This column was penned by Marion Hargrove
(pictured) and cartoonist Ralph Stein
in order to clear away some of the Hollywood blarney and set the record straight about the U.S. Navy submarines during the Second World War:
"This is really a lot of Navy propaganda, designed to keep surface fleets from being stripped of their personnel by a rush of volunteers for submarine duty."
"After finishing boot camp (if he survives it), the submarine sailor comes here to New London to the training school, where he learns the intricacies of the hydrophones, the periscopes, the thousands of little gadgets and the john. Then he goes through several chambers of horror."
"The first of these is the pressure chamber, a combination of sewer pipe and pressure cooker. Instructors tuck the men safely in and then turn up the air pressure until the new recruits' hair curls. Then he tells them to keep swallowing. They do. They swallow lumps in their throats. After an incredibly long time, the instructor sticks a fork into them to see if they're done and lets the air out of the chamber. Then he lets the men out."
Click here to read more articles about W.W. II submarines.
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