Keefer testifies and is a huge disappointment to the defense, denying any evidence of insanity in Queeg and even speaking against Maryk. Greenwald chooses not to cross-examine Keefer. Challee calls Paynter and Harding to help excuse Queeg's decision to deny the officers sleep. Urban also testifies, denying that the captain acted crazily. In his cross examination, Greenwald asks Stilwell to explain the towline cutting incident, but Challee objects, and the entire series of questions is stricken from the records. Other members of the crew testify that they had never found Queeg's actions to be crazy. However, on cross examination, Greenwald establishes that none of these crew members are qualified to determine whether Queeg was crazy. Greenwald drinks heavily that night, and Maryk believes his case is hopeless.

Willie does well for Maryk in his testimony. He maintains that the captain had lost control of the ship. Willie bluntly says that the captain was terrified, and gave orders only after Maryk suggested them. Willie is forced to admit that he was antagonistic to Queeg at times. In the crucial moment of his testimony, Willie is asked whether he sided with Maryk out of concern for Queeg's mental state or out of personal dislike of Queeg. Willie cannot bring himself to lie in court for Maryk's sake and says he cannot remember how he felt. In his cross- examination, Greenwald asks Willie why he disliked Queeg, and Willie talks about Queeg's cowardice. All of Challee's objections are overruled, as cowardice in a command is a grave flaw in the Navy. Willie mentions how Queeg smuggled alcohol aboard and then extorted money from Willie to pay for its loss. Captain Randolph Southhard testifies as an expert witness on ship handling and says that Queeg's actions were prudent. Greenwald makes Southard look silly by making him admit that he calls himself an expert despite never experiencing typhoon conditions or sailing on a minesweeper destroyer. Greenwald forces Southard to admit that in extreme circumstances Maryk's decision may have been prudent.


At first, Willie's decision to break up with May seems like a positive sign of his growing maturity. It seems noble of him to decide to stop leading her along and wasting her time. However, Wouk makes it plain to us that Willie loves May, but chooses to take the easy way out and break up with her. Willie is not willing to choose happiness over the money and comfort that comes with making his mother happy. Willie is making the mistake his father warned him against in the last letter he wrote to Willie.

Lieutenant Greenwald is introduced as an eccentric, brilliant, somewhat cocky man. It is Greenwald who introduces the idea that the mutineers were not as righteous as we think they are. We saw events from Willie's point of view, and under the stress of the typhoon, he felt the decision to mutiny was clear. During the court martial, however, other ways of viewing the mutiny begin to filter through. We begin to see the possibility that the crew acted out of spite more than anything else. There were other options in the situation beyond outright removal of Queeg from command. Wouk makes us feel exactly what Willie feels, and in this way we see how it is possible to think one thing in the heat of battle, and something else entirely in the clarity of peacetime. Evidence mounts against the mutiny, including Queeg's appearance in court, the easiness and clarity of his speech, the testimony of the crew who were otherwise not seen in the novel, and the psychological report.

Tom Keefer's testimony finally exposes him as the coward he is. Though he was the one who turned the officers against Queeg and got Maryk to question Queeg's sanity, he lies in court in order to save his career. He even speaks against Maryk. Greenwald immediately understands Keefer's guilt, but does not bring it out in court, knowing that it will be easier to get Maryk acquitted by presenting him as a lone hero, rather than as a member of a disgruntled gang of officers.