"THE ENEMY IN YOUR HANDS"
(Reproduction of 3x5 card of instructions issued to all troops.)
THE ENEMY IN YOUR HANDS
AS A MEMBER OF THE US MILITARY FORCES, YOU WILL COMPLY WITH THE GENEVA PRISONER OF WAR CONVENTIONS OF 1949 TO WHICH YOUR COUNTRY ADHERES. UNDER THESE CONVENTIONS:
YOU CAN AND WILL
DISARM YOUR PRISONER
IMMEDIATELY SEARCH HIM THOROUGHLY
REQUIRE HIM TO BE SILENT
SEGREGATE HIM FROM OTHER PRISONERS GUARD HIM CAREFULLY
TAKE HIM TO THE PLACE DESIGNATED BY YOUR COMMANDER
YOU CANNOT AND MUST NOT
MISTREAT YOUR PRISONER
HUMILIATE OR DEGRADE HIM
TAKE ANY OF HIS PERSONAL EFFECTS WHICH DO NOT HAVE SIGNIFICANT MILITARY VALUE
REFUSE HIM MEDICAL TREATMENT IF REQUIRED AND AVAILABLE
ALWAYS TREAT YOUR PRISONER HUMANELY
|Lay down your gun||Buong sung xuong|
|Put up your hands||Dua tay len|
|Keep your hands on your head||Dua tay len dau|
|I will search you||Tai kham ong|
|Do not talk||Dung noi chuyen|
|Walk there||Lai dang kia|
|Turn Right||Xay ben phai|
|Turn Left||Xay ben trai|
"The courage and skill of our men in battle will be matched by their magnanimity when the battle ends. And all American military action in Vietnam will stop as soon as aggression by others is stopped "
21 August 1965
Lyndon B. Johnson
THE ENEMY IN YOUR HANDS
1. HANDLE HIM FIRMLY, PROMPTLY, BUT HUMANELY.
The captive in your hands must be disarmed, searched, secured and watched. But he must also be treated at all times as a human being. He must not be tortured, killed, mutilated, or degraded, even if he refuses to talk. If the captive is a woman, treat her with all respect due her sex.
2. TAKE THE CAPTIVE QUICKLY TO SECURITY
As soon as possible evacuate the captive to a place of safety and interrogation designated by your commander. Military documents taken from the captive are also sent to the interrogators, but the captive will keep his personal equipment except weapons.
3. MISTREATMENT OF ANY CAPTIVE IS A CRIMINAL OFFENSE. EVERY SOLDIER IS PERSONALLY RESPONSIBLE FOR THE ENEMY IN HIS HANDS.
It is both dishonorable and foolish to mistreat a captive. It is also a punishable offense. Not even a beaten enemy will surrender if he knows his captors will torture or kill him. He will resist and.make his capture more costly. Fair treatment of captives encourages the enemy to surrender.
4. TREAT THE SICK AND WOUNDED CAPTIVE AS BEST YOU CAN.
The captive saved may be an intelligence source. In any case he is a human being and must be treated like one. The soldier who ignores the sick and wounded degrades his uniform.
5. ALL PERSONS IN YOUR HANDS, WHETHER SUSPECTS, CIVILIANS, OR COMBAT CAPTIVES, MUST BE PROTECTED AGAINST VIOLENCE, INSULTS, CURIOSITY, AND REPRISALS OF ANY KIND.
Leave punishment to the courts and judges. The soldier shows his strength by
his fairness, firmness, and humanity to the persons in his hands.
page updated 31 May 2001
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