Examine the case of the prosecution and the defense. Then decide: Which side are you on?

Was There A Basis For Suspicion?

Amboyna commences with a single act, a Japanese mercenary called Shichizo walking on the ramparts of the castle on Amboyna asking questions of a number of Dutch soldiers concerning the defenses of the castle and how often the garrison was changed at night. For the Prosecution, these were suspicious questions designed to probe the castle’s defenses in preparation for a possible assault. For the Defense, they were nothing more than innocent queries that any soldier posted in a perilous region might justifiably ask. Deciding between these two interpretations is crucial for rendering your verdict.

The Prosecution

Shichizo was acting suspiciously, asking questions designed to investigate the weaknesses of the castle. He was found walking at undue hours upon the bulwarks of the castle, and inquiring very curiously of the force and constitution of the garrison, and setting of the watch. He targeted especially the youngest and most inexperienced soldiers, several times in the evening as well as in daytime during the sermons. His questions were timed therefore at the moment when they were most likely to go unobserved and he deliberately selected the most inexperienced soldiers who might be more willing to volunteer this information. Given all these facts, the governor had no choice but to interrogate Shichizo to find out what was going on and when he refused to provide an adequate answer, he was, entirely in accordance with Dutch law of the time, tortured.
“We undertake further for our officers of Amboyna (as also it is true) that the beginning and entrance of this proceeding bcganne upon vehement and well grounded suspicions against the first Japonian in our service.”

The Defense

The whole case rests on a very shaky foundation that does not survive examination. It all starts with the interrogation of a soldier for simply doing his job. Shichizo was a soldier posted in a perilous region and tasked with defending a castle from many different potential enemies. He did nothing but what any soldier may lawfully and should indeed do without blame or just suspicion. It is important for every soldier to know the strength of the place where he serves, and the order and force of the garrison. There was no basis therefore for the governor even to interrogate him and certainly no basis to torture him. Once you understand that the first interrogation was essentially without basis, then you have to dismiss the entire case as every other piece of evidence was acquired via torture.
“the behaviour that this Japon used, and upon which he was apprehended, being none other, then that which is & may be used by any Souldier in the place where he serveth”


Which side are you on?

I'm not sure