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Remembering The WWI Christmas Truce 100 Years Later

A group of German soldiers with two Englishmen on Christmas Day in 1914.
A group of German soldiers with two Englishmen on Christmas Day in 1914.
Credit Imperial War Museum, United Kingdom: http://www.iwm.org.uk/collections/item/object/205022085?utm_source=iip&utm_medium=lnk&utm_campaign=insight

In 1914, around Christmas, British, German and French soldiers were fighting their first winter of World War I, when something unexpected happened along the Western Front. In many places, soldiers stopped shooting at each other. Some even met their enemy in the no man’s land between the trenches, sharing gifts and playing soccer.

That brief moment of piece in an otherwise bloody conflict has come to be known as the Christmas Truce. And, this December, people from the three European countries are celebrating its hundredth anniversary.

Here in Atlanta, British and Germans will be remembering the event with a soccer (or, if you prefer, football) match. British Consul General Jeremy Pilmore-Bedford and German Consul General Christoph Sander joined City Cafe host John Lemley in studio to talk about that and the lasting cultural significance of the truce.

The soccer match is happening this Saturday, Dec. 13, at Emory University’s Woodruff P.E. Center Field and is free to the public.