The Enemy in Our Hands by Robert C. Doyle | Books in Review

The Enemy in Our Hands: America’s Treatment of Prisoners of War From the Revolution to the War on Terror <$> is now out in paperback (University of Kentucky, 488 pp., $24.95). That book, first published in 2010, contains an informative chapter on the situation in the Vietnam War.

Author and POW specialist Robert C. Doyle shows that with some notable exceptions,   Americans in general treated their enemy prisoners in Vietnam in accordance with the Geneva Convention rules. The exceptions typically came with VC (rather than NVA) non-uniformed prisoners. The same could not be said about our South Vietnamese allies, who far too often ignored the “fair and humane” dictates of the Geneva Convention rules.

Doyle is a former naval intelligence officer who served two tours of duty in Vietnam (1968 and 1970-71), and has a Ph.D. in American Culture Studies.

He is a Professor of History at the Franciscan University of Steubenville in Ohio. His other books include Return With Honor (1998), A Prisoner’s Duty: Great Escapes in U.S. Military History (1997) and Voices from Captivity: Interpreting the American POW Narrative (1994).

He served as a historical consultant for the Vietnam War POW documentary film Return With Honor (1998), and also has worked as a consultant for the U.S. Air Force’s Joint Personnel Recovery Agency. Doyle also has done historical consulting work on POW subjects for History Channel documentaries and for the Hollywood film Hart’s War (2002), a WWII POW drama.

—Marc Leepson

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