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Desert survival presents unique problems not met in other non-temperate areas. Recognizing this, the Arctic, Desert, Tropic Information Center commissioned Dr. Richard A. Howard to assemble and analyze desert survival experiences of World War II, for the purpose of increasing our knowledge of desert survival techniques and procedures. To know what World War II survivors did, what they thought, and what they recommended after having experienced desert survival conditions is of paramount importance. Sun, Sand and Survival relates and evaluates these experiences.
Dr. Howard, ADTIC consultant, has had long experience in the survival training of military personnel. He is the author of the ADTIC Publication T-100 999 Survived which analyzes 1,000 tropical survival experiences. Dr. Howard’s desert study analyzes 382 successful desert survival episodes and mention is made of an additional 142 individuals who were lost. The stories show how men without desert background or mental conditioning met their desert problems. They include examples of men who left their group and were never heard of again. In the light of our present knowledge of the water requirements of the human body, we know that many could have survived had they had a better understanding of the requirements imposed by the desert. More survivors would have returned in better health and endured less discomfort if advance knowledge had been readily available.