Guerrilla Parties: Considered with Reference to the Laws and Usages of War

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D. Van Nostrand, 1862 - Guerrilla warfare - 22 pages
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Page 8 - War. Others connect with it the idea of intentional destruction for the sake of destruction, because the guerrilla chief cannot aim at any strategic advantages or any regular fruits of victory. Others, again, associate with it the idea of the danger with which the spy surrounds us, because, he that today passes you in the garb and mien of a peaceful citizen, may tomorrow, as a guerrilla-man, fire your house or murder you from behind the hedge.
Page 8 - Thus many persons associate the idea of pillage with the guerrilla band, because, not being connected with the regular army, the men cannot provide for themselves, except by pillage, even in their own country — acts of violence with which the Spanish guerrilleros sorely afflicted their own countrymen in the Peninsular War. Others connect with it the idea of intentional destruction for the sake of destruction, because the guerrilla chief cannot ģim at any strategic advantages or any regular fruits...
Page 18 - They do not stand on the regular pay-roll of the army, or are not paid at all, take up arms and lay them down at intervals, and carry on petty war chiefly by raids, extortion, destruction, and massacre, and who cannot encumber themselves with many prisoners, and will, therefore, generally give no quarter. They are peculiarly dangerous, because they easily evade pursuit, and, by laying down their...
Page iv - ... the right to send men, in the garb of peaceful citizens, to waylay and attack our troops, to burn bridges and houses, and to destroy property and persons within our lines. They demand that such persons be treated as ordinary belligerents, and that when captured they have extended to them the same rights as other prisoners of war; they also threaten that if such persons be punished as marauders and spies they will retaliate by executing our prisoners of war in their possession.
Page 8 - Others connect with the guerrillero the idea of necessitated murder, because guerrilla bands cannot encumber themselves with prisoners of war; they have, therefore, frequently, perhaps generally, killed their prisoners, and of course have been killed in turn when made prisoners, thus introducing a system of barbarity which becomes intenser in its demoralization as it spreads and is prolonged. Others, again, connect the ideas of general and heinous criminality, of robbery and lust with the term, because...
Page 16 - Nor can it be maintained in good faith, or with any respect for sound sense and judgment, that an individual — an armed prowler — (now frequently called a...
Page 10 - The brigand is, in military language, the soldier who detaches himself from his troop and commits robbery, naturally accompanied in many cases with murder and other crimes of violence. His punishment, inflicted even by his own authorities, is death. The word brigand, derived as it is from briguer, to beg, meant originally beggar, but it soon came to be applied to armed strollers, a class of men which swarmed in all countries in the middle ages. The term has, however, received a wider meaning in modern...
Page 20 - ... places, are proved upon them, leaving the question of selfconstitution unexamined. The law of war, however, would not extend a similar favor to small bodies of armed country people, near the lines, whose very smallness shows that they must resort to occasional fighting and the occasional assuming of peaceful habits, and to brigandage. The law of war would still less favor them when they trespass within the hostile lines to commit devastation, rapine, or destruction. Every European army has treated...
Page 13 - AM — that is, seven hours before the French vanguard entered Berlin. The letter fell into the hands of Napoleon. It is well known that the emperor, at the supplication of the princess, allowed her husband to escape the penalty of a spy. Whatever may be thought of the question, whether the prince, by sending the letter at the hour mentioned, became a spy or not, no one has ever doubted that, had he secretly corresponded with his government after the occupation of Berlin by the French, giving information...
Page 17 - ... of his country, or because his government or his chief has issued a proclamation by which he calls upon the people to infest the bushes and commit homicides which every civilized nation will consider murders. Indeed, the importance of writing on this subject is much diminished by the fact that the soldier generally decides these cases for himself. The most disciplined soldiers will execute on the spot an armed and murderous prowler found where he could have no business as a peaceful citizen....

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