Whatever the circumstances, the basic, decent fact remains: American soldiers must not be abandoned, for whatever reason -- a principle that has been upheld throughout history, war after war after war.
Nothing demonstrates how war has changed more than the fact that thousands of soldiers become prisoners of war (POW) or went missing in action (MIA) in previous conflicts whereas now, with the release of Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, there are no American POWs.
It is time for Japan's companies to apologize to the POWs and establish a program of remembrance. Our blood and despair helped sustain them. I do not want compensation. I simply ask for a genuine apology and that my presence be remembered.
It would be betrayal of the sacrifices of Americans like my grandfather to selectively prosecute the low-level offenders at Abu Ghraib and ignore the policy makers who set the violations of the Geneva Convention in motion.