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A chance to forget the horrors of war
on 15 December 2002
This is the story of the 1914 Christmas Truce when allied and axis forces forgot for a few days about killing, and instead exchanged gifts with each other in No Mans Land.
The Christmas Truce was not an isolated event, enemy soldiers met up with each other all along the Western Front. The author has once again made excellent use of diaries, letters and newspaper articles(both allied and axis) to illustrate the true feelings of the soldiers who were mostly fed up with the bloodshed and slaughter and wanted to return home to their families.
What is really extraordinary is the fact that on quieter areas of the Western Front the truce went on until February and March of 1915. Also, there were Christmas truces in 1915 and 1916, but not on the same scale as in 1914.
Of course the truces has to end. Pressure from the general staff and politicians ensured this. Germany was not going to back down, and so men who has been friends for a short while returned to their duty of killing and defending their trenches.
Although truces have taken place subsequently, none have been anything like the 1914 truce. This is a facinating book, and well deserves a place on your bookshelf.