A video showing Chinese soldiers in a circle passing an explosive satchel from one man to another, until one of them decides to throw it in a hole just before it explodes, has been making the rounds online, leaving everyone flabbergasted.
Photos of South Korea’s special forces troops training in all kinds of extreme conditions have been showing up on the Internet for a few years now, but nothing those guys go through compares to the shocking drill the Chinese devised. During an exhibition drill in Hong Kong, last month, an elite garrison of 6,000 PLA troops staged a series of impressive exercises for the visit of the island’s chief executive, Sir Donald Tsang. Snipers shot tiny glasses, soldiers carried heavy logs and jumped through rings of fire, but nothing as incredible as a group of men playing a game of pass-the-bomb.
The lethal game is played by six soldiers standing in a circle with a dug whole in the middle. They pass an explosive satchel from one two another, counting down until it detonates. Just before it explodes, one of the soldiers throws it in the hole and they all leap away as the ground trembles and dirt starts flying from the pit. Any miscalculation could mean the end for all six players, but they don’t seem very intimidated by that. They just calmly pass the live satchel as if it were a simple bag.
One PLA officer said drills like pass-the-bomb were designed to improve “psychological strength” and forge “fighting spirit” through “nearly impossible tasks”. CCTV added that this kind of exercise helps soldiers remain calm when confronted with real emergencies. Well, if holding a live bomb in your hand doesn’t freak them out, I don’t know what will.