Armed Forces: Preparing for the Worst

Feet tied and hands clutched painfully behind their backs, the U.S. Army officers snaked and wiggled on their stomachs over the dusty, rock-strewn ground. "This way, sickie, crawl to me!" cried one captor. "You're ugly, you know that, sickie? Crawl—remember, we've got a lot worse waiting for you."

The men were not Viet Cong captives but trainees in a gruelingly realistic prisoner-of-war course at Fort Sill, Okla. Roughest of its kind in the Army, the course is designed to toughen artillery-officer candidates for the kind of torture and humiliation under which many prisoners cracked in Korea. In the year since...

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