Wednesday, 10 April 2013

Prisoners of War in World War 2

                                               Prisoners of War in World War 2
During World War 2, many combatant as well as non combatant prisoners were heald in prison camps. There are many examples of  poor treatment that these people went through such as the allied soldiers caught  by The Empire of Japan in the pacific. In the eyes of the Japanese, these men were considered cowards for surrendering because the japanese never surrendered. As a result, the soldiers were murdered, beat, forced into hard labour, inclined to medical experiments, were given poor medical treatment and as you can see in the picture above, starved. However, in 1929 the Empire of Japan signed the Geneva Conventions stating:
  • Shown respect at all times
  • Allowed to notify their next of kin and the International Red Cross of their capture.
  • Allowed to correspond with relatives and to receive relief parcels.
  • Given adequate food and clothing
  • Provided with shelter equivalent to those of their captor's troops
  • Given medical care
  • Paid for any work they do
  • Sent home if seriously ill or wounded provided they agree not to resume active military duties afterwards.
  • Quickly released and sent home when the war is over.
  • Prisoners of war must not be:
  • Forced to give any information except their name, rank and number
  • Deprived of money or valuables without a receipt and guarantee they will be returned at the time of release
  • Given individual privileges other than on grounds of health, sex, age or military rank
  • Held in close confinement e.g. solitary confinement unless they have broken any laws. They can however have their freedom restricted for security reasons.
  • Be forced to do military or dangerous or unhealthy work.

As you can see, the Japanese didn't follow the Geneva Convention and treated these men very poorly.


  1. Great information, Graham. Do you think Japan should face punishment for ignoring the Geneva Convention and clearly abusing the right of PoW?

  2. Why do you think that the Japanese soldiers didn't respect the Geneva Convention and enemy POW's rights?