The culprit was acute dysentery, which apparently was so bad that the German medical corps concluded it was killing more soldiers than Allied attacks. In a state of emergency, Germany sent over their best chemists and doctors to find a cure (history does not indicate whether they were aware of the pun-rife irony of a bunch of assholes shitting themselves to death). Despite the Third Reich's greatest minds all working in unison, they were initially unable to make any progress.
In desperation, they looked to the Bedouins, who seemed immune to the disease. What they discovered was that whenever a Bedouin caught dysentery, he or she would immediately eat a fistful of steaming camel droppings.
This made the camels much happier than it had any right to.
This somehow cured the disease, presumably because, while dysentery may be a malignant stomach-shredding condition, even it has standards. The Nazi scientists went to work on the camel poop and discovered the presence of Bacillus subtilis, a bacterium that seemed to be the only thing that could directly counter dysentery, sort of the Luke to its Anakin or the Batman to its Joker.
B. subtilis is still used today to combat virulent bacteria. In fact, it's used much in the same way as before. Doctors in Tampa, Florida, were able to cure a woman from a fatal bacterium by literally straining a healthy person's poop and then feeding it to her. The practice, known as a fecal transplant, is becoming more and more common to kill bacteria that have evolved to be immune to antibiotics, though we imagine the bedside discussion must be something to see.
"We're going to fill this entire area with s**t. Then maybe you can reconsider the tone you take with our nurses."
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For more unexpected world changers, check out 5 Ways Porn Created the Modern World and The 7 Most Disastrous Typos Of All Time.