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Letter to my family

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LETTER TO MY FAMILY Dear mother and father and all I now take the pleasure in riteing you a few lines explaining what a typical day is like on the front line so I can express my feelings. To begin with, I will introduce you by writing our daily routine. In one month, each soldier spents four days in the front line, four days in the support line to pick up more rations and eight days "resting". These periods of "rest" are often taken up with army tasks such as fetching and carrying wood, wire and water to keep the trenches in good order, digging, filling the sandbags, replacing duckboards, strengthening the barbed wire defences or carrying ammunition. When we are holding front-line positions we have to be continually alert to the possibility of enemy attack. This situation is very frustrating for the soldiers who are alive because you feel very nervous since the uncertainty of disowning your destiny is very big. Wether you will survive or die that day, is something only God knows. However, the long periods of inactivity in the appalling trench conditions are also hard to endure. ...read more.


We use them to flew observation patrols over enemy lines in order to take thousands of aerial photograhs showing enemy positions by creating detailed maps. They act as the eyes of the army. The inhumane conditions in trenches are often made worse by bad weather. Despite the use of dackboards, heavy shelling coupled with rain or snow make the trenches muddy and waterlogged. It�s horrible! I can�t put up with it. The trenches are infected with lice and gigantic rats which have grown fat through feeding on the dead bodies in no man�s land and diseases like the "trenchfoot" spreads rapidly among the soldiers. It�s very easily transmitted but luckily I�ve yet not been affected by its consequences. To add to the general discomfort, army food is monotous- nothing like your cooking mum. Tinned bully beef is the usual. We are always hungry. Many times we only get one slice of bread, often with out butter or jam, for breakfast and hard biscuits for tea. These are so hard that you have to put them on a firm surface and smash them with a stone. Sometimes when drinking water doesn�t arrive, we have to boil rainwater from the shell holes. ...read more.


Although it sounds strange mum and dad, I can�t run away of this terrible conflict and avoid the unbearable conditions lived in trenches even though I�m longing for this to finish and being with my family which is the best. There are several reasons for my concerns which once you read them I�m sure you�ll understand my behaviour. Once enlisted, I�m subject to the strict codes of army discipline and punishments, including being shot for cowardice or mutiny. Believe it or not I don�t want to take that risk although you are above everything. Also I don�t want to leave my mates down. I�ve made really good friends here and the strong feeling of being all in it together has created deep bonds of fellowship, mutual support and loyalty. Finally although we have strict orders of killing the enemy, this doesn�t mean we hate each other. The mutual suffering means we share a kind of brotherhood and at times an unofficial system of �live and let live�exists whereby we are able to undertake our routines mostly ignored and undisturbed by the enemy. Remember that I love you. Give in my regards to my sister and everyone who�s worried of me. P/S: I will be back soon. Promise! The war won�t last too long. Louis Wilhelm ...read more.

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