Publication Details

Gray, T. & Martin, B. (2008). The American war in Indochina: injustice and outrage. Revista de Paz y Conflictos, 2008 (1), 1-23.


In the war in Indochina, with its unprecedented scale of firepower, many U.S. military actions had the potential to generate outrage in Indochina, the United States, and elsewhere. Examination of three interrelated aspects of U.S. military operations in the Indochina war the bombing, the Phoenix Program, and the My Lai massacre reveals numerous examples of how the U.S. government tried to inhibit outrage from its actions. The methods used can be classified into five categories: covering up the action; devaluing the target; reinterpreting the action; using official channels to give the appearance of justice; and intimidating and bribing people involved. This analysis shows how minimization of public outrage is a key task for war-makers and also points to a variety of ways to challenge the perpetrators of injustice.