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Old 06-26-2009, 04:53 PM
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Default POW Camps

Before the TDM, at least a few thousand Soviet and WTO POWs would probably have been shipped to camps in the U.S. and Canada.

What happens to them after the TDM? I imagine that priority would be given to taking care of the native DPs over taking care of soldiers of the nations that just nuked a bunch of American cities. Seems like this quandry could be the centerpiece of an interesting and unconventional CONUS/Canada campaign.

The PCs could be guards at a camp. They would have to make sure the POWs were fed, protect them from angry locals and each other, prevent escape attempts, etc. Perhaps there could be issues concerning which government faction (MILGOV and CIVGOV) controls the camp or wants done with the POWs. On the other hand, maybe the PCs could be Soviet/WTO prisoners trying to survive/escape the camp.

I know of a few campaigns where the PCs started off as POWs of the Soviets. It seems like rescuing POWs is a pretty standard mission for behind enemy lines campaigns. Some folks think that after the TDM, accrimony and widespread supply shortages, most sides would simply stop taking prisoners altogether or that POWs would become de facto slaves (I think using POWs as a source of manual labor is permitted by the Geneva Convention but with some limitations in place).

What are your thoughts on POWs in T2K.
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Old 06-26-2009, 05:18 PM
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POW camps normally have 'busy work' for the men and women being held there... Thus I can see the guards putting the POWs to work tending gardens and livestock pens in an effort to not only make the camp as self-sufficent as possible, but to provide excess food stuffs for the guards and surrounding communities. Since the Geneva Conventions state that POWs can be put to work on non-war related duties, and they must be compensated for the work they do, putting them to work tending gardens and the like would be the first thing I can see them being put to work doing. The second would be the POWs being used to clear roadways, or reconstruction efforts of local communities...

Hell, I'd have them building shelters for the D.P. (Displaced Persons) who have been evacuated out of urban centers that had been nuked. The fact that FEMA had plans to put D.P.s to work doing the same kind of work would have POWs put to work doing the more dangerous stuff of course (even though it would technically be a no-no)... Such as having the POWs and their guards going into nuked out areas with high levels of radiation carrying out salvage duties would be a one of the kinds of duties that I could see them put to work doing.
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Old 06-26-2009, 05:47 PM
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The treatment of Russian POW's in the United States after TDM is one place where I have very little faith in how my fellow Americans would act. The best case scenario I see is camps similar to those seen during the US civil war, which were pretty much death camps due to disease and starvation. Post TDM there will be just so much anger at all levels of command I cannot see the POWs getting anything but the bare minimum of food and medical treatment since millions of Americans are dead and millions more are going without. The worst case scenario I see is mass executions.
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Old 06-26-2009, 06:38 PM
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I doubt the few POWs who do make it to N. America will be left to rot like Andersonvil ala the Civil War, some could suffer due to neglect just due to a lack of basic which will be felt by all in society. I don't think the harm brought by civilians will be as greatly felt as some beleive either.

POWs in N, America will be put to work not just to make the camps self sufficient. But also to be a benefit to the community. Remember human labor will be the main source of getting things done. And we will have just had a massive die off as a result of alot of nasty things. Couple it the poor physical condition of a large segment of the society why waste a resource consisting of laree numbers of healthy men who otherwise could be used for the large scale projects that will be now needed?

Remember durring WWII alot of the German and Italian prisoners were contracted out for farm work as well. Farm work not just for their own prison camps but for many farms within the region. Heck, I can look out my backdoor and see the site of an old Italain POW facility where they repaired damaged tents and vehicles.

But, also consider this. Most POW compounds are placed in isolated and rural communities. So, this should keep them from harm for most of reprisals. And by the time things start getting nasty, I think the locals would see the POWs as more of an asset to their community that would be best safeguarded. Further, the isolation as well as the fear of falling into vengance minded locals or refugees would be another incentive to keep the POWs inline and from escaping.

IF I were running the show! I would break the POWs into small groups of a platoon size and put them in rural communities or farms where they could be put to work with say a fire team or two to monitor and safeguard the POWs. Turn them into more or less self sufficient camps or work groups helping a community with its farming or other agricultural industry, or logging camps, or road repair crews or minning or any other number of industries. This way they would be fairly well dispersed so you do not have a massive concentration in any one area making them a target or having a large number of non workers. Of course the loss of a six to eight men to guard them could mount up, but that is what you use wounded who are recovering or no longer fit for front line service, as well as a few locals to suppliment the guard force.
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Old 06-27-2009, 12:46 AM
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I think we can safely envision a number of fates for Soviet EPW. The outcomes would run the gamut from a camp commandant ordering extermination of the population of the camp to mass breakout to the incorporation of the EPW into the local population. Fort Huachuca takes the latter option, but Huachuca may not necessarily have a great deal of company.

After the Thanksgiving Day Massacre (TDM), MG Thomason of Fort Huachuca visits the camps on-post. He offers the prisoners a simple choice: join us, work willingly, and earn US citizenship or live in our own Andersonville. We don’t have the resources to support an indolent population at this point, but we do have the resources to support former enemy soldiers who are pulling their own weight in this disaster. Overwhelmingly, the EPW throw their lot in with their American captors in return for citizenship down the road.

The enlisted men from every nation represented at Huachuca (Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, the Baltics, the Caucasus, Central Asia, Iraq, Poland, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, and North Korea) almost universally embrace Thomason’s proposal. Grunts are pragmatists. The officers, on the other hand, are more aloof. While some join the Americans willingly, others believe they have a responsibility to continue resisting the enemy by any means. Others refuse to admit the loss of status they will undoubtedly suffer. Better to be an officer in prison than a nobody with a hoe or shovel. Among the officers, the lieutenants join the Americans most readily, with participation rates dropping off as rank increases. Also, North Korean and Russian officers join the Americans at lower rates than officers of other nationalities.

The EPW are organized into competing work gangs. Rewards for success are food, small liberties, and so forth. National rivalries between the Eastern Europeans, Russians, and non-Russian Soviets are exploited to encourage the work gangs to try to outdo each other. Among the most important jobs of the work gangs are construction of rammed earth housing and rammed earth fortifications. When the Second Mexican-American War breaks out in June, 1998 the MI troops manning positions at Douglas and Nogales occupy bunkers, trenches, and other fortifications constructed almost entirely by EPW work gangs.

At the end of August, 1998 the active portion of the campaign in Arizona winds down rapidly. The line units of the 111th MI Brigade have suffered nearly 50% losses. Thomason recognizes that the brigade has to rebuild quickly. He turns to the EPW, offering junior enlisted positions to volunteers. On the first day, Huachuca gets more volunteers than can be trained; the post has the luxury of creating a waiting list with former infantry and armor troops moved to the top.

Former Pact, North Korean, and Iraqi EPW are far from the only source of replacements for the 111th Brigade. Wounded soldiers return to duty. Survivors from Yuma Marine Corps Air Station filter in, as do stragglers from Luke AFB. The remnants of USAF 355th Wing at Davis-Monthan are reformed as 355th Battalion. Selected Mexican EPW are offered the opportunity to serve. The surviving populace of SAMAD—nearly 400,000 in 2000—provides a solid base for recruitment. Nevertheless, by June 2000 nearly a quarter of the 111th Brigade are former EPW.

Not every EPW camp in CONUS is going to go this way. Although I see a certain logic in co-opting the enemy’s troops and in the enemy’s troops allowing themselves to be co-opted, not everyone is going to see things this way.

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Old 06-27-2009, 03:56 PM
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Mmmmm...Strangely I must recognize that this is one of those threads were the opinions seems too much coldly logical. I understand that all the options here posted are possible. But I’m pretty sure that the first reaction would be a massacre of an important portion of the POW’s. Improvised, passionated and chaotical acts of violence that will vary from one place or another. At the very first moment, logical and reason would only appear ocasionnaly. Here and there, individual personalities in the local/guard side and in the POW side will make the difference, for the better or for the worse. I can see surreal scenes in communities where some people stepped in to stop their fellow neighbours or guards to conduct a slaughter. Some communies would be so traumatized by the recent events that pehaps they simply would ignore the POW’s. Perhaps everything could change in a few hours or days. But, for the most part, the damage would have been done. Things like logical thought, reason, plannification and recognized authority would come latter. Perhaps too late for a good number of the POW’s. Terrible, non-prepared and illogical slaughters have been perpetrated through history by facts much more meaningless.
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Last edited by Marc; 06-27-2009 at 04:25 PM.
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Old 06-28-2009, 10:06 AM
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If you do some research into POW camps form WWII you'll find organizations like Canada's Veteran's Guard this unit was made up of old soldiers too old or medical for military service. In the US I could see the state guards doing this task along with help form other US agencies FBI, FEMA, ect, and some State's state troopers

On other note I could also see these POW camps a recruiting ground for the CIA and other Intel agencies for Pers who wish to serve on US side in programs like the Kit Carson Scouts from Vietnam. I mean the Soviets would unhappy ethnics like Georgians, Ukrainians, and Estonians.
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Old 06-28-2009, 02:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rcaf_777
On other note I could also see these POW camps a recruiting ground for the CIA and other Intel agencies for Pers who wish to serve on US side in programs like the Kit Carson Scouts from Vietnam. I mean the Soviets would unhappy ethnics like Georgians, Ukrainians, and Estonians.
That's a really good point. As to your previous points, I think most law enforcement agencies would have bigger fish to fry.

As to the camp situation on the whole, I think the situation would vary on the local mood, commander, available resources etc. In some cases, I can see the camp operating relatively smoothly, being run humanely, and cooperating with the local community.

In stressed areas, I can see prisoners more or less left to starve, being subject to active abuse by guards, and even locals attempting to enact "revenge" on the POWs.
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Old 06-28-2009, 09:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marc
Perhaps too late for a good number of the POW’s. Terrible, non-prepared and illogical slaughters have been perpetrated through history by facts much more meaningless.
Good points Marc. The lynch mob is a time honoured tradition the world over.
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Old 06-29-2009, 03:46 PM
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Default Enemy Prisoners

I remember my grandfather talking about having two U-Boat POWs (Engineers)as laborers on his farm during WWII. They were from a camp at Glen Allen, MS. He said that after the war one of them was turned over to the Soviets.
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Old 06-29-2009, 06:29 PM
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Default POW Camps

Here is a list I composed of possible NATO POW Camps.
Attached Files
File Type: doc NATO POW Camps.doc (52.5 KB, 218 views)
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Old 06-29-2009, 09:04 PM
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I like this list. I do believe that there will be many more camps than this, though. Soviet EPW will run well into the tens of thousands. One does not wish to concentrate too many EPW at one location. Bad juju.

Also, I think it's worth exploring the fate of Pact & Pact-Allied EPW after December 1996. I don't know the specifics about the Geneva Convention's requirements regarding capturing nation housing EPW, but I wonder if some hard-charging lawyer couldn't find a loophole to remove all Pact prisoners captured in East Germany during the Pact-West German stage of the conflict to North American camps. After all, it should be easy to find a continental climate in the US or Canada. Both nations are combatants as of the end of 1996. I'm sure all NATO parties involved would prefer to have as much distance as possible between Pact EPW and turf controlled by the Pact and its allies.

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Old 06-29-2009, 09:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Webstral
I'm sure all NATO parties involved would prefer to have as much distance as possible between Pact EPW and turf controlled by the Pact and its allies.
This also answers a question I have had for a long time. What travels back to the US on all those empty cargo ships and planes. POWs, Refugees and wounded soldiers are the first answers I came up with. Perhaps some badly damaged equipment and maybe some captured equipment for detailed analysis.
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Old 06-29-2009, 09:16 PM
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Captured equipment would be another idea so they can be pulled apart and studied.
Civilian refugees trying to get away from the war might be another.
Raw materials from areas captured from the enemy I could see happening, provided miners, etc were brought in to reopen operations and the areas were well enough protected. Raw material demand in wartime is quickly going to outstrip supply in most countries - take the UK in WWII, even shrapnel from enemy bombs during the blitz was collected up and recycled.
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Old 06-30-2009, 12:39 AM
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I'm sure there is mention of escaped WarPac POWs on the east coast of the US in one of the T2K mini-modules in the Challenge mags, A Rock In Troubled Waters perhaps?
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Old 06-30-2009, 09:05 PM
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I'll have to dig thru a couple of boxes of T2K stuff to find that article, but I do remember it. If memory serves, the POWs woke up after TDM to find their guards had all deserted, presumably to look after their families.

One thing that Canadian Army forgot on his list of POW camps: there wouldn't be many, but there were female servicemembers in the Pact Militaries, and North Korea does use women in combat arms. So there would have to be a camp in the U.S. where female POWs would be sent. From what I've read, the U.S. Army now makes sure that combat troops and MPs now know how to handle female prisoners, and that if women and men are captured together, the women are immediately separated from the men. (one of the functions of the "Lioness" teams in Iraq is to search local women, including any who are detained)
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Old 07-01-2009, 03:12 AM
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A couple of thoughts about how I'll be dealing with POW's in my work on the UK.

1. Soviet / Other Warsaw Pact POW's

Pretty much what has already been covered...I have several camps located in the south west of England holding these POW's...during late 1997 / 98 I would propose that most of these camps will cease to exist for a number of reasons, primarily break outs by the prisoners or massacres by the guards (one of the catalysts for such massacres will be the death of the Queen in August 1998). A small number will remain in captivity and carry out what will be effectively slave labour. Of those who successfully escape, the majority will turn marauder, either indepently or in conjunction with British groups.

2. Italian POW's

As the Italians are in combat with the British during the summer of 1997 I think it's reasonable that numbers of Italian soldiers may be taken prisoner by the British Army. As Italy was a NATO ally until very recently I think it's highly probable that there is a considerable number of Italians who are uncomfortable about fighting with the Soviets, and what I will be doing is having what I would call the pro NATO Italians brought back to Catterick in Yorkshire where they would be held as Prisoners but under a relatively relaxed regime.

After the Autumn 98 nuclear attacks on the UK, I have many of these Italian prisoners, many of whom would be officers and NCO's, being recruited into the Territorial units in the North East of England, often as NCO's or junior officers.

(The Pro Pact Italians I have being held in camps in Germany under the same regime as other Warsaw Pact soldiers).
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Old 07-01-2009, 12:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Canadian Army
Here is a list I composed of possible NATO POW Camps.
Do like the list, but as Web points out I think it is too short. I will say I KNOW of two of those camps first hand.. Grafton is about 20 miles as crow flies from where I grew up. Devils Lake (the lake) would bound it on at least two sides at that period, but three now in '09 and half underwater from the lake rise in the past 15 years.

I was in 191 Co (Guard) of the NDANG at Grafton (actually unit was out of Mayville/Hillsboro). We went to ARTEP for summer camp at Ripley the year I was with them. Funny as one of our war time tasks was guarding EPW camps. And there is/was a camp set up at Ripley then. Only one section was acutally wired, and there needed to be some more work done at the location, BUT it would be put into service in maybe two weeks with hard work and an engineer battalion. The towers were there as well as the admin building.

One of our 'tasks' at the ARTEP was make plans for camp security, both internal and external. It was a good unit, too bad they reorganized to a water purification unit. We had guys from three states in the unit and guys that FLEW to drills just to be in the unit. (this was 1977-78 BTW)
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Old 07-01-2009, 02:31 PM
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We in DC working group had discussed this in a few phone conversations. Grae, sorry if you're just hearing this now..I agree the list is too short, and there's no camp for the real hard cases (dedicated communists, Spetsnaz, suspected informers, KGB MRR and Border Guard types, Zampolits..etc.). Trust me, there would be one. Also, a little idea Fighting Flamingo had was to put Western cable TV into the day rooms...something to show the POWs the truth about the war...It's simple, easy and hey..they all know the reputation of the western media.

As for guard forces, we hadn't discussed it...at all, but handing it off to State Guardsmen with little to no training....not good. I like Web's ideas, and they'd probably work very well, along with the recruitment by CIA and others of dissatisfied EPWs.

I also think that once NATO enters the war, China will ship the POWs it has to the US as well. So, there might be a sizable EPW population in the US before long. You also need to remember, that the biggest problem these POW camps are going to have is the nature of the Soviet army, where time in service, not rank, determine functional, if not actual seniority. Most Sergeants in the Soviet Army were men chosen by virtue of political reliability or academic standing to be NCOs from that current conscript class. They simply don't have the institutional experience to be decent NCOs. They can learn...but in a POW camp where things are breaking down anyhow? Many of these Sergeants are going to have a hard time maintaining control of their men...
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