"A French officer told about an outdoor service held just 150 feet from the German trenches"(61).
Signpost: Quoted Words
"'There was no planes overhead, no observation balloons, no bombs, no rifle fire, therefore no snipers, just an occasional lark. . . .'"(64).
"'In one area of the battle line, German soldiers noticed that a wooden board was being held up by British soldiers with the words MERRY CHRISTMAS written on it"'(66).
The author used this piece of information to show the readers that both armies were incredibly close to each other in the unsanitary trenches which makes the shootouts a whole lot more serious and deadly.
Word Gap: Clambering=Non Technical Term
"Lieutenant Colonel Charles McLean was making his daily tour of the trenches when he spotted some of his men clambering over the top and wandering toward the enemy"(69).
The author cited this sentence because he wanted the reader to understand that this was very unusual and that the soldiers felt like this day was very different than all the other days they had fought against each other.
The British are cold-hearted and shot German soldiers while they were singing!
If the soldiers had a fixed mindset, then they would have never came out of the trenches to celebrate Christmas peacefully and together on the battlefield that day.
Book Club Questions
Why do you think the British opened fire on the Germans?
I think clambering means to climb or move, and this word is a non-technical word. For example, "I clambered my way upstairs after a long days word."
The Germans wanted to stop the constant firing at the opponent in something they don't even want to fight on Christmas, but the British had other plans for them, so the British had squadrons that opened fire on the Germans while they were singing.
What effect do you think would have had on the war if the British had not opened fire on the Germans while they were singing on Christmas?