United States' Army Chief of Staff, General William Westmoreland left Washington to give a speech to the Texas National Guard Association Yesterday (3 April) in Houston.
GV Government buildings in Washington (SILENT LEAD IN)
CU GEN. Westmoreland
Transcript Seq. 2: Gen. Westmoreland:-
"I was in command of American forces in Vietnam at the time of this unhappy incident. My orders with respect to handling the civilian population were: Care and controlling our fire to avoid civilian casualties and reporting civilian casualties. Reporting of any atrocities that might occur was very clear and very specific. I feel that as far as the command was concerned, that the attitude was clearly known throughout the command, the attitude that we would do all possible to avoid civilian casualties. Because the real nature of the war was to assist the South Vietnamese and winning the allegiance of the people, winning the hearts and minds of the people. You do not do that if you are reckless in controlling your firepower. You do not give appropriate care to the caring for the civilian population."
Initials VS/21.06 VS/21.11
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Background: United States' Army Chief of Staff, General William Westmoreland left Washington to give a speech to the Texas National Guard Association Yesterday (3 April) in Houston. He expressed surprise at the extent of public reaction to the conviction and sentencing of Lieutenant William Calley for premeditated murder at My Lai in South Vietnam.
General Westmoreland was the former Commander of American forces in Vietnam.