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Should War Crimes Go Unpunished?

  • Date Submitted: 01/28/2010 06:13 AM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 37.1 
  • Words: 867
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Individuals should absolutely be held personally responsible for their actions during wartime. Soldiers and other members of the armed services are in the armed services to protect and serve the people of their country; the brave people in the armed services are there to ensure the safety of their citizens. These men and women are not, however, there to commit any crimes against civilians; violent or not.

During the Nazi rule over Germany during World War II, heinous and brutal crimes were committed against people that were deemed as unworthy or “impure” Germans (both German citizens and citizens of many other countries). Basic human rights were seriously violated; innocent people were savagely and senselessly murdered, brutalized, tortured, robbed, enslaved in camps, starved, used as guinea pigs in “medical” experiments, and held against their will in concentration camps (where most of these heinous acts against the human race took place). It is estimated that no less than 12 million people were murdered by the Nazi government; and probably more. The victims of the Nazi government were lied to; and their right to know what the government knows was blatantly ignored. Soldiers shouldn’t be exempt of criminal punishment simply because they wear a uniform.   The badge they wear doesn’t make them any more or less deserving of their rights than any other law-abiding citizen, so why is it that they are even being considered for immunity of indictment for horrible crimes? Some argue that these soldiers acted under the command of their superiors; and that they would be risking their career and their lives in refusing to commit crimes against people. However, before you have any obligation to the government; you have a moral obligation and a duty to your people to refuse to commit a crime against someone. Suppose your commanding officer told you to shoot your best friend. Would you do it, justifying it as an act out of loyalty to your country and the government? Some...

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