By Mortz C. Ortigoza
While speed reading a hardbound book The New American Military by Andrew J. Bacevich I bought at Book Sale in Robinsons Place - Pangasinan, I came across a paragraph about a barbarous criminal act, that shocked the whole world, perpetrated by Army Lieutenant William Calley, Jr. and cohorts who during the Vietnam War in March 16, 1968 massacred up to 504 innocent Vietnamese civilians who were men, women, and children.
This condemnable heinous crimes, I first read on the Time and Life Magazines of my military father when I was in elementary grades, became one of the most scandalous episodes that until now haunts the American military.
But just like the defense of the hierarchy’s of the Philippine National Police that its officers and men have been absolved by the aberration brought by Police Staff Sergeant Jonel Nuezca, the Yanks said that the Calley brouhaha was an "isolated case" - son of a gun to borrow the incessant two-word justification of the Flips ,er, Filipinos' national police every time a scalawag in their rank went berserk by maiming or murdering a civilian.
|SCARED Vietnamese Women and children who after this photo was taken was|
mowed to death by the automatic rifles of the American soldiers. They were part
Here below are the more shocking salient features of the Mỹ Lai Massacre as recounted by those who directly saw how those evil Yankee soldiers killed those innocent civilians -- as if they were slaughtering a horde of defenseless animals.
According to the May 27, 1970 news report of the Milwaukee Journal titled: My Lai: Soldiers’ Bullets Silenced Pleas, Prayers of Victims: “The villagers, who were getting ready for a market day, at first did not panic or run away, as they were herded into the hamlet's common spaces and homestead yards. Harry Stanley, a machine gunner from Charlie Company, said during the U.S Army Criminal Investigation Division inquiry that the killings started without warning. He first observed a member of 1st Platoon strike a Vietnamese man with a bayonet. Then the same trooper pushed another villager into a well and threw a grenade in the well. Next, he saw fifteen or twenty people, mainly women and children, kneeling around a temple with burning incense. They were praying and crying. They were all killed by shots to the head
When Private First Class Michael Bernhardt entered the subhamlet of Xom Lang, the massacre was underway.
Here what Seymour M. Hersh wrote on Eyewitness accounts of the My Lai massacre on the book’s Plain Dealer (November 20, 1969):
"I walked up and saw these guys doing strange things ... Setting fire to the hootsches and huts and waiting for people to come out and then shooting them ... going into the hootches and shooting them up ... gathering people in groups and shooting them ... As I walked in you could see piles of people all through the village ... all over. They were gathered up into large groups. I saw them shoot an M79 grenade launcher into a group of people who were still alive. But it was mostly done with a machine gun. They were shooting women and children just like anybody else. We met no resistance and I only saw three captured weapons. We had no casualties. It was just like any other Vietnamese village – old papa-sans, women and kids. As a matter of fact, I don't remember seeing one military-age male in the entire place, dead or alive".
One group of 20–50 villagers was herded south of Xom Lang and killed on a dirt road. According to Ronald Haeberle's eyewitness account of the massacre, in one instance.
So there you are my dear readers, if Vietnam had that traumatic My Lai Massacre,Mindanao, Philippines had the Ampatuan Massacre where the gunmen killed 43 men and 15 women. Some victims were shot in the genital area and others were mutilated before murdering them through the order of Datu Unsay Town Mayor Andal Ampatuan, Jr, son of then incumbent Maguindanao Governor and War Lord Andal Ampatuan, Sr. Many of the women there were raped and 34 journalists were killed. It should be 35 salamabit if I did not settle in Pangasinan from my reporter’s job in Central Mindanao.
These heinous crimes committed by these dregs of society were no different to the grisly murder of rogue killer cop Jonel Nuezca of Paniqui, Tarlac that became a shocker to the consciousness of the people in and out of the Philippines.
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