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Prisoners of War
Prisoners of War: A Story of Four American Soldiers
Airs Sunday, November 10 at 8 p.m. Prisoners of War tells the story of four World War Two veterans: Harrison Burney (84), William Busier (86), Cliff Austin (79), and Robert Norton (80) - all of whom were captured in the first days of the Battle of the Bulge and imprisoned for the remainder of the war. The hour-long program runs without narration, building its story by inter-cutting excerpts from extended field recordings with each of the men. It begins with the men remembering the chaos and confusion of the battle itself and moves quickly to each man's capture, interrogation, forced march, and transport by rail car to slave labor camps in Germany and Germany-controlled territory. The program focuses in detail on the fabric of daily life in these camps, particularly starvation, disease and the brutality of the German guards. It follows the men through their liberation, debriefing, repatriation, and reintegration into American society. And it chronicles their struggle with the life-long aftereffects of trauma and the shame they felt for having surrendered.