Legitmate Act of War or Warcrime? You decide. - Page 4




 
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December 22nd, 2008  
MontyB
 
 
But surely the same argument would have applied to German or Japanese soldiers that were held responsible for their actions after the war?

Basically if you are prepared to accept that argument from an allied soldier why wasn't it valid for axis personnel, for example if a German veteran of Malmedy gave you the same comment would you have the same opinion.
December 22nd, 2008  
Chukpike
 
A war crime is something committed by the loser of a war that the winner thought was necessary to add additional punishment for.

War is in itself is a crime. The idea that military personnel can be tried for actions committed during a war is questionable. The losers of WWII were tried for atrocities committed during the war, because the winners decided it was needed.

Trying present day military for actions committed in theater is new and a "enlightened western view". Any country sending personnel into conflict should not allow those persons to be prosecuted. It means the government that sent them is not taking responsibility for sending them.
At least most French citizens did not blame the allies for civilian casualties while wining back their freedom.

Pretty much the "enlightened view of the world" that says people are not responsible for their actions. It is someone else's fault.

In older times the winner just killed whoever they thought deserved it, after they had surrendered. Thus ensuring those particular people would not go to war again. This was highly unenlightened but effective system.

A soldier murdering or raping a civilian is not a war crime. It is a crime committed during war and in the US is punishable under the UCMJ. It is not a war crime punishable by a War Tribunal and should not be punishable by any other country than the one the soldier belongs too. Unless that country happens to be the loser, in which case the winner gets to decide.

Should Japan and Germany been accountable for their actions? Of course, the winners said so. Where they really held accountable? No just a few that were chosen to be prosecuted.
December 22nd, 2008  
MontyB
 
 
I think you are overlooking international convention though as that is not written by the victors it is a series of rules agreed to by several parties and designed to protect individuals in certain circumstances such as the treatment POWs or survivors of sinkings.

There is no difference between the actions of some allied submarine crews and those of the axis yet the allies attempted to charge Donitz over these actions, so while it may be convenient to hide behind a "The victor writes history" argument the simple reality is that a crime is a crime no mater who commits it.

During wars prior to WW2 it was easy to get away with such actions because there was little to know coverage of the incidents however since WW2 increased coverage of such actions have been covered and are perhaps one of the reasons Vietnam and now GW2 are proving to be extremely unpopular.

It is perhaps now more important than ever to be able to justify a war because loss of public support has extremely negative effects on the outcome.
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December 22nd, 2008  
Chukpike
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MontyB
I think you are overlooking international convention though as that is not written by the victors it is a series of rules agreed to by several parties and designed to protect individuals in certain circumstances such as the treatment POWs or survivors of sinkings.
Not overlooking International Convention. Those rules are what defines a war crime. It is enforced by the victors. The international convention has no more power to enforce those rules than the loser. If you are talking about the Geneva Covention those rules were written after WWI by... Ta Da! the victors!

Quote:
Originally Posted by MontyB
There is no difference between the actions of some allied submarine crews and those of the axis yet the allies attempted to charge Donitz over these actions, so while it may be convenient to hide behind a "The victor writes history" argument the simple reality is that a crime is a crime no mater who commits it.
Were the allies charged with a crime? If not, there was no crime. You say that, "allies attempted to charge Donitz over these actions". Was he convicted? If not, then no crime was committed.

In the case of war crimes, it is the victor that decides who is punished. How the history is written is decided after it occurs. A good example of history not being written by the victor can be seen in Japan. Japan still refuses to acknowledge it's war time history

Quote:
Originally Posted by MontyB
During wars prior to WW2 it was easy to get away with such actions because there was little to know coverage of the incidents however since WW2 increased coverage of such actions have been covered and are perhaps one of the reasons Vietnam and now GW2 are proving to be extremely unpopular.

It is perhaps now more important than ever to be able to justify a war because loss of public support has extremely negative effects on the outcome.
I don't know what GW2 is. Vietnam I served in.
I would hope that increased coverage of war would result in it losing its popularity. The truth is, war is brutal killing and ends when it is no longer popular by one side or the other or both.
Then the politicians step in and complain how deplorable it all was. It is terrible until they start another one.

Soldiers are trained to kill and in conflicts it is not turned on and off by a flip of a switch. The atrocity is war itself, and the leaders of the countries involved should be executed. They are the ones most responsible. If that was to happen once, I would expect to see a great reduction in war after that.

If war is becoming so unpopular, why is it going on at such a rapid rate?
December 23rd, 2008  
MontyB
 
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chukpike
Not overlooking International Convention. Those rules are what defines a war crime. It is enforced by the victors. The international convention has no more power to enforce those rules than the loser. If you are talking about the Geneva Covention those rules were written after WWI by... Ta Da! the victors!
There are numerous conventions and treaties on this issue for example the Treaty of London dealing with the actions of submarines prior to WW2, the Declaration of Paris (1856) which dealt with blockades etc.

Not sure if you are into books at all but you may find:
The Law of War By Ingrid Detter Delupis

Worth a read.

Quote:
I don't know what GW2 is. Vietnam I served in.
I mean Gulf War 2.

Quote:
If war is becoming so unpopular, why is it going on at such a rapid rate?
War will never go out of fashion as long as the world has patriots and politicians, what you will notice is that wars are only becoming unpopular in wealthy nations that have had their share of them, don't believe me just try convincing Europeans there is a need for war.
December 25th, 2008  
LeEnfield
 
 
A number of German Generals were tried for the war crime of waging war, this included Donitz the head of the German U Boat arm. As I have said earlier to victor goes the spoils and the loser takes what ever is dished out to them
December 25th, 2008  
papasha40
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by LeEnfield
A number of German Generals were tried for the war crime of waging war, this included Donitz the head of the German U Boat arm. As I have said earlier to victor goes the spoils and the loser takes what ever is dished out to them
LeEnfield, I believe the allies truly went too far at Nuremberg. If waging war is truly a crime, then they might as well have placed themselves in jail also. Donitz did not deserve the sentence he recieved. At the most he should have recieved a year or so for being stupid. Nothing more. As far as his wartime record goes, he was an honourable and clever adversary.

But, at the time the Russians were asking for the German nation to be neutered. And only executions would appease them. That Speer was given a jail sentence instead of being hanged, troubled the Soviets greatly. But I suppose a nation which lost between 22 and 25 million of it's citizens has a right to grind a big axe.
December 25th, 2008  
MontyB
 
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by LeEnfield
A number of German Generals were tried for the war crime of waging war, this included Donitz the head of the German U Boat arm. As I have said earlier to victor goes the spoils and the loser takes what ever is dished out to them
Then perhaps people should stop trying to sell Nuremberg as justice and simply refer to it as revenge.
December 26th, 2008  
LeEnfield
 
 
Monty.....Was it revenge as you say or was it justified. Now many of the attacks by the Germans at the start of the war were started with out any real reason or declaration of their intent. When Germany invaded Poland there was a period given to Germany to with draw or war would follow with Britain and France. Now Admiral Donitz may have got a raw deal with the time he had serve, but when you think of all the lives that were lost he still walked away with his life at the end of his sentence. Also when you think of all those slave labourers that died build U Boat pens and other installations for the German Navy, then you could say he got away with it quite lightly
December 26th, 2008  
MontyB
 
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by LeEnfield
Monty.....Was it revenge as you say or was it justified. Now many of the attacks by the Germans at the start of the war were started with out any real reason or declaration of their intent. When Germany invaded Poland there was a period given to Germany to with draw or war would follow with Britain and France. Now Admiral Donitz may have got a raw deal with the time he had serve, but when you think of all the lives that were lost he still walked away with his life at the end of his sentence. Also when you think of all those slave labourers that died build U Boat pens and other installations for the German Navy, then you could say he got away with it quite lightly
But if you are going to argue that the victor is always justified then the German treatment of conquered territories was justified using the same logic.

This is the problem you get when you start making up the rules after the event you end up nullifying the moral aspect of the allied cause and that does a great disservice to those who fought in the conflict.
 


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