Thoughts on the military and military activities of a diverse nature. Free-ranging and eclectic.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005


This is coolbert:

It seems that the American 101st Airmobile Division is not alone in wanting to mentally "toughen" their troops for the mental stress of combat.

You may recall the previous blog I made on the topic. Officers and senior NCO's of the division, prior to deploying to Iraq, are having to view an autopsy and actually handle human body parts. Prepare them for what they will see and maybe also have to handle in the war environment.

Israel too is taking measures to toughen and condition their troops mentally for the rigors of combat.

Some sort of "smell of death in a can". Chemicals that smell like a decomposing body. Evidently the smell of a decomposing body, when encountered by those entering combat for the first time, has a pronounced and adverse effect. This is to be expected. Similar to seeing a dead body during combat operations for the first time. You know it happens, but seeing it up close and in person for many is a shock nonetheless. Intellectually you can prepare yourself, but emotionally it is a different matter.

"Bottles containing the ‘smell of dead bodies’ were scattered around the simulated ‘disaster site’ to provide a feeling of real-life disaster,” Ynetnews reported."

"During incidents extending over a long period of time ... it takes a while to reach the dead trapped under rubble, and their bodies decompose," seminar commander Yisrael Rozin said in the article. "the smell gets stronger and it can shake you the first time you encounter it."

"shake you the first time you encounter it."

This is intuitive, is it not??!!

The smell of death on the battlefield is not just from body decomposition alone. All adult humans, at any given moment, usually have from two to six pounds of solid waste inside of us. The stuff you flush down the toilet. YOU KNOW!!

The human being, when mortally wounded, quite often goes into shock, loses control of their voluntary muscular functions, and evacuates their bowels. The smell of solid human waste only exacerbates the decomposing body odor. Expanding gases from decomposition, furthermore, will cause expansion of the inward parts of the human body, also causing the bowels to evacuate. The solid waste will be pushed out, sometimes DAYS later!!

Foul, overpowering smells from decomposing bodies and solid human waste are also again often on the battlefield exacerbated by the smell of burning corpses. Fire weapons such as flame throwers, napalm, HEAT [high-explosive-anti-tank] rounds and fire caused by other modern weaponry quite often kills on the battlefield. The smell from a human corpse on fire is said to be very foul and overpowering. Once again, it is just not the human body that is burning, it is the solid waste within the dead body being burned as well that contributes to the stench.

During the American Civil War, sometimes weeks would pass before the dead were removed from the battlefields [given the tactics of the time, you might very well end up with a very small amount of land being littered with hundreds if not thousands of bodies, all dying on or about the same time!!!].

Newly freed slaves were quite often put to work policing the battlefields of the dead, from both armies.

\The smell of death was said to last for WEEKS.

And once again, those expanding gases from WITHIN the decaying human body were responsible for all sorts of strange phenomenon. Howling, moaning, and body movement from the dead even days after death were reported to be quite common. The people laying on the battlefield WERE dead. The source of these phenomenon [expanding internal gases from decomposition] were just not understood by the lay person or even those in the medical profession.

Click here to read further on this topic.



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