George M James
THE RECLASSIFICATION OF WORLD WAR TWO POWs - reposted from 26/12/2019
Updated: Nov 8, 2020
The latest US rendition program started in 1995 or perhaps 1996 under the Administration of Billy Goat Clinton. After the 9/11 attack it really took off, expanding dramatically. The difference is that almost no one was ever tried in a court of law. We have men today, at the time of publishing, being held without trial at Guantanamo Bay for 17 years. It cannot be justified and ought never to have happened. If a man is a danger as a terrorist, then kill him. Don’t hold him for years. Whatever information he might have had then is now totally out of date and useless to you. The mere existence of the jail creates terrorism. So what this comes down to, also called “extraordinary rendition” is to deny suspects / terrorists the privileges of the US legal system, bad as it is. Let us say that X is identified inside Pakistan as a terrorist. He would then be kidnapped or arrested by the locals and handed over to the CIA (and FBI) for interrogation. Since the interrogation is done in ways that come down to torture and thus illegal under ordinary US laws, this must be done in other countries where they can get away with it. It is all about “playing the game” and deniability (which is useless today, it is not denied).
This playing games with the law, abusing it to make something obviously unlawful lawful is to be found also (see Code Name Alphabet 32) wherever the ridiculous United Nations (UN) Forces can be found on “Peacekeeping Duties.” The amount of sexual abuse of children, women and even goats is beyond belief. To look better, the UN changed the indisputable rapes and child molestation charges / accusations to something lesser by changing the designation of wrongdoing to reflecting “exploitations.” It is a pathetic solution that will change nothing and will never protect the abused. Sadly, there is a 1945 historical prelude to the United Nations’ whitewash of their war crimes. They learned it from the US and British Army... History will show you that in May 1945 Nazi Germany surrendered. This left the Allies with about 7.8 million German prisoners of war to take care of. The Geneva Conventions on War demanded that the prisoners eat the same rations as would your own troops, i.e. what Allied troops would eat. That is the laws of war, end of argument, you cannot escape it. However, General Eisenhower, the Allied Supreme Commander, Europe, later the US President, could not feed them at the same level as his own troops. It was logistically difficult because he failed to plan properly for it. Therefore, he designated the surrendering German troops not as prisoners of war (P.O.W.s) but “Disarmed Enemy Forces” (DEF). This meant two things. First, the International Red Cross could not access the prisoners. Wherever this happens, abuse is absolutely assured. And secondly, the prisoners had no Geneva Convention protection regarding food or anything else. They were now completely at the mercy of their former enemies. Consequently, they were kept in enormous wired-in enclosures lacking any shelter and other necessities to sustain life. The abbreviation used, DEF, sounds like DEATH when spoken and probably got some chuckles because of it. There are lots of film footage available today of the prisoners fighting over food, looking haggard and gaunt. Many Allied soldiers and commentators found the fighting for food very amusing. It was not amusing. There was nothing amusing about it. This was and is the finger of shame pointing right at them.
No one knows how many men died because of the conditions implied on them but in the French Sector 16,500 died in 1945 alone. The Allies only got away with their behaviour because they were the victors and the Allied prisoners freed. There could be no retaliation from the German side. A 1989 book, Other Losses, written by James Bacque, claimed that the German P.O.W. deaths were deliberate. He stated that the deaths so caused was about 790,000 German soldiers. Note that these were ordinary soldiers, not the Gestapo, SS types. Men that fought in uniform without any suggestion of war crimes. Bacque got to his figure by looking at the records available. The deaths recorded as such, “other,” came to 790,0000 according to him. His claims were instantly and viciously attacked by US, UK, and West German historians. Particularly Professor (Dr) Stephen E. Ambrose, a renowned US historian left in charge of the Eisenhower legacy, was incensed. Ambrose would later become famous for his book “Band of Brothers” turned into a 2001 American war drama. It tells the story of Easy Company, 506th Regiment of the 101st Airborne Division from 1942 to the end of World War Two. Despite the miniseries being historically erroneous and showing looting as well as other war crime type of acts by the American heroes portrayed it did remarkably well, earning the highest praises. Still, even Dr Ambrose had to concede to Bacque’s book, “We as Americans can't duck the fact that terrible things happened. And they happened at the end of a war we fought for decency and freedom, and they are not excusable.” The quotation does not imply that Ambrose agreed with James Bacque’s findings. He contested them bitterly whilst agreeing that “terrible things happened.” A curious remark that should be noted down. Where there is smoke a fire is usually to be found too. Colonel Ernest F. Fisher, a former senior historian of the US Army Center of Military History, agreed completely with Bacque’s findings.
Only by February 1946 or 10 months after the surrender took place and the captivity began did the International Red Cross gain access to the German DEF camps. They did much to provide relief although they were initially only allowed the smallest quantities of food to be delivered. In their reports, the Red Cross uses one phrase often enough to stand out to the reader, “appalling conditions.” The British Army had the same system going, exactly the same, called “Surrendered Enemy Personnel” (SEP). Same story, same evading of international treaty obligations. The Brits would do the same during the 1950s Malayan Emergency, use the definition of SEP and “Captured Enemy Personnel” (CEP) with the same consequences to the captured. By such means, devious in the extreme, the responsibility laid upon the victors by the 1929 Geneva Convention signed by all parties was negated. Perhaps not 790,000 died but certainly thousands did and the reclassification is not denied nor the reason why it was done - to remove the surrendered men from the protections provided by the Geneva Conventions. It makes for extremely shameful reading no matter what excuses are offered of which there are too many. It is scary how history repeats and mark my words the same will be done in the future. You, the average man / Joe might be the next target. Remember history.
I heard of the above in vague rumours. Now, it is confirmed. Sadly so. GMJ