One of the darkest moments of the Viet Nam conflict, the My Lai massacre was a watershed moment in the conduct of the war. The events at My Lai subsequently spawned a famous quote attributed to a US Air Force Major whom allegedly said that “it became necessary to destroy the village in order to save it”. Still today “My Lai logic” or “Ben Tre logic” denotes the absurdity of gratuitous violence in order to bring about an ostensibly desirable peaceful outcome.
Obama collects Nobel Peace Prize, defends use of war
“The president laid out the circumstances where war is justified – in self-defense, to come to the aid of an invaded nation and on humanitarian grounds, such as when civilians are slaughtered by their own government or a civil war threatens to engulf an entire region.
“The belief that peace is desirable is rarely enough to achieve it,” he said.”