Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 91.djvu/135

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Separating Russian Prisoners from Vermin

The Germans have special stations 'on the Eastern frontier for "de-licing " friends or foes from Russia

��GERMANY is more afraid of vermin than of machine guns. To the German military surgeon a filthy Russian Cossack — and there is nothing f il thier — is more to be dreaded than screaming shrapnel.

Germany, in particular, has to deal with the problem in a serious way. Thousands of Russian pris- oners of war have been brought into German con- centration camps literally swarming with lice. One of the accompanying photographs shows four Russian prisoners as they arrived at a camp. Their caps of fur, their whiskers, and their heavy clothes were veritable breeding places for vermin of all kinds. The men were not long in the camp, how- ever, before these caps were discarded, the whiskers and the hair removed, and new clothes supplied. Then they appeared as in the right-hand photograph below.

���One of the disinfecting stations at which the Cossacks are deprived of their fur caps, coats, whiskers and vermin

��Every man, nobleman or commoner, friend or foe, who enters Germany from Russia must be "de-liced." There are special stations along the eastern frontier for that pur- pose. Even royalty is not spared. Prince Adelbert, one of the Empe- ror's sons, had to be thorough- ly disinfected and purified, not because he needed it, but because it was the military law. He re- ceived a guard- edly phrased certificate to the effect that "His Royal Highness, Prince Adelbert, is, for the time being, free from lice." The military disin- fectors were not guaranteeing the future. Provision is made in all armies for the extermination of bacteria-carrying insects. All men occupying the same quarters at the same time, or for alternating short periods of time, are regarded as a single unit and are transferred to a receiving station equipped with cleansing apparatus.

���Photos (Q) Brown and Daw

This is a "Before and After" photograph. At left four Russians are shown as they appeared when first taken prisoners. They came out of the de-licing station cleaner i| not happier men


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