My lai massacre
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My Lai massacre. By. Makayla Watkins, Stanly Haynes, and Kyle Ankney. Background. My Lai lay in the south Vietnamese district of Son My. This was a heavily mined area where the Vietcong were deeply entrenched .

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My lai massacre

My Lai massacre

By. Makayla Watkins, Stanly Haynes, and Kyle Ankney


  • My Lai lay in the south Vietnamese district of Son My.

  • This was a heavily mined area where the Vietcong were deeply entrenched .

  • Numerous members of the Charlie Company had been maimed or killed in the area in the preceding weeks.

  • The agitated troops ,under the command of Lt. William Calley, entered the village poised for engagement on March 16, 1968.

The massacre
The Massacre

  • As the mission unfolded it soon turned into the massacre of over 300 apparently unarmed civilians ( includes women, children, and the elderly).

  • Calley ordered the men to enter the village firing, though there had been no report of opposing fire.

  • Eyewitnesses say that old men were bayoneted , praying women and children were shot in the back of the head

  • Calley said to round up a group of villagers ,ordered them into a ditch, and mowed them down with machine gun fire

Investigations and questions
Investigations and questions

  • Word of the massacre did not reach the American public until November, 1969

  • The gruesome details of My Lai reached the American public, serious questions arose concerning the conduct.

  • Investigating the massacre found widespread failures of leadership, discipline, and morale among the army’s fighting units.

Language of the war
Language of the war

  • AIRBURST- explosion of ammunition in the air

  • AIR CAV- air cavalry, referring o helicopter-borne infantry.

  • ARCOMS- Army commendation medals

  • ARTY- artillery

  • BAC SI- Vietnamese term for medical corpsman; doctor

  • BIRD- any aircraft, usually helicopters

Language of the war cont
Language of the war cont.

  • BLUELEG- infantryman, a.k.a. “grunt”

  • CAV- nickname for air cavalry

  • C&C – command and control

  • CHERRY- a new troop replacement

  • CHURCH KEY- bottle opener

  • CRACKER BOX- field ambulance


  • They used various forms of artillery, both stationed and carried into the field.

  • Infantrymen carried lighter guns on patrol, using them to provide close up, mobile support.

  • The larger guns, positioned at firebase throughout the south.

Photos of the massacre
Photos of the massacre