April 29, 2010
On April 17, the Courier-Journal in Louisville, Kentucky, reported on a military exercise dubbed “Mangudai,” named after the special forces of Genghis Khan’s Mongol army who could fight for days without food or sleep. The Kentucky newspaper portrayed the exercise as an effort to train soldiers to battle the Taliban in Afghanistan.
“Designed to test the limits of officers’ physical, mental and emotional endurance, the emerging Army exercise offered a revealing window onto modern combat training in the era of Iraq and Afghanistan,” Chris Kenning wrote for the newspaper. “Over three days last week, participants had to crawl on their bellies under real machine-gun fire, shimmy commando-style over a single rope high in the air and march for more than 22 miles through forests.”...
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FORT KNOX, Ky. — After two days and nights of carrying heavy packs up steep hills, fighting off midnight insurgent attacks and lugging wounded comrades through bone-chilling rains, 1st Sgt. James McWhorter crouched in the woods preparing to assault a Taliban-held Afghan village...