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Archive for March, 2016

PLEASE REMEMBER The My Lai Massacre 16-March-1968

Posted by Greg Lance - Watkins (Greg_L-W) on 16/03/2016

PLEASE REMEMBER The My Lai Massacre 16-March-1968


On the 16-March-1968 a detatchment of US troops under the direct command of Lt. William Calley entered the village of My Lai and slaughtered and raped old women, children, and entire families.

Some 500 civilians were slaughtered.

The USA took no meaningful action against the 18 men charged and the 19th. Lt. Calleyreceived little more than a tokenary punishment.

Do note that not one of the senior officers in the line of command EVER stood trial for this obscene action of cowardice and brutality.

John Kerry as a young man responded to the Senate Enquiry and claimed it was The USA at fault and no one man should be held responsible for a faulty system:

Many years later that same John Kerry as a Senator voted for the corrupt and unlawfull invasion and brutal massacres of Iraq under the same irresponsible gung ho code.
It is this same John Kerry who succeeded to the job of Sec. State Hillary Rodham Clinton & now represents the USA on the global stage!

Is this what is meant by power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely?

Please take a moment and think of those wretched civilians slaughtered in My Lai 44 years ago today.

Then take a moment to consider the slaughter in the same cause of forcing people to practice some obscene concept to suit old men in Government – forcing them in Iraq and Afghanistan, Palestine, Libya, Mali & so many more to adopt a given model of democracy or be shot or tortured if they resist.

. .

Courtesy of Wikipedia entry:


  • Lieutenant Colonel Frank A. Barker – commander of Task Force Barker who ordered the destruction of the village and controlled the artillery preparation and combat assault from his helicopter; he was killed in Vietnam on June 13, 1968, before the investigation had begun.[4][55]
  • Lieutenant Stephen Brooks – platoon leader of 2nd Platoon, Charlie Company.
  • Second Lieutenant William L. Calley – platoon leader of 1st Platoon, Charlie Company.
  • Colonel Oran K. Henderson – brigade commander who ordered the attack; he had been in a helicopter over Mỹ Lai.[4]
  • Major General Samuel W. Koster – commander of the Americal Division.
  • Captain Eugene Kotouc – military intelligence officer who provided some of the information on which the Mỹ Lai combat assault was based; together with Medina and a South Vietnamese police officer, he tortured and executed suspects later that day.[15]
  • Captain Ernest Medina – company commander of Charlie Company who planned, ordered, and supervised the execution of the operation in Sơn Mỹ village.[56]

1st Platoon, Charlie Company

  • Sergeant Michael Bernhardt – refused to participate in the killing of civilians. Captain Medina threatened Sergeant Bernhardt to deter him from writing to Bernhardt’s congressman to expose the massacre and, as a result, was allegedly given more dangerous duties such as point duty on patrol.[57] Later he would help expose and detail the massacre in numerous interviews with the press, and he served as a prosecution witness in the trial of Medina, where he was subjected to intense cross examination by defense counsel F. Lee Bailey. Recipient of the New York Society for Ethical Culture‘s 1970 Ethical Humanist Award.[58]
  • Herbert Carter – platoon “tunnel rat“. He claimed he shot himself in the foot in order to be MEDEVACed out of the village.[citation needed]
  • Dennis Conti – testified he initially refused to shoot, but later fired some M79 grenade launcher rounds at a group of fleeing people with unknown effect.
  • James Dursi – killed a mother and child, then refused to kill anyone else even when ordered to do so.
  • Ronald Grzesik – a team leader. He claimed he followed orders to round up civilians, but refused to kill them.
  • Robert Maples – stated to have refused to participate.[clarification needed]
  • Paul Meadlo – said he was afraid of being shot if he did not participate. Lost his foot to a land mine the next day. Later, he publicly admitted his part in the massacre.
  • Sergeant David Mitchell – accused by witnesses of shooting people at the ditch site; pleaded not guilty. Mitchell was acquitted. His attorney was Ossie Brown of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, who thereafter became the district attorney of East Baton Rouge Parish, Louisiana.[59]
  • Varnado Simpson – committed suicide in 1997, citing guilt over several murders committed in Mỹ Lai.
  • Charles Sledge – radio operator, later prosecution witness.
  • Harry Stanley – claimed to have refused to participate.
  • Esequiel Torres – previously had tortured and hanged an old man because Torres found his bandaged leg suspicious. He and Roschevitz (described below) were involved in the shooting of a group of ten women and five children in a hut. Later he was ordered by Calley to shoot a number of people with a M60 machine gun; he fired a burst before refusing to fire again, after which Calley took his weapon and opened fire himself.[citation needed]
  • Frederick Widmer – Widmer, who has been the subject of pointed blame, is quoted as saying, “The most disturbing thing I saw was one boy—and this was something that, you know, this is what haunts me from the whole, the whole ordeal down there. And there was a boy with his arm shot off, shot up half, half hanging on and he just had this bewildered look in his face and like, ‘What did I do, what’s wrong?’ He was just, you know, it’s, it’s hard to describe, couldn’t comprehend. I, I shot the boy, killed him and it’s—I’d like to think of it more or less as a mercy killing because somebody else would have killed him in the end, but it wasn’t right.”[60]

Other soldiers

Hugh Thompson, Jr. rescued Vietnamese civilians during the My Lai massacre.

  • William Doherty and Michael Terry – soldiers in the 3rd Platoon who killed the wounded in the ditch.[36]
  • Ronald L. Haeberle – photographer attached to the 11th Brigade information office who accompanied C Company.
  • Nicholas Capezza – chief medic in Charlie Company. He insisted he saw nothing unusual.
  • Sergeant Minh – ARVN interpreter who confronted Captain Medina about the number of civilians that were killed. Medina replied, “Sergeant Minh, don’t ask anything – those were the orders.”[61]
  • Gary Roschevitz – grabbed an M16 rifle from Varnado Simpson to kill five Vietnamese prisoners.[62]According to various witnesses, he later forced seven women to undress with the intention of raping them. When the women refused, he reportedly shot them.[63]

Rescue helicopter crew

  • Warrant Officer One Hugh Thompson, Jr. – helicopter pilot who confronted the ground forces personally. Died 6 January 2006.
  • Specialist Four Glenn Andreotta – crew chief. Killed In Action: 8 April 1968.
  • Specialist Four Lawrence Colburn – door gunner.
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IN MEMORIAM Col. Harry Beckhough born 08-Feb-1914 Died 15-Mar-2015 Aged 101

Posted by Greg Lance - Watkins (Greg_L-W) on 15/03/2016

IN MEMORIAM Col. Harry Beckhough born 08-Feb-1914 Died 15-Mar-2015 Aged 101


Posted by:
Greg Lance – Watkins



I was very honoured to have been able to count Harry Beckhough as a friend for a number of his later years, and even more honoured when he proclaimed me as a trusted frien before an audience in Marlborough Town Hall.

Harry very kindly, some years ago, agreed to attend a political meeting for two days for me at The Huntsman near Chepstow – too impart a prodigious flow of his experience and political knowledge and reminiscences. Harry’s contribution was invaluable.

After his visit to Chepstow we kept in touch for some years and I well remember that when he realised I was genuinly interested in social and political history he wrote me some 30 or 40 pages of his reminiscenses and experiences from his early years until he left Bristol, just prior to WWII.

Final farewell in Marlborough to wartime code breaker Harry Beckhough, 101

Anna Mauremootoo, Senior reporter for Marlborough and Pewsey / Saturday 11 April 2015 / 

Mourners gathered at St Mary’s Church in Marlborough this afternoon to say goodbye to centenarian and wartime code breaker Harry Beckhough.

Around 100 people gathered at the church for the service in tribute to the 101-year-old led by the Rev Dr David Maurice.

Mr Beckhough’s son-in-law James Munby read from Ecclesiates followed by a reading of Psalm 29 by his daughter, Jennifer Munby.

She then read a poem Not How Did He Die, But How Did He Live followed by a tribute from Mr Beckhough’s grandson, Thomas Munby.

He said: “When you’re asked to speak about someone like my grandfather where do you start?

“I tried to start by thinking what Harry would say, trouble is, I know exactly what Harry would say. He’d wander in, look around, smile at us all, he’d pull his innocent face and say ‘oh, has somebody died’?

“In my mind Harry Beckhough was an astonishing man. I loved him, I miss him and I’m very proud to call him my grandfather.”

Marlborough Mayor Marian-Hannaford Dobson spoke of Mr Beckhough’s 19 years in the town, moving in 1996 to be near his family. Mr Beckhough is thought to be the longest serving member of the Conservative party, joining it at the age of 15, and he continued his interest in the party all his life.

She said: “Harry used his desk in the Constituency office five days a week for the rest of his life.

“He regularly lectured at the Marlborough College summer school and also volunteered at Savernake Hospital once a week. Another of his pleasures was to work on the Marlborough Jubilee committee and centre.

“I count myself fortunate, and privileged, to have had Harry Beckhough as my friend.”

Mr Beckhough chose hymns Abide With Me; I Vow to Thee My Country; and He who would Valiant Be to be sung at the service.

Claire Perry, who up until the dissolution of parliament was the Conservative MP for the Devizes constituency that includes Marlborough, also paid tribute to Mr Beckhough. She said: “He was an amazing representative of all that my party stand for.

“He was so capable of seeing the big picture but also of seeing the small details.

“He was always there for a chat, he was always there for a counsel. I spoke to him just a few weeks ago and he said ‘I’m not doing so well but best of luck in the election, I’m proud of country and I’m proud of our government’.”

Mr Beckhough, who lived in Castle Court retirement apartments in River Park, died on March 15.

He grew up in Bristol attending Fairfield Grammar school and studying at Bristol University.

He was a Colonel in the Intelligence Corps and a code breaker at Bletchley Park during the Second World War.
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He celebrated his 101st birthday twice, first on February 8, the day he was born, and on February 15, which is on his birth certificate because his father didn’t register him until a week after his birth.

After the service mourners went to a celebration of Mr Beckhough’s life at the ConservativeClub.


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