Cũng tại nơi đau thương này, đêm 25/2/1969 Tên sát nhân Bob Kerrey đã chỉ huy một đơn vị SEAL tấn công vào làng Thạnh Phong, dùng dao, lưỡi lê chém giết 21 người dân vô tội họ gồm toàn ông bà già,phụ nữ và trẻ em, sau đó chúng được Chính quyền Mỹ tặng thương Huân Chương chiến công về "Vụ Tiến công tiêu diệt VC ở làng Thạnh Phong"
Mãi đến năm 2001 vụ thảm sát dã man này mới bị phanh phui và tên Bob Kerrey bị dư luận tiến bộ Mỹ buộc là "Tội phạm chiến tranh" nhưng chính quyền Mỹ đã bao che cho y trắng tội.
Sự việc xảy ra hơn 40 năm rồi mà nay nhắc lại chúng ta vẫn thấy còn đau...Đế Quốc Mỹ là loài thú ăn thịt người chúng ta đời đời không bao giờ quên mối thù này.
Thanh Phong Massacre In 2001, the New York Times Magazine and 60 Minutes II carried reports on an incident that occurred during Kerrey's Vietnam War service. On February 25, 1969, he led a Swift Boat raid on the isolated peasant village of Thanh Phong, Vietnam, targeting a Viet Cong leader that intelligence suggested would be present. The village was considered part of a free-fire zone by the U.S. military.
Kerrey's SEAL team first encountered a peasant house, or hooch, and killed the people inside with knives. While Kerrey says he did not go inside the hooch and did not participate in the killings, another member of the team, Gerhard Klann, said that the people killed there were an elderly man and woman and three children under 12, and that Kerrey helped kill the man. Despite the differing recollections about who actually stabbed these people, Kerrey accepts responsibility as the team leader for their deaths: "Standard operating procedure was to dispose of the people we made contact with," he told the New York Times Magazine. Later, according to Kerrey, the team was shot at from the village and returned fire, only to find after the battle that all the dead were women and children, clustered together in the center of the village. "The thing that I will remember until the day I die is walking in and finding, I don't know, 14 or so, I don't even know what the number was, women and children who were dead," Kerrey said in 1998. "I was expecting to find Vietcong soldiers with weapons, dead. Instead I found women and children." Klann, and a Vietnamese woman, Pham Tri Lanh, who says she witnessed the assault, gave a different account, saying that the SEALs rounded up the inhabitants of the village and shot them.
Regardless of what actually occurred that night, Kerrey expressed anguish and guilt over the incident:
You can never, can never get away from it. It darkens your day. I thought dying for your country was the worst thing that could happen to you, and I don't think it is. I think killing for your country can be a lot worse. Kerrey was awarded a Bronze Star for the raid on Thanh Phong. The citation for the medal reads, "The net result of his patrol was 21 Viet Cong killed, two hooches destroyed and two enemy weapons captured."
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Photo taken in Thạnh Hải, Thanh Phu District, Ben Tre, Vietnam
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