I could never forget the night in 1948.
The 19th company were round up by commander in the night.
A deserter who refused to serve in the army was captured by CO.
An urgent call was issued for 19th company Round-up immediately.
It was near midnight. We were all in uniform and with gear in our shoulder.
We did not know what would happen and only knew that a man we knew was arrested and laid down with hands tied by a rope. 2 squad leaders pushed him down on the ground with face touched the dirt. His pants were stripped down to his knee.
Co. commander made a short speech to his men and then ordered each soldiers under his command to whip the deserter' buttocks with bamboo stick扁擔. Any one with faulty whip would be punished by commander himself with same bamboo扁擔 stick.
338 eyes watched the punishment with fear and terror.
The peach dark air were chill and cold.
When the whip started. You could hear the peeling sound of whip mixed with fabric and flashes.
The 1st hauling was low and the victim still tried to hold his heavy breath.
Then the screaming
"Ooouuu.....started." The screaming of pain could be heard miles away.
It was a pitch dark and you could only see the shadow trembling with a
few stars in the sky.
The terror was mounting and 169 soldiers stood there with stiff back waiting for his term to do the whip. I could feel the ice chilling from the neck to my buttock.
The horse shoe shape formation were quite silent and terrified by the screaming sound in the dark night. All soldiers were holding their breath. My palms were sweat cold and waiting for my term......
I was 15 at that time and witnessed the terror of punishment.
It was dark that we could not see what the soldier's look like.
The air was filled with "Fear" and "horror".
The deserter was later carried away .
The scene was still vivid when I tried to recall the incident of punishment.
That was why I was chickened not to leave the army until officially permitted.
I served exactly 20 years and 75 days in the army.
For those who claim that only they were the victim of 228 incident I wish that they think twice before making such a statement.
Remember those of us witness the terror punishment carries the fear all the years until they leave the services. In America, even the death sentence, the law try
to minimize the suffering time of execution.
I envy those of you who are lucky to serve only 3 years and consider you being suppressed by the old KMT government.