“We live in the trenches out there. We fight. We try not to be killed, but sometimes we are. That's all.” Paul Bäumer, the main protagonist of the movie, “All Quiet on the Western Front.” Existence on this earth has turned out to be one of the worst decisions that human kind has ever grasped on. We take a glimpse of the world around us and see nothing but hatred, detestation and greed surrounding our human lives. The main factor for revulsion to be brought up is the power that leaders want to take hold of today and so they create a diversion, such as an example like the World War I and in this case, the rivalry between Germany and France. However, war isn’t about a battle being won through force or cupidity, to regain a land such as Alsace and Lorraine; but fighting for your country with your own right and having the respect being returned back to you with honor. The feelings of each individual that were involved in a war in explanatory but the stories should be shared with you and me. We as individuals have to make a global change to spread the message about our feelings about the name known as ‘war.’ Through this reflection, I wish to conduct and show you how the world reacts to war; how I and the others around me become aware of this blooming situation. Watching “All Quiet on the Western Front,” felt like a sword gushing into your body as when you eye the pain humans went through, you ask yourself WHY? War is a ‘kind of material’ that should not be used for forestage of power but instead to associate countries together to establish peace. We may not have been involved in the WWI but the words that popped into my mind were the feelings of being depressed, hated, confused, shocked and most of all bankrupted of confidence by my own country. War is a shameful factor that should be abolished immediately because innocent lives have been killed for no reason at all. Katczinsky quotes, “Mother of God, you take away lives. You take away our hope. Bring us back some light…” The officer named Katczinsky spoke his words while the French blazed their bombs from above. They crouched down to safety while his fellow men died and the staunched horses were killed. “When do they stop?” Paul asked while his officer tried to console him by patting him on the back and staring out into the wilderness because he didn’t know the answer to the question. The exuberance of youth on their faces, the daydreams of what they envisioned to be, and the assured attitudes they own will eventually betray them and deposit them into the inferno of hell that only knows two things on the battlefield -- life and death. The smiles and thoughts of glory will be erased from their faces at the first fatality they witness and, even then, they will deny it exists at all. Like cold, hard punches to the face, death will not be denied.
“Paul, you keep him safe, you keep him away from the French. You promised me!” Words from a mother who ultimately lost her son waved goodbye as the young soldiers boarded the train at 8:00 in the morning. Tears filled her eyes and question filled her mind. Why would her son want to be involved in such a battle? Young men from the age of 18 and above join the military as they believe that they could make a change for their own country; but on the other hand the conservative claim that most youth enlist due to patriotism and the desire to “serve one’s country” may be misleading. A good number of the soldiers may have been persuaded and convinced by the brutal propaganda posters, from peer pressure from their parents to ‘keep’ their name; or even earn a living to then send back to their family. Whatever the reason may be, their lives changed forever when they started to live in the environment of war. “We’ve been in the front for a year. We know this place well. We duck when the bomb explodes and we run toward our enemies. But the place we live our surrounded by rats who eat our rotten bread. They have evil faces, which bring us sadness....
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