Allied War Criminals

Not the usual allegations. These people are responsible for countless unnecessary Allied deaths, and massive failures in Allied campaigns.

Class A War Criminal: Douglas MacArthur. Demanded, got, and squandered massive resources from US to resist Japan in the Philippines, on the basis of his usual excessively optimistic evaluations of his defensive and offensive capacities. Compounded his egotistical excesses by moving substantial supplies and ammunition from Bataan to forward positions he was incapable of defending and which supplies benefited the advancing Japanese when they were running out of their own supplies.

Class B War Criminal: Every US commander and subordinate officer responsible for the largely pointless but hugely costly Hurtgen Forest debacle.

Class B, maybe Class C, War Criminal: Bernard Law Montgomery for consistent timidity in failing to support US forces during Normandy Campaign by holding his forces back from supporting US forces when US forces were no better equipped or supported than were his.

Anyone care to expand on or add to these supposed heroes of WWII?

Wow, I certainly have no love for MacArthur or Montgomery, however, to take such steps would limit military leaders in their ability to plan and execute missions. For example, I believe it was horrible, that the United States Navy had a Japanese officer testify against an American officer after the end of the war. These type actions only serve to undermine our fighting men. Maybe a more appropriate action against MacArthur would be to strip him of his rank?

I believe you’re talking about the USS Indianapolis incident where the Navy sought to scapegoat the Captain and used the Japanese sub commander to give highly contentious testimony against him. This had nothing to do with “war crimes”…

You are correct, however, that is not the thrust of my argument. I propose that charging men like the miss guided MacArthur would inhibit future military leader in their decision making. Generals must be allowed to fail and to put men and material in harms way, otherwise it would not be called risk. I will grant that risk and stupidity can sometimes be one in the same, sometimes. And in the case of MacArthur it seems that his action in the Philippines appear clearly stupid and could have been prevented. His actions only served to get soldiers, marines and sailors killed and drain valuable supplies. And I do not believe he should be court martialed. Stripped of his rank and his honor(s), certainly, treated as a criminal, no indeed.

Applying that standard to lower ranks, then you’d be happy for a private whose negligence or incompetence got other soldiers killed, such as by sleeping in a watch post and allowing enemy infiltration (which is pretty much what MacArthur did on a grand scale in the Philippines) to be reduced to a non-existent rank of ‘private minus one’ as a fair punishment?

Because that’s not the punishment that that private could reasonably and rightly expect from his colleagues for failing to do his duty to his section or platoon, yet MacArthur is supposed to be excused for failing to carry out his well understood orders to, among other things, get his bombers off the ground and bomb Formosa. And when he doesn’t, despite repeated requests for that order from his air force commander, he later blames his air force commander for losing half his precious bomber force on the ground.

And you want him treated gently for disobeying orders and incurring massive losses in men and materiel to avoid inhibiting decision making, when gentleness or any other form of consideration was something he never displayed when dismissing subordinates for real or perceived failures?

Maybe MacArthur and other commanders would have been improved if the "pour encourager les autres’ applied to poor old Admiral Byng had been applied to them. After all, the death penalty was still in full force in all Allied nations.

MacArthur’s first problem in the Philippines was that he had only one decision to make, being ordering the air strike on Formosa in accordance with the war plan, and he couldn’t do even that successfully.

Christ knows why he was determined ‘to return’, and why some Filipinos apparently welcomed his return (subject to usual MacArthur propaganda), when he’d f***ked the country beyond belief the last time he was there.

As I said, I have no love for Macarthur. The man trampled the bonus soldiers before the war, got men needlessly killed under his command and was fired by the president.

It funny you should mention a guy on watch falling asleep. I once met a captain in the marines who shot two guys who fell asleep. This was in Nam. He sent them home because they were no good to him or his company. I think we punish the leaders and let the court martial system take care of the lower ranks. If you strip a general like Macarthur, that is one strong punishment. But war crimes, that, in my opinion is to far.

McArthur should have been sacked at the war’s beginning for his failures in the Philippines. He wasn’t however because he was the most political of generals who had friends in high places.