The Impact of the My Lai Massacre

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The impact of the My Lai Massacre Starting on Sunday 16th March 1968, the My Lai massacre did not last long but the impacts of it are still present today. The massacre was a brutal representation of the US army and the Vietnam War in which they were involved. All in all between 347 and 504 men, women, and children died because of the events in My Lai. My Lai impacted a vast amount of people whether it was socially, politically, or militarily. I believe that the main impact of the My Lai massacre was that on the US. This is because it affected not only their army, but also the US public. The events in My Lai significantly impacted the US troops that were situated in Vietnam. Some Soldiers were accused of crimes concerning the My Lai Massacre. The most significant of these was Lt.Calley who was found guilty in court of 109 counts of murder and sentenced to life imprisonment, he only served three years. Soldiers started to disobey their Generals and their behaviour deteriorated, the number of soldiers that used drugs was on the rise as well. Soldiers started, with the combination of drugs and no respect, to ‘frag’. “Between 1969 and 1971, according to official data, the total number of ‘fragging incidents’ was 730 and 83 officers were killed this way”. This, along with other factors led to the troop’s morale being dangerously low. Another turning point in the war, the Tet offensive, had lowered the troops’ Morales because it had planted the seed to the US public that the US may not be victorious in their quest to end communism but the events in My Lai only worsened the situation. Now the troops were mistrusted by the US public and were starting to doubt if they could win the war themselves. Although the US public mistrusted the army they mistrusted the Government more. Although the My Lai massacre happened in 1968 it was only released to the public more than a

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