War is bad, we all know that. People fight and die and in the end the side that does the best job of killing and destroying wins. But there is more to war than just people dying on the front lines. There are hidden costs like broken economies and shattered lives. In war there is a winner but in some ways, there are no winners. Everybody loses. One of those hidden losses that is often not considered is the prisoners of war. Prisoners are an aspect of every conflict and although there exist laws that deal with the proper treatment of prisoners, they are often not followed. It is important for us to understand this aspect of war because it is an unspoken story. The struggle of men behind the front lines who got caught by the enemy and were then forced to live numerous, torture filled years in underground bunkers can be quite terrifying to hear about. But in the end it is necessary that we understand the full scale of the conflict from all angles. Auschwitz may not be representative of a comfortable time in human history but if we don’t know about it, we are sure to repeat the same mistakes. These are 25 things you should know about prisoners of war.
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