KEITH Hellawell, ex-police chief, states rightly (Examiner, November 14), that rape is a heinous crime and both political parties have not provided an answer. Perhaps an American policy might do the trick.

My friend, a local Meltham shopkeeper now in his eighties, was a trainee navigator at the beginning of the war in 1940. He was sent, along with others, to Canada to complete his pilot-navigator training via America. His troopship sailed to New York first. On arriving in New York the troops left the ship. Going down the gangway the RAF officers were met by a large American military policeman handing out small booklets to all the troops.

The booklet was called Welcome to America, explaining the rules and regulations for visitors to their country. On the first page of the booklet it stated the penalty for rape in America was death.

My friend’s pal turned and asked him: “What’s rape?”. Neither of them knew its meaning or what it meant. That’s just 67 years ago! Perhaps the Americans had the right idea.

g brook