The Enemy by Pearl S. Buck

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In “The Enemy,” a story set in Japan during World War II, an American-trained Japanese surgeon pulls a wounded American sailor, presumably an escaped POW, from the surf behind his home. At first he and his wife cannot decide what they should do with him. They are unable to put the man back into the sea although they realize he is an enemy and that for fear of the authorities they should do just that.

Against the advice of his wife, and at great risk to his honor, career, position and life, Dr. Hoki hides the wounded American, operates on him, and saves his life. The surgery is successful, and the couple settle into a period of hope and fear as they await the patient’s recovery. As the days and nights pass, Dr. Hoki finds his traditional attitude transformed by the encounter with the American.

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