I look at the case of Ensign Wesley Frank Osmus and wonder if Americans would ever be forgiven, as the Japanese have been, for doing something like that to a POW.
Then I think of the Rainbow Division’s encounter with the SS guards at Dachau, promptly lining them up against a stone wall and executing them after discovery of the dead stacked like cord-wood and the emaciated, yet surviving, slave laborers in the Nazi’s oldest concentration camp. Outside the Nazi Party’s original stomping ground of Munich. My Dallas cousin Jerry Stover helped liberate Dachau, but if he participated in the executions I never heard about it.
Not precisely equivalent, of course, but similar. My Lai more to your taste? Wounded Knee? My atrocity more profound than yours, theirs, etc.? The head-choppers of ISIS? The RF-PFs I advised in the second half of 1969 routinely executing NVA prisoners? Complained about it; nothing was ever done.
Gen. William Tecumseh Sherman: “War is cruelty, and you cannot refine it.”