From Melting Glaciers, WWI 'Mummies' Emerge
Retreating ice reveals those who fought in the 'White War' in Italy's Alps
By John Johnson, Newser Staff
Posted Jan 16, 2014 1:40 PM CST
File photo from the Alps.   (Flickr)

(Newser) Time calls it "one of the strangest consequences of global warming yet"—glaciers are melting in the Italian Alps and revealing the mummified corpses of soldiers from World War I. Two, for instance, were buried in unmarked graves last year in the village of Peio, reports the Telegraph, which digs into the history of the "White War" fought on mountaintops between soldiers from Italy (called the Alpini) and Austria (the Kaiserschützen). "They feel contemporary," says a local archeologist, who adds that he immediately thought of the young men's mothers upon seeing their bodies. "They come out of the ice just as they went in."

The melting ice also is revealing the contraptions used by both armies to fight at altitudes of 6,500 feet or more, including makeshift cable-transport systems to get troops to the peaks, along with diaries and even love letters. As it turns out, the brutal weather conditions killed more men than actual fighting, and a forensic anthropologist is attempting to identify remains as they surface. Click for the full Telegraph piece, or click to read about another unusual find in the Alps.

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Showing 3 of 23 comments
Jan 18, 2014 10:56 AM CST
It seem commonplace when long dead military personnel are found to take pains to honor them. They will never know; and they will never experience any pleasure or satisfaction from it. Why cannot we honor them by taking pains on behalf of persons who are still living instead!
Jan 17, 2014 3:56 AM CST
Give it 5 years and the glaciers will reveal Hannibal's elephants
Jan 16, 2014 7:26 PM CST
Ötzi blows them away!