Norman Mailer on jungle warfare during the second world war
Today, the Guardian has reprinted an excerpt from The Naked and the Dead that paints a graphic picture of the realities of jungle warfare:
Hennessey froze his body. If I don’t move, I won’t get dirtier, he thought. He remembered Red and Wilson talking about “keeping a tight asshole”, and now he understood what they meant. He began to get the giggles. The sides of his foxhole were crumbling, and he had a momentary pang of anxiety at the thought that they would collapse in the next shelling. He was beginning to smell himself and he felt a little sick. Should he change his pants? he wondered. There was only one other pair in his pack, and he might have to wear them for a month. If he threw these away, they might make him pay for them.