Imperial War Museum

The silence spreads. I talk and must talk.

H R Hoops' Destroy This Mad Brute, Imperial War Museum, Lambeth Road, Lambeth, SE1

So I speak to him and say to him: “Comrade, I did not want to kill you. If you jumped in here again, I would not do it, if you would be sensible too.

Print of Imperial War Museum, Lambeth Road, Lambeth, SE1

But you were only an idea to me before, an abstraction that lived in my mind and called forth its appropriate response. It was that abstraction I stabbed. But now, for the first time, I see you are a man like me.

Imperial War Museum, Lambeth Road, Lambeth, SE1

I thought of your hand-grenades, of your bayonet, of your rifle; now I see your wife and your face and our fellowship. Forgive me, comrade. We always see it too late.

Eat Less Bread by unknown artist, Imperial War Museum, Lambeth Road, Lambeth, SE1

Why do they never tell us that you are poor devils like us, that your mothers are just as anxious as ours, and that we have the same fear of death, and the same dying and the same agony — forgive me, comrade; how could you be my enemy?

From the screenplay of Lewis Milestone’s All Quiet on the Western Front (1930)

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