My Lai: A Brief History with Documents / Edition 1

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Overview

The massacre at My Lai on March 16, 1968 continues to haunt students of the Vietnam War as a moment that challenges notions of American virtue. James Olson and Randy Roberts have combed unpublished testimony and gather a collection of eyewitness accounts from those who were at My Lai and reports from those who investigated the incident and its cover-up.

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Editorial Reviews

Booknews
Introduces students and general readers to the most controversial event of the Vietnam War, the My Lai massacre, in which some 400 civilians were killed by American soldiers in 1968. An overview examines the massacre and the attempted cover-up and discusses the ramifications that the ensuing investigation had for the public, policymakers, and the antiwar movement. Eight topical chapters reprint 68 primary documents, drawn mainly from testimony and reports of General Peers' inquiry, to chronicle events leading up to, during, and after the massacre. Includes b&w photos, a glossary, a chronology, and discussion questions. Distributed by St. Martin's Press. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780312142278
  • Publisher: Bedford/St. Martin's
  • Publication date: 1/28/1998
  • Series: Bedford Cultural Editions Series
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 222
  • Sales rank: 403,033
  • Product dimensions: 5.49 (w) x 8.20 (h) x 0.35 (d)

Meet the Author

James S. Olson is a Distinguished Professor ofHistory at Sam houston State University. He is a historian of recent U.S. history as well as popular culture. He also has a special interest in Vietnam and has edited the Dictionary of the Vietnam War (19988) and written The Vietnam War: Handbook of the Literature and Research (1993) and, with Randy Roberts, Where the Domino Fell: America and Vietnam, Second Edition (1996). Olson is the author of many other books and articles, including The Ethnic Dimenion in American History, Second Edition (1995); Saving Capitalism (1988); amd, with Randy Roberts, John Wayne: American (1995).

Randy Roberts is professor of history at Purdue University. His primary research areas are sports and popular culture within the larger context of recent American histroy. He is an award-winning biographer and is highly visible in the field of post-1945 American history. Among his more important books are Heavy Justice: The State of Indiana v. Michael G. Tyson (1994); Jack Dempsey: The Manassa Mauler (1979); and Papa Jack: Jack Johnson and the Era of White Hopes (1983). Roberts has served frequently as a consultant for PBS News, HBO, and the History Channel.

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Table of Contents

Table of Contents

Foreword
Preface

Introduction: The Road to My Lai
America's Longest War
The Ground War in Quang Ngai
Charlie Company
The My Lai Massacre
Aftermath

1. The Official Story
1. Jay A. Roberts, Press Release, March 1968
2. Frank A. Barker Jr., Combat Action Report, March 28, 1968
3. William Westmoreland, Testimony before Congressional Committee, 1970

2. The Official Rules of Modern Warfare
4. William Westmoreland, Testimony before Congressional Committee, 1970
5. Wallet Cards

Training in the Rules of Land Warfare
6. Herbert L. Carter, Testimony to Peers Commission, 1970
7. Peers Commission, Training of 11th Brigade, 1970

3. Experience in War: December 1967 to March 14, 1968
8. Peers Commission, Military Situation in Quang Ngai Province, 1970
9. Michael Bernhardt, Testimony to Peers Commission, 1970
10. William L. Calley, Combat Experience before My Lai, 1970
11. Jay A. Roberts, Testimony to Peers Commission, 1970

4. The Briefings: March 15, 1968
12. Peers Commission, Pre-Operation Briefings, 1970
13. Eugene Kotouc, Testimony to Peers Commission, 1970
14. Ernest L. Medina, Testimony to U.S. Army CID, 1969
15. Max D. Hutson, Testimony to U.S. Army CID, 1969
16. Gregory T. Olsen, Testimony to U.S. Army CID, 1969
17. Harry Stanley, Testimony to U.S. Army CID, 1969
18. Ronald L. Haeberle, Testimony to U.S. Army CID, 1969
19. Herbert L. Carter, Testimony to the U. S. Army CID, 1969
20. Robert W. T'Souvas, Testimony to U.S. Army CID, 1969
21. Thomas R. Partsch, Journal Entry, March 15, 1968
22. Robert E. Maples, Testimony to U.S. Army CID, 1969
23. Nguyen Dinh Phu, Testimony to Peers Commission, 1970
24. Michael Terry, Testimony to U.S. Army CID, 1969
25. Dennis Conti, Testimony to Peers Commission, 1970

5. The Assault on My Lai
26. Dennis Conti, Testimony to Peers Commission, 1970
27. Herbert L. Carter, Testimony to U.S. Army CID, 1969
28. Michael Terry, Testimony to Peers Commission, 1970
29. Robert E. Maples, Testimony to U.S. Army CID, 1969
30. Larry Polston, Testimony to U.S. Army CID, 1969
31. Varnado Simpson, Testimony to U.S. Army CID, 1969
32. Hugh Thompson Jr., Testimony to Peers Commission, 1970
33. Ernest L. Medina, Testimony to U.S. Army CID, 1969
34. Nguyen Hieu, Testimony to Peers Commission, 1970
35. Nguyen Bat, Testimony to Peers Commission, 1970
36. Summary of Rapes, 1970
37. Do Vien, Testimony to U.S. Army CID, 1970
38. William L. Calley, Testimony at Court-Martial, 1970

6. The Cover-Up
39. Hugh Thompson Jr., Testimony to Peers Commission, 1970
40. Carl Crestwell, Testimony to Peers Commission, 1970
41. Ernest L. Medina, Testimony to Peers Commission, 1970

Testimony from Charlie Company
42. Michael Bernhardt, Testimony to Peers Commission, 1970
43. Dennis Conti, Testimony to Peers Commission, 1970
44. Herbert L. Carter, Testimony to Peers Commission, 1970
45. Oran K. Henderson, Report of Investigation, April 24, 1968
46. Oran K. Henderson, Statement to Peers Commission, April 24, 1968
47. Vietcong Leaflet, 1968
48. National Liberation Front Committee Notice, March 28, 1968
49. Summary of Son My Chief's Letter, April 11, 1968
50. Tran Ngoc Tan, Report to Quang Ngai Province Chief, March 28, 1968
51. Thomas R. Partsch, Journal Entries, March 16-18, 1968
52. Brian Livingston, Letters Home, March 16 and 19, 1968
53. Samuel Koster, Testimony to Peers Commission, 1970

7. Exposure and Investigation
54. Ronald Ridenhour, Letter to Military and Political Leaders, March 29, 1969
55. William Wilson, "I Had Prayed to God That This Thing Was Fiction," 1990

Newspaper Accounts
56. Robert M. Smith, Officer Kept in Army in Inquiry Into Killing of Vietnam Civilians, November 13, 1969
57. E. W. Kenworthy, Resor Called to Testify About Alleged Massacre, November 26, 1969
58. Fred Graham, Army Lawyers Seek Way To Bring Ex-G.I.'s to Trial, November 26, 1969
59. Photographs from Life Magazine, 1969
Public Reaction
60. Notes and Comment, December 20, 1969
61. The Great Atrocity Hunt, December 16, 1969

8. Culpability
62. J. Anthony Lukas, Meadlo's Home Town Regards Him as Blameless, November 26, 1969
63. William L. Calley, Testimony at Court-Martial, 1970
64. Paul Meadlo, Testimony to Peers Commission, 1970
65. Lewis B. Puller Jr., From Fortunate Son: The Autobiography of Lewis B. Puller Jr., 1991
66. Peter Steinfels, "Calley and the Public Conscience," April 12, 1971
67. Richard M. Nixon, From RN: The Memoirs of Richard Nixon, 1978
68. William C. Westmoreland, From A Soldier Reports, 1976

APPENDICES

Glossary
A My Lai Chronology (1967-1974)
Questions for Consideration
Suggested Readings
Maps

Index

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