier

“I would say that most people in our company didn’t consider the Vietnamese human… A guy would just grab one of the girls there and in one or two incidents they shot the girls when they got done.”

Dennis M Bunning, American private

“The most disturbing thing I saw was one boy and this is what haunts me … A boy with his arms shot off, shot up and hanging on and he just had this bewildered look on his face like what did I do, what’s wrong… he couldn’t comprehend.”

Fred Wilmer, ‘Charlie’ Company

“I feel that they were able to carry out the assigned task, the orders that meant killing small kids, killing women because they were trained that way, they was trained that when you get into combat it’s either you or the enemy…”

Kenneth Hodges, ‘Charlie’ Company sergeant

“The only crime that I have committed is in judgement of my values. Apparently, I valued my troops’ lives more than I did that of the enemy.”

William Calley, ‘Charlie’ Company lieutenant

“It is why I’m old before my time. I remember it all the time. I’m all alone and life is hard. Thinking about it has made me old … I won’t forgive as long as I live — think of the babies being killed, then ask me why I hate them.”

My Lai survivor, interviewed by British television