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Old 06-16-2012, 07:43 PM
 
Location: American Expat
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Quote:
Originally Posted by X14Freak View Post
The American government seems to believe that Japanese war crimes aren't very important at all. MacArthur certainly didn't think so and he appointed many former war criminals into high positions and granted clemency to members of Unit 731. America also doesn't seem to think the Armenian Genocide should be recognized. The thing is America will never press their allies on these situations and it is unlikely to change at all because frankly it doesn't in any way serve American interests.

I hate to bring the Holocaust up in this thread but one repercussion from all the reparations given to the Jews is that it served as an example for other groups to also start demanding reparations for atrocities committed against them. For example, many Armenians want land back that they believe is theirs and this is one of the biggest reasons why the Turks do not recognize the Armenian Genocide. If Japan admitted to all their atrocities they would have to pay even more reparations to all the victims. The reparations are the main reason why many countries (not just Japan) formally refuse to recognize their crimes.

How would they be liable ? You would have to prove that this particular person was killed by the government. That's impossible to do now. A blanket apology or recognition isn't gonna open them up to reparations. Besides, a Japanese court would have to decide about this. It just would not happen, imo.
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Old 06-18-2012, 02:23 AM
 
1,392 posts, read 1,930,622 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Glucorious View Post
How would they be liable ? You would have to prove that this particular person was killed by the government. That's impossible to do now. A blanket apology or recognition isn't gonna open them up to reparations. Besides, a Japanese court would have to decide about this. It just would not happen, imo.
If that's the case, why didn't America admit that the No Gun Ri Massacre was a war crime? In fact here is what America has to say about the massacre: "an unfortunate tragedy inherent to war and not a deliberate killing." If this is the excuse America has given for its war crime, why exactly should the Japanese recognize their war crimes?

America also usually justifies the Atomic bombing by stating that it was necessary to force the Japanese to surrender and that it saved more lives in the end. If that's the rationale for killing civilians, why aren't the Japanese allowed to justify the Nanking Massacre by stating that they did it to force the Chinese to surrender?

Last edited by X14Freak; 06-18-2012 at 02:33 AM..
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Old 06-18-2012, 08:29 AM
 
14,031 posts, read 20,252,438 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by X14Freak View Post
If that's the case, why didn't America admit that the No Gun Ri Massacre was a war crime? In fact here is what America has to say about the massacre: "an unfortunate tragedy inherent to war and not a deliberate killing." If this is the excuse America has given for its war crime, why exactly should the Japanese recognize their war crimes?

America also usually justifies the Atomic bombing by stating that it was necessary to force the Japanese to surrender and that it saved more lives in the end. If that's the rationale for killing civilians, why aren't the Japanese allowed to justify the Nanking Massacre by stating that they did it to force the Chinese to surrender?
Neither the No Gun Ri massacre or the atomic boming have to do with this topic. No Gun Ri isn't even the same conflict or country (Japan or China)? Are we going to start discussing Pol Pot and Ghengis Kahn now?

But to explore you concept - the impact of an incident must be considered. We are not talking about 300 deaths (No Gun Ri), but 300,000 in Nanking...or 30 million if you consider all the civilian deaths by Japanese during the WW2 era.
As far as the justification - for Nanking, there was none, and no claim to such by the Japanese government. Japan simply refused to acknowledge a massacre, saying it was all military deaths. Thus it is in no way or shape related to the (historically accurate) justification for the atomic bombings.
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Old 06-18-2012, 08:23 PM
 
Location: Near Manito
20,136 posts, read 22,190,385 times
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I just heard a podcast with Antony Beevor on the BBC regarding his new book on the Second War World.

It's a bombshell. Among other things, he discloses a previously unreported strategy of the Russians to deny their own troops air and artillery support in the battles on the eastern front, thus emboldening the Germans to push on recklessly into their eventual encirclement before Stalingrad and at other crucial points.

Also very disturbing is Beevor's contention that the Japanese used systematic cannibalism of POWs and civilians as a way to offset the severe malnutrition of troops, who were cut off and effectively subject to starvation due to the succes of US submarine warfare.

Neither of these contentions has as yet been confirmed in other sources. Perhaps Forum members have some input.

Read about the podcast here...

| BBC History Magazine

Read reviews of his book here...

Amazon.com: The Second World War (9780316023740): Antony Beevor: Books
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Old 06-18-2012, 09:29 PM
 
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How do western allies get away with the bombing of Dresden and Eisenhowers death camps where millions of Germans soldiers died after the war had ended?
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Old 06-19-2012, 09:22 AM
 
14,031 posts, read 20,252,438 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Angorlee View Post
How do western allies get away with the bombing of Dresden and Eisenhowers death camps where millions of Germans soldiers died after the war had ended?
Please link to your info about "Eisenhowers death camps" so that we can make fun of what you think is real and laugh at you.

Strategic bombing campaigns - one again (for at least the second time) is not comparable to acts committed to surrendored people, essentially acts done in peace (japan and german) vs. wartime (allies).
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Old 06-19-2012, 11:46 AM
 
14,781 posts, read 38,575,685 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by X14Freak View Post
If that's the case, why didn't America admit that the No Gun Ri Massacre was a war crime? In fact here is what America has to say about the massacre: "an unfortunate tragedy inherent to war and not a deliberate killing." If this is the excuse America has given for its war crime, why exactly should the Japanese recognize their war crimes?
The debate over No Gun Ri basically comes down to whether or not there were official orders given to the kill refugees or if it was an isolated incident. The former would rise it to the level of war crimes. While the evidence certainly seems in favor of it having been endorsed at least at the divisional level, there is much confusion over whether or not it was in anyway an official policy. While the massacre is horrible no matter how it happened, it was essentially an isolated incident during the war. I don't personally believe the US or South Korean government is doing/has done enough to uncover what really happened. Of course, one of the stark differences between this and the Japanese question at hand is that the US at least acknowledges at all levels that it happened, what is debatable is why.

Quote:
America also usually justifies the Atomic bombing by stating that it was necessary to force the Japanese to surrender and that it saved more lives in the end. If that's the rationale for killing civilians, why aren't the Japanese allowed to justify the Nanking Massacre by stating that they did it to force the Chinese to surrender?
I've debated this before in many threads. What I will say once again is that the Allies certainly committed their fair share of acts that would have been viewed as war crimes had they lost. "Terror bombing" was a tactic endorsed at the highest levels of the Allied governments and certainly violated international law and was the direct targeting of civilians. So, I am not a blind believer in the moral superiority of the Allies. However, there is a marked difference between the case of the atomic bombings and the Nanking Massacre that you are laying out. The Nanking Massacre was conducted against a civilian population that had already surrendered and the city was occupied. This would have been akin to Japan surrendering and then the US deciding to drop the atomic bombs just to drive the point home. For as questionable as the acts of mass bombing were in moral terms, they were conducted against targets that were supporting the war effort of their nation. The Allies used this as justification in an era of industrialized warfare. Why I don't believe it passes a morality test, it is different from the deliberate slaughter of surrendered people for nothing more then the amusement of the troops as happened in Nanking.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Yeledaf View Post
I just heard a podcast with Antony Beevor on the BBC regarding his new book on the Second War World.

It's a bombshell. Among other things, he discloses a previously unreported strategy of the Russians to deny their own troops air and artillery support in the battles on the eastern front, thus emboldening the Germans to push on recklessly into their eventual encirclement before Stalingrad and at other crucial points.

Also very disturbing is Beevor's contention that the Japanese used systematic cannibalism of POWs and civilians as a way to offset the severe malnutrition of troops, who were cut off and effectively subject to starvation due to the succes of US submarine warfare.

Neither of these contentions has as yet been confirmed in other sources. Perhaps Forum members have some input.

Read about the podcast here...

| BBC History Magazine

Read reviews of his book here...

Amazon.com: The Second World War (9780316023740): Antony Beevor: Books
I have not read Beevor's book, but I think I might give it a whirl as it has gotten great reviews, thanks for sharing the links.

The assertion on the Russians depends on how you look at it. The Russians certainly employed a "baiting strategy" to draw the Germans in before they launched their counter-attacks. Often it was done, as is the case with Stalingrad, to deny the Germans their advantages in maneuver and airpower. By reducing the Germans to fighting man-to-man in the city they were able to equalize the playing field. In most cases, the Russians would simply stockpile their equipment to be ready for a major counter-offensive. So, yes, Russian troops (primarily infantry) would be used to resist and slow down the advance as much as possible until the Germans had exhausted their forward movement. Then, the Russians would counter-attack with their preserved strength. One could spin it that they purposefully left their troops exposed and denied them air, artillery and armor support, but this was done very purposefully for strategic and tactical gain, not something more sinister.

On the cannibalism, this has been known for a long time, but not often talked about. The Japanese government actually included a passing acknowledgement of these acts in their apology to Australian POW's. H.W. Bush in his memoirs mentions it as well. He later found out that the commander of Chichi-jima (the island where he was shot down) was renowned for consuming the livers of downed American airmen. He actually apparently jokes to 'Bar' that he almost became an hors d'ouerve if it were not for the crew of the Finback coming to rescue him. These accounts have been published in the book "Flyboys" and also in "Sorties Into Hell". It is confirmed that in at least the case of Chichi-jima what started out as a "stunt" by the officers in eating the livers did on several occasions devolve into human flesh being served to the troops in their mess.

Sorties Into Hell: The Hidden War on Chichi Jima – Book Review » Armchair General

Quote:
Originally Posted by Angorlee View Post
How do western allies get away with the bombing of Dresden and Eisenhowers death camps where millions of Germans soldiers died after the war had ended?
Western Allies "get away" with the bombings because they won the war. There is no way to twist what was done into something that wasn't morally questionable on the grounds that it did directly target civilians for the purposes of sowing terror under the cover that it was to damage industrial output. Even Churchill, the most vociferous proponent of "terror bombing" in the beginning was taken aback by what happened in Dresden. The only line that someone could reasonably draw would be that at the very least the Allies were targeting populations they were at war with, not engaging in wholesale slaughter of subjugated and surrendered people. I think trying to "excuse" Japanese or German actions on the basis of Allied bombing is foolish as they are not the same thing. In the same way though, it is hard to justify what the Allies did in moral terms and not consider it a type of war crime. If you want far more nuanced and technical aspects of this discussion there is a lengthy thread on here about the Nuremberg Trials that touches on many of these cases:

Curious Why German General Dostler Was Executed By Firing Squad and Not at Nuremberg?

On the last part, the idea of "Eisenhower death camps" is simply propestorous. This thread came up not too long ago dealing with the topic:

Retired US Officer Apologizes to Germans

Since I imagine the bulk of your "proof and evidence" is going to come from the things in that book, here are my rebuttals:

Quote:
Bacque's book was torn apart by just about every mainstream historian that specializes in WW2. Bacque is a novelist with no historical research background and virtually all of his claims and charges were dismissed.

What no one denies is that in the first month or two after the war there was a lot of chaos and the German POW's were subjected to very poor treatment in all of the camps run by the Western Allies. However, there was nothing approaching a systemic plan to eliminate German prisoners. What is true is that Eisenhower grossly underestimated the numbers of prisoners, civilians, freed concentration camp survivors and civilian refugees that he was going to have to feed. All of Europe was essentially placed on rations for the first couple years after the war until the food situation stabilized.

The German government itself places the total losses in Western Allied camps on the order of ~60k, or 1% of the total prisoners taken. Those same documents also detail the suffering at some of those camps and in particular the horrendous treatment by the French against the German prisoners. There is certainly room for an apology and discussion, but nothing rises to the level of what Bacque is claiming.

Here are some of his factual mistakes and the counters to them:

1. The book claims that there were a "Missing Million" based on the difference in two reports both issued on June 2, 1945. The problem is Bacque either ignored or failed to realize that these reports listed different numbers. The first report gave the total number of prisoners held by the US in the entirety of the ETO as 2,870,400. The second listed only US prisoners held in COMZ, a single area of the ETO, as being 1,836,000. This is where the "missing million" comes from, but Bacque ignored the fact that BOTH reports contain the total number of prisoners held in the ETO by all Allied nations as 3,193,747. There was never any "missing million" and the fact Bacque missed this information in the reports and what the reports themselves were talking about opens him up for a lot of speculation on the rest of his assertions.

2. The "Other Losses" refers to a column in the weekly reports of the US Provost Marshal for the various sectors of the ETO. What Bacque failed to realize is that the reports denote EXACTLY what those losses were. Deaths among the prisoners were counted as deaths in the columns with the exact reasons given when known. The "Other Losses" column referred to movement of prisoners between zones and camps. In fact the numbers all corrobarate between the various camps and zones. One report will say 100k in "Other Losses" and the footnote will say 80k moved to Camp X and 20k moved to Camp Y. Well lo and behold, the numbers at Camp X and Camp Y increased by those amounts in their census. The numbers vary in those columns from zero to 189,000, the assertion that they were hidden deaths is ridiculous.

Bacque also ignored the largest contributor to "Other Losses" as being the well documented release of Volksstrum especially young boys and old men too feable to fight. These men were often simply recorded and then sent home without any official discharge or process as they were no threat to the allied forces. This is simply one of the many examples of humane treatment by the US towards German prisoners.

3. His assertions of large scale deaths in French custody are also highly speculative. While the total deaths are most likely higher than the official numbers, Bacque routinely ignores the facts of the French camps and the detailed records that were maintained by the French. In fact he sites a French "Other Losses" column again without reading the footnotes that detail that those included were released Volksstrum, women and the sick. He also ignores well documneted US efforts to provide food to the prisoners in the French camps who were on starvation rations, even in 1946.

4. His entire premise is hinged on the belief that the "missing million" originated as soldiers who fled the Soviets, but that the Soviets had inflated the counts, so the western allies decided to dispatch with the difference. The problem is the Soviets took incredibly accurate records and there are no missing soldiers. Post war census' taken of POW's by the Germans themselves confirm the actual totals and match up very well with the numbers reported by the Soviets and western allies. Bacque even misquoted Adenauer and claimed he thought the missing numbers were in the west. What Adenauer said during a meeting discussing a TASS report was whether or not the "missing" POW's from the Soviet records might be accounted for in the western numbers. The answer given at the meeting was certainly not. The whole point of the meeting was to ascertain German POW's still in Soviet custody or who died in Soviet custody. This is yet another example of Bacque picking and choosing his facts and ignoring contrary evidence in his own sources.

5. The camps in question were all contained along a very narrow stretch of 200km along the Rhine river. For the deaths to have occurred at the rate Bacque claims the Allies would have had to dispose of the bodies. Bacque claims this was done in buial details, not by burning. In order for that to be true there would be more than a corpse per every foot in the area where the camps were located. Yet, despite extensive post war development not a single mass grave has ever been uncovered in that area, let alone a body that wasn't known about. You can't just make a million bodies disappear, ask the Nazi's about that one.

6. Bacque twisted many of the oral histories that he used as evidence of what he was asserting. Many of the people he "quoted" have since come out and stated that they said nothing of the sort.

Overall, while there was certainly mistreatment and it is something worthy of discussion, exploration and perhaps even apology, the claims made by Bacque are utterly false. The official percentages of POW deaths are as follows:

Russians held by Germans: 57.5%
Germans held by Russians: 35.8%
Americans held by Japanese: 33.0%
Germans held by Eastern Europeans: 32.9%
British held by Japanese: 24.8%
British held by Germans: 3.5%
Germans held by French: 2.58%
Germans held by Americans: 0.15%
Germans held by British: 0.03%

As anyone can clearly see, the story of mistreatment of prisoners lies in the war between the Soviets and Germans against each other and the Japanese.
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Old 06-19-2012, 10:28 PM
 
Location: American Expat
2,189 posts, read 4,971,708 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Angorlee View Post
How do western allies get away with the bombing of Dresden and Eisenhowers death camps where millions of Germans soldiers died after the war had ended?
This has nothing to do with this thread.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dd714;24809498
Strategic bombing campaigns - [I
one again [/i](for at least the second time) is not comparable to acts committed to surrendored people, essentially acts done in peace (japan and german) vs. wartime (allies).
Now I gotta continue this off topic argument.

The Dresden Bombing can hardly be called "strategic" bombing. It was probably nothing more than "Let's show them what we got", which is wrong and puts you almost at the same level as the Nazis, because I think it was just supposed to kill as many people as possible.

But, again, this has absolutely nothing to do with the topic discussed here.
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Old 06-20-2012, 10:51 AM
 
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Originally Posted by NJGOAT View Post
On the last part, the idea of "Eisenhower death camps" is simply propestorous...
You have much more patience with those "hit and run" posters than I do. My guess is the poster has neither researched, nor has he interest, in the facts. It's simply something he picked up in another internet forum or site - ALLIED DEATH CAMPS and he ran with the concept! The fact that it is factually propostorous is meaningless to his type.
My approach is to laugh at them and treat them as an amusing although sometime irratating feature of an open internet forum (i.e. - the loonies come out) or ignore them, since they can not be convinced otherwise. Actually the brevity of his post indicates it is unlikely he will ever come back to this thread.
Not to mention, it is off topic (which is OK once it gets to page 7).
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Old 06-20-2012, 11:12 AM
 
14,781 posts, read 38,575,685 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dd714 View Post
You have much more patience with those "hit and run" posters than I do. My guess is the poster has neither researched, nor has he interest, in the facts. It's simply something he picked up in another internet forum or site - ALLIED DEATH CAMPS and he ran with the concept! The fact that it is factually propostorous is meaningless to his type.
My approach is to laugh at them and treat them as an amusing although sometime irratating feature of an open internet forum (i.e. - the loonies come out) or ignore them, since they can not be convinced otherwise. Actually the brevity of his post indicates it is unlikely he will ever come back to this thread.
Not to mention, it is off topic (which is OK once it gets to page 7).
Angorlee usually at least tries to come back and argue his points, which only digs him in deeper, lol. I've thought about letting it go, but it seems whenever the BS isn't addressed it attracts more of them and there is always the concern over, "if the comments are ignored, will someone take that as proof that they are true?"

The "Allied Death Camp" thing though had been mentioned on here before. That one has risen beyond the obscure neo-Nazi ranting website and has actually ended up with books published and actual debate about it even though those things have been roundly debunked as ever having happened.
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