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Blog: Plant Your Dream!
by YourEnchantedGardener

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  • Plant Your Dream! by YourEnchantedGardener
    • D-Day Reflections by YourEnchantedGardener  16 y
      • Christmas Story, WWI   by  Liora Leah     16 y     718
        Subject:   Christmas Story, WWI
        Username:   Liora Leah     contact Liora Leah
        Date:   6/3/2005 8:43:11 PM   ( 16 y ago )
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        Liora Leah

        A couple of years ago, I heard this true story on the radio while in my car:
        During WWI, the German Army and the British army were facing off against each other in the fields of France. Each army had dug huge long trenches on either side of a "no man's land" inbetween the two armies. It was a stalemate, yet everyday for weeks the troops were ordered to shoot at each other. This was a risky business, because as soon as a man crawled out of his trench, and tried to make a run towards the other side with guns blazing, he was likely to be killed. No man's land was littered with bodies of both sides.

        As Christmas approached, the German's received thousands of miniature xmas trees to set up in their trenches, and thousands of boxed cigars from folks back home. The British received thousands of boxes of cigarettes (this was a hot commodity in war time, before anyone knew about the hazards of smoking)and chocolate bars from their families. On Christmas Eve, the British troops, hunkered down in their trenches, could hear the German's, hunkered down in their trenches, singing "Silent Night" in German. The British started to sing it in English. Some brave Englishmen crawled out of their trenches, crawled on their bellies through the no man's land, and crawled over to the German trenches to see what was going on--they saw that the German's were smoking their cigars and partying as best they could under the circumstances. Somehow or another the Germans saw the Brits and invited them over, sharing their cigars. The British shared their chocolates and cigarettes. The soldiers pulled out wallets and showed each other pictures of their families. The visiting went on all night.

        The next day, Christmas, the Brits came out of their trenches and the Germans came out of theirs. The two armies met in no-man's land. Each army retrieved the bodies of their dead comrades who were lying in the no-man's land from recent fighting, and buried them; this took most of the morning. In the afternoon, improbably, someone found a soccer ball. The two armies faced off against each other in the field, this time by playing soccer all afternoon.

        The next day, orders came from headquarters for the armies to resume fighting. To a man, the troops from both armies refused to fight each other. The men from both armies had to be sent home, because they continued to defy orders and would not take up arms against each other. Their "superiors" had to send in new men, who hadn't had the experience of seeing the "enemy" as human beings, just like them, in order to resume the fighting.

        Love, Liora Leah

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