Confronting Captivity: Britain and the United States and by Arieh J. Kochavi

By Arieh J. Kochavi

How used to be it attainable that the majority of the approximately 300,000 British and American troops who fell into German palms in the course of international conflict II survived captivity in German POW camps and back domestic virtually once the struggle ended? In Confronting Captivity, Arieh J. Kochavi bargains a behind-the-scenes examine the residing stipulations in Nazi camps and lines the activities the British and American governments took--and did not take--to make sure the defense in their captured infantrymen. predicament in London and Washington in regards to the security of those POWs was once mitigated through the popularity that the Nazi management tended to stick to the Geneva conference whilst it got here to British and U.S. prisoners. Following the invasion of Normandy, although, Allied apprehension over the protection of POWs changed into anxiousness for his or her very lives. but Britain and the USA took the calculated hazard of relying on a rapid end to the warfare because the Soviets approached Germany from the east. eventually, Kochavi argues, it used to be much more likely that the lives of British and American POWs have been spared due to their race instead of any activities their governments took on their behalf.

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Additional info for Confronting Captivity: Britain and the United States and Their POWs in Nazi Germany

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Of the 18,997 British pows in the Stalag in May 1942, a total of 5,678 were interned in the base camp, and 13,319 were dispersed among 272 work camps. Red Cross representatives who visited the base camp in early 1942 reported several shortcomings. Showers functioned irregularly—some prisoners had not had a shower in three months; paillasses (straw mattresses) had never been changed; and lice were still to be found. Medical supplies were inadequate, their use and distribution restricted by the German dispenser even when medical parcels arrived from the brcs.

The rations supplied to German depot troops were similarly superior to those received by British pows. As to Berlin’s suggestion that pows purchase unrationed food, reports from Oflag vii c/h stated that officers in this camp had been unable to purchase anything extra, as there were few supplies, if any at all, in the camp canteens. Reports from other camps indicated that although the canteens in some camps were somewhat better stocked than those in Oflag vii c/h, most of this consisted of potato starch.

In early November 1940, mp Major General A. Knox, Conservative, reprew h i t e h a l l a n d b r i t i s h p ow s 19 senting the Wycombe division of Buckinghamshire since 1924, asked Prime Minister Winston S. ’’ As the Red Cross had been given sole responsibility for the dispatch of parcels to British pows, Knox—who would become a major critic of Whitehall’s handling of the pow problem—proposed that the government appoint one of its ministers to the council of the Red Cross. ≥∑ That Churchill preferred to play down this interrelationship was partly because he realized this could serve to help deflect public criticism of the government.

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