Rules for Surrendering in a battle

Discussion in 'Prisoners of War' started by vashstampede, Nov 8, 2012.

  1. Vladimir

    Vladimir Siberian Tiger

    Hmm...... are you high on something? Or you have seen too much of Hollywood movies.

    US soldiers have committed some of the worst human rights atrocities ever recorded in the military history.
  2. Pzula

    Pzula New Member

    Surrender is an interesting topic which has fascinated me over many years. I know Japanese samurais had to commit suicide as their form of surrender. Thanks for sharing these others rules of surrendering in a battle.
  3. RcNu

    RcNu Member

    So I'm guessing you've seen them committing mass genocide and rape war fare? When and where?
  4. Akolt

    Akolt Member

    I can't think of any more reasons why they should allow someone to surrender. Those reasons you've stated seems to look like they are the only ones.
  5. ShamarV8

    ShamarV8 New Member

    And still do to this day Vladimir. In regards to the question the OP posed though I believe another cause for surrender would be the threat of massive civilian causalities.
  6. Vladimir

    Vladimir Siberian Tiger

    Serbia - 1999
    Iraq, Afghanistan - Ongoing.
  7. blindwarrior

    blindwarrior Member

    Surrendering is usually a double edged sword. It really depends on the situation and the commander of the opposing force, for example the Germans usually took American POW's, but if you had the unfortunate "luck" of being captured by an SS unit, you were probably dead in a matter of hours.
    Generally speaking the conduct of war is rarely adhered to in the strictest form. When you are trying to kill the other guy and he's trying to kill you, it's hard to stand back and take an objective view before deciding to shoot him or capture him.
  8. Akolt

    Akolt Member

    Back in that time I don't think the generals liked to see their men surrendering. I think if you surrendered you were punished with death.
  9. blindwarrior

    blindwarrior Member

    Which "time" are you talking about? If the men surrendered they were now in enemy hands, there wasn't much their own commander could do. Also it would have been foolish to kill them off, after they were saved. It would have been a waste of man power.
  10. Steed

    Steed Member

    I think there's another legitimate rule that permits you to surrender in battle, and that is if you've been forced by a dictator to take up arms against someone you consider your own side fighting for liberty.

    For example, when France fell to the Germans in May, the Vichy government installed by the Nazis ordered all French forces to be subject to the Vichy regime. If I had been in that situation (and lucky enough to have had the opportunity) I would have run to join sides with all available equipment to any side fighting Vichy, and been proud of it.
  11. Akolt

    Akolt Member

    I agree with you man, dying without honor will affect your family name.
  12. groundhugger

    groundhugger Member

    Sometimes the decision to surrender is not yours to make it could be an order from above , in WW2 vast numbers on both sides were ordered by respective High Commands to chuck in the towel ,
    The personal decision by an individual in a combat situation , differs in that it has as much to do with ths captors as much as the surrendee , if youve just killed a few of his comrades a few moments before ,waiving a white flag and expecting to walk into captivity could be problematical at best , so a lot depends on who your captors are and their state of mind at the time.
  13. Interrogator#6

    Interrogator#6 Active Member

    Judging from the myriad of answers given here on this subject I see this as an opportunity to do some teaching on a subject I do, indeed, know something. My qualifications are that I was trained as a US Army Interrogator in the proper way of handling enemy soldiers according to international law of land warfare. I have also studied Japanese culture, Bushido, as well as State SHINTO. The combination of the later two subjects give insight into Japanese attitudes towards surrender as well as POWs in WWII.

    The Law of POWs is properly called the Geneva and Hague Conventions. There have been revising conventions periodically but the basic concepts have remained consistent since the nineteenth century. Nations sign hoping that there will be reciprocity, that their own soldiers will receive fair treatment, but there is nothing binding on countries who have not signed the conventions, and during WWII Japan was not a signatory power of the convention.

    The convention is not binding to non-signatory powers, and the legal mechanism only binds a power after they sign to act in a way one hopes other nations will.

    In "the West" it is thought that there is value in LIFE over DUTY. In Japan prior to the end of WWII and the de-militarization of their institutions all school children were taught a standardized curriculum which included something called STATE SHINTO. Briefly, they were taught in school of the divinity of their god -- the Emperor -- and that everyone had a duty and an obligation to him. Also they were taught, since the Meiji Restoration (1858?) that the Japanese were a chosen people, and each citizen had obligations to Society as a whole. This was combined with the idea that only the person without HONOR surrendered, which explains why many Japanese were mystified why so many of their opponents surrendered.

    But signatory powers of the Geneva and Hague Conventions understand that there can be a honorable way of surrender. Eventually the state of war will end and soldiers will return to civilian society, where they make their contributions to the institutions of their society. The Japanese mind prior to the end of WWII had not made this epiphany. For them it was a fanatical devotion to the God-Emperor.

    More later, to be continued....
  14. Interrogator#6

    Interrogator#6 Active Member

    If on is captured on a "field of conflict" in a modern battle by a nation, state, or signatory power to the Geneva and Hague Conventions then one has certain rights and obligations. A POW is obliged to give correct answers to NAME, SERVICE NUMBER, and DATE OF BIRTH. The capturing power is obliged to record this and other information, such as medical condition and weight of POW, then pass this information on to a "third party" (usually implied to be the Swiss, a neutral party, or the Red Cross/Red Crescent organization).

    The holding power is obliged to house and maintain (feed, clothe, keep safe and healthy) POWs. POWs are not to be unduly punished, or tortured.

    POWs may be separated according to: Officers, Non-Commissioned Officers, "Other Ranks". Officers are to receive their regular service pay, are usually exempt from obligatory labor, are usually recognized as obliged to try to escape. Other Ranks may be used as Labor or a nature such as to not to be "war work", for which they are to be paid.
  15. thomas pendrake

    thomas pendrake Active Member

    During the War Between the States "black" Confederate soldiers did not surrender because they were not allowed to. The Northern commanders did not want Northern civilians to see them. This was an unofficial policy and was not as prevalent early in the conflict.
  16. Interrogator#6

    Interrogator#6 Active Member

    During the ACW, or War between the States, When did the South start to field Blacks as combat soldiers?

    Please forgive my ignorance but I thought it was the policy of the CSA to employ Blacks as military labour, not as combat fighters. Please enlighten me.
  17. thomas pendrake

    thomas pendrake Active Member

  18. nailah783

    nailah783 Member

    Sometimes they want their soldiers to commit suicide so that information cannot be tortured out of them. Every country has their own feelings about this.

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