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The Vietnam War

The Vietnam War

William Calley, Jr. in The Vietnam War

William Calley, Jr. (b. 1943) is the former lieutenant of the United States Army during the Vietnam War. In 1971, Calley was found guilty of murder for ordering the killings of hundreds of South Vietnamese civilians in the My Lai (pronounced "MEE LEYE") Massacre.

In March 1968, Lieutenant William Calley led his platoon into the hamlet of My Lai in South Vietnam. Suspecting the presence of Viet Cong fighters, Calley ordered his men to eliminate all inhabitants. Hundreds of civilians—mostly women, children, and elderly men—were killed, some of the women raped, and others mutilated. Three years later, a military court sentenced Calley to life in prison for the 22 of these murders. He appealed the conviction and was able to receive a reduced sentence. He was released from prison in 1974.

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