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Ms. "The First World War"

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page 17

the authorities no doubt he would have had something worse to say about us. On the day we were questioned concerning non-combatant service we were taken individually into company headquarters where a few officers and a stenographer were seated. The inquest was conducted by our Captain S. Each of some forty boys was examined separately. I was among the last ones called and as usually [sic] on such hearings the patience of officers lasted about so long, then the nervous tension demanded a release. When my turn came to enter the “sweat box” for the grilling, I had about the same to say as all the others before me, (there was not much variety) my questions had reached the saturation point, and the statements made by me or something in my bearing caused an explosion. The last straw will break a camel’s back, and I was the last straw in this instance. He swore to his heart’s content. There are elements or forces in the unregenerate man which do not yield to rules of discipline, nor will they always be held in subjection as the result of mere moral or ethical training. There is only one power potent enough to cope with these forces inherent in the natural man; that power is the gospel of Jesus Christ which is the “power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth” Roman[s] 1:16. Another investigation of this sort, but many times as intensive was held in spring of 1918. It was conducted by two officers who claimed to have come direct from Washington D.C. to “help us”. They purported to be students of theology and also psychologists with plenty of experience. Their mission was to give the C.O.’s a mental test and see if we were sincere. At first we received the regular army intelligence test, in which we answered several sheets of questions on many different subjects. Then these men had heart to heart talks with the

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