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In 1969, Vietnam veteran Ron Ridenhour wrote a letter to Congress and the Pentagon describing the horrific events at My Lai – the infamous massacre of the Vietnam War – bringing the scandal to the attention of the American public and the world.
Ridenhour later became a respected investigative journalist, winning the George Polk Award for Investigative Journalism in 1987 for a year-long investigation of a New Orleans tax scandal. He died suddenly in 1998 at the age of 52. At the time of his death, he was working on a piece for the London Review of Books, had co-produced a story on militias for NBC's Dateline and had just delivered a series of lectures commemorating the thirtieth anniversary of My Lai.
Selected Articles by Ron Ridenhour
"Perspective on My Lai: 'It was a Nazi kind of thing,'" Los Angeles Times, March 16, 1993 (PDF)
"Jesus Was a Gook," anthologized in Nobody Gets Off the Bus: The Viet Nam Generation Big Book, Volume 5 Number 1-4, March 1994 (PDF)
"What We Learned in Vietnam," In These Times, March 3, 1997 (PDF)
"Tax Dodge: Millions Go Uncollected; City Hall Protects the Favored Few," New Orleans CityBusiness, February 16, 1987, for which Ridenhour won the prestigious George Polk Award (PDF)
Read the letter that Ron Ridenhour wrote to Congress and the Pentagon