An Army of Self-Helpers on NATO's Front Line

At Büdingen, a U.S. Army base near Frankfurt in West Germany, helicopter maintenance crews do much of their work under tents instead of in hangars. They use jury-rigged lighting and, in cold weather, kerosene heaters that military regulations prohibit as safety hazards. Across the road, 36 armed M-60 tanks stand ready to go to war—if they can churn their way out of a vast mudhole that turns into a pond whenever it rains. At Fliegerhorst barracks near Hanau, 15 miles south of Büdingen, helicopter repair crews have taken over the base's only gymnasium....

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!