Japanese Pow Camps

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“ A minute of pain is worth a lifetime of glory.” (Hillenbrand, 34) This quote came from Pete Zamperini, the brother of Louie Zamperini. This is the quote that gave this amazing athlete and war veteran, Louie Zamperini, the endurance to go through all the obstacles in his life during World War II. World War II was a horrible war in which the horrible axis powers lead by a cruel dictator, Adolf Hitler, against the allied powers fighting for true justice. During the war, many allied soldiers, especially from the U.S, were captured when fighting against europe and japan. They were called prisoners of war or POWs for short. Countries, such as Germany and Japan, did not follow the set laws, enacted by the Geneva Convention, that were made to protect …show more content…
Most of the Japanese POW camps involved doing hard labor for war profit. The prisoners were put to work in mostly mines, fields, shipyards, and factories with only the energy they got from only 600 calories or less a day. Some of the camps were located at mine sites. In the these mine sites, POWs were forced to work in dark tunnels with little light, rusty rail carts, low cave ceilings, and sometimes with a constant drip of acidic water that could easily eat through your skin immediately. They were forced to work in hot and dangerous tunnels that miners refused to go in no matter the amount of copper in contained. The POWs had barely anything to eat, boiled sweet potato vines and some rice. Diseases like dysentery, pellagra, beriberi, ulcers, pneumonia, diphtheria took over most of the Japanese POWs, leading to the guards forcing them to start digging their own grave. Some POWs even had to dig underground tunnels and fox holes for the Japanese to hid in during fighting. Red Cross flew packages of food to these POWs, but the greedy guards took them for themselves and almost all of the food was not distributed to the POWs. The Japanese barracks were so overcrowded that there were five to six men in one man’s bed. The Japanese camps were merciless that if american troops came close to liberating the camps they would kill all the POWs. The Japanese believed in fighting to death until they won or were all destroyed, which lead to the POWs being kept for a very long time. Being a Japanese prisoner of war was not only dehumanizing but

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