Sunday, June 15, 2008

A perspective on Guantanomo from WWII

From 'bliffle' on

The burdens of idealism are heavy indeed. But that is what we have embraced in our Constitution, Declaration Of Independence, Bill Of Rights and other re-affirmations.

In fact, we have asserted that international treaties that we sign are as binding as our own laws, not merely suggestions that we may or may not observe.

Thus, if we look back to, say, 1944 when we had some 200,000 German POWs incarcerated (in New Mexico and Arizona, primarily) we felt ourselves bound by Geneva Conventions and rules of war to treat those soldiers to the same living condition as our own soldiers and officers.

Gasp! This was a big sacrifice because USA citizens were undergoing severe rationing to make sure that our Army and Navy lads had the best food and the best support circumstances we could possibly afford. Now we were required to provide those same conditions to The Hated Enemy!

We citizens were undergoing meatless days, milkless meals, etc., while German POWs were eating high on the hog! It was so good for the POWs that only one ever tried to escape (he was easily apprehended wandering around in Alberquerque). There were plenty of well-organized protests by angry USA citizens, too.

We even had to provide movies and other entertainment facilities so that they might not even notice they were prisoners. As well as military-quality medical facilities (much better than civilian facilities in those days).

But we saw our duty and we did it.

Are we less men than the Americans of 64 years ago?

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