The Army’s Iraq Simulator

robotmannequinLast November, Public Radio International’s Here and Now broadcast a news story about the U.S. Army’s 1,000-square-mile National Training Center at Fort Irwin, in California’s Mohave Desert — an urban warfare simulator now being used to train soldiers bound for the real Iraq. Now a documentary film about the site, Full Battle Rattle, follows an Army battalion and role-playing insurgents “as they attempt to quell an insurgency and prevent Medina Wasl, a mock Iraqi village, from slipping into civil war.” Fake body parts, robot mannequins, costumed American and Iraqi actors, and Killed In Action cards are all part of the mix.