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HASTY ENTRENCHMENT UNDER FIRE

The work must be done by the men lying prone on the left side.

Men first shift their positions as necessary to obtain a clear field of fire to the front. The work is then executed as follows:

Lie back about 2 feet from the selected position and to the left of it, head at the point X, Figure 289. Tear up any vegetation available, and heap it up loosely as a screen at full arm's length to the front.

Lying on the left side and using the intrenching tool, hack the earth loose into a furrow about 1% feet to the right of the body and extend it as far to the front and rear as possible. Scoop out the earth and heap it close in front of the left eye and shoulder.

Dig toward the body from the original furrow so that the blade of the intrenching tool is worked under the hard surface crust. Continue to scrape the earth toward the parapet and to widen the trench until it is about 11/2 feet wide. Any lumps available should be used to build up the near edge of the parapet as steeply as possible. The earth should be so disposed as to thicken the parapet in a line between the head and the point from which the most accurate fire appears to come, or, if necessary, extend the parapet in the shape of a horseshoe around the front of the trench.

When the depth of the trench reaches about 6 inches in front and 12 inches in rear, and the parapet is 6 inches high and bullet-proof (a thickness equal to the length of the rifle is sufficient), some vegetation if any is available, should be scattered over the parapet to conceal the fresh earth.

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Each man must be ready to lay down his intrenching tool and to resume firing with his rifle at any stage of the work.

Adequate cover at close range can not be obtained in less than 35 minutes. This form of trench is ineffective against shrapnel fire. A rifle pit from 112 to 2 feet deep and as narrow as practicable, with a parapet

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Fig. 289. —Early stages of intrenchment by riflemen lying prone in the

open, using intrenching tool under fire. If under shrapnel fire all efforts should be directed toward making a deep hole and not a shallow trench

about 1 foot high, is the best hasty shelter against artillery fire.

To construct such cover from the skirmisher's trench, excavate the pit at the point occupied by the elbows, until sufficient cover has been obtained.

PART SEVEN

MISCELLANEOUS

935

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