Kill Anything That Moves: The Real American War in Vietnam

01/17/13 Robert Lorei
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Our guest in this first half hour is Nick Turse. He's a fellow at The Nation Institute whose investigations of U.S. war crimes in Vietnam have gained him a Ridenhour Prize for Reportorial Distinction and a fellowship at Harvard’s Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study. He spoke with more than 100 American veterans across the US “both those who had witnessed atrocities and others who had personally committed terrible acts.”

The massacre of more than 500 civilians at My Lai on March 15, 1968, by the Americal division’s Charlie company, 1st battalion, 20th infantry, has long been portrayed as a solitary episode ordered by Lieutenant William Calley. He was the only one of 28 officers involved who was convicted and although sentenced to life imprisonment was paroled after just 40 months.

Yet episodes of such barbarism “were virtually a daily fact of life throughout the years of the American presence in Vietnam,” writes Nick Turse in his new book, “Kill Anything That Moves: The Real American War in Vietnam”(Metropolitan Books). Turse is a fellow at The Nation Institute whose investigations of U.S. war crimes in Vietnam have gained him a Ridenhour Prize for Reportorial Distinction and a fellowship at Harvard’s Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study. He writes that he spoke with more than 100 American veterans across the country “both those who had witnessed atrocities and others who had personally committed terrible acts.”

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