The 'moral' U.S. at war


The 'moral' U.S. at war

From the Weekly People, January 30, 1971

While Sergeant Hutto was being tried at Fort McPherson, Lieutenant William L. Calley was being tried at Fort Benning. Former Private Paul D. Meadlo testified on Jan. 12, under compulsion, that Captain Ernest L. Medina "told us there was a Vietcong organization in the village [of Mylai, a massacre site], that everyone there was a Vietcong or a Vietcong sympathizer, that we were to search and destroy it, and that includes women, children and livestock."

Mr. Meadlo said of his confessed killing of civilian men, women, children and babies, "I was emotionally upset but I still thought I was carrying out orders." "This feeling was reinforced, he said," the Jan. 12 New York Times reported, "when he saw that Captain Medina observed the results and 'didn't try to put a stop to it whatsoever.'" Meadlo was later assigned a group of 30 to 40 civilians and was told that he knew what to do with them. He assumed, or pretended to assume, that he was to guard them as prisoners. Lieutenant Calley came back and asked, "How come they're not dead?" Meadlo replied, "I didn't know we were supposed to kill them." "I want them dead," Galley ordered. They were then killed by Galley and Meadlo.

Meanwhile, in Washington and elsewhere, the usual posture of capitalist morality and self-righteousness was maintained.