The Western Front in 1914
This chapter sets the scene for the Christmas truce by examining the letters British soldiers wrote home during the first winter of the war, which included forthright descriptions of the horrors of the trenches, the respect they had for the German soldiers, and occasional friendly relations with their enemies. Letters that were printed in the British newspapers containing this information conditioned the public to accept a reality about the front lines that deviated from the official reports. The frankness with which the British soldiers wrote home during this time anticipates how they would report the truce, and the way it would be received by the home front.
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