Thursday, August 20, 2009

Letter 110- July 15, 1944

July 15, 1944
(Camp Reynolds, Pa.)

Dear Mother and Dad,

We’ve been alerted and within the next several days we will ship. I’ve received all new clothing including the new type field jackets, gas masks, inside-out shoes and so forth. Evidentially we’re to be a part of a Class “A” shipment which means—swish ! This I shouldn’t just say but it’s a pretty safe bet that we’re going to Europe since our issue is medium heavy—just about suited to English climate—but one can never tell.

You probably want to know why the urgent wire for 25 smackers. You may have guessed it. I and about half the fellows in the company were robbed of a total of about $500.00. There’s nothing lower in a military society than a thief due to small wages and inadequate means of protecting one’s property. Our first sergeant is going to have a shakedown arraigned, I think; and he says we may do with him what we please before they Court Martial him. In the 44th Inf. Div. they nailed a thief to a wall literally by his hands and feet (I’m not kidding). I think we’d be satisfied to merely break all his fingers. (this is fairly common.) He got over $27.00 from me as well as the wallet and my stamps. The only hope I have of catching up with the bast’d—is if he’s fool enough to use those Special Delivery stamps. I’m the only one in the Co. who uses them regularly. However I’m flat and with shipping and all I don’t know when I’ll be payed.

By tonight’s paper I see that the Japs are murdering our fliers again. God, I can’t understand why we feel so obliged to follow the International Law with the Japs. We might as well give them the guns with which to kill our boys. If it were up to me I’d give ‘em some really good doses of poison gas like their giving the Chinese, and second, I’d blow Tokyo—hospitals, Emperor’s Palace and all right off the map. To hell with this cricket stuff. I’d show them they’re only amateur rats compared to us. The same with the Germans who fight as long as they can kill us without endangering themselves, but give up when the going gets tough. I hardly call it a victory when a lot of Americans have to die while Germans live to raise another generation of “scum”.

Hope your cold is better, Mudder. I have a slight one but it’s pretty well sweated out of me.

I see the “Great Man” has with great reluctance decided to run again. That’s like me accepting $1,000,000 with great reluctance. I’ll close on that sour note.

Best Love


  1. Bill's outrage at the Japanese murders of fliers is understandable and the intended result of publicizing these atrocities. The accounts were true and the incidents continued. The Nazis encouraged German civilians to kill downed fliers and they did.

    Fast forward through the bloody campaigns for Iwo Jima and Okinawa and the horrific attacks by the Kamikazes, and consider the decision to use nuclear weapons on Japan.

  2. After the surrender of Germany my father was slated for shipment to the Pacific theater and preparations to invade Japan. Needless to say, he had no problem with Truman's decision to drop the Atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. He was grateful to the day he died.


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