Men accustomed to torture and summary execution could not be expected to behave with nicety

Thursday, September 3rd, 2020

Counterattacking on Hill 303 near Waegwan, the 5th Cavalry Regiment came across a group of American soldiers, T. R. Fehrenbach explains (in This Kind of War), twenty-six mortarmen of the Heavy Weapons Company, who had been captured earlier by the NKPA:

These men lay packed shoulder to shoulder, their feet, bare and covered by dried blood, thrust out stiffly. They had been shot in the back by Russian-made submachine guns. Each man’s hands were bound tightly behind his back with cord or telephone wire.

And along the Perimeter front, as the battle increased in intensity and bitterness, worse atrocities were discovered. American soldiers were found who had been burned and castrated before they were shot; others had their tongues torn out. Some were bound with barbed wire, even around the head and mouth.

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Men accustomed to torture and summary execution all their lives, both from Japanese and Communist rulers, could not be expected to behave with nicety toward foreign captives. Nor did they.

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