To Kick off the Christmas Season, the Truce of 1914

By this time 100 years ago, the Western Front was the abattoir it would remain for another four years, and it had already claimed a million lives, the flower of the youth of Germany, France, and Britain. But history does record that imperfectly and spontaneously, here and there along the line, the opponents met, unarmed, in a spirit of the peace of the season.  Sometimes, British and German officers formalized a local truce; other times, frontline soldiers just decided to take a day off from shooting one another.

That is the factual basis of the Sainsbury’s ad, above; 3 minutes 41 seconds.

Here’s Sainsbury’s explanation of the history, heavily reliant on primary documents (diaries and letters) and historians to interpret them. This video runs 3 Minutes 18 seconds:

Sainsbury’s people are proud of their efforts on the ad:

Although the events we show in our ad are fictional, we’ve tried to make the details as accurate as possible. Everything from the insignia on the men’s uniform to the depth of the trenches is based on historical fact.

It seems like a lot of money to spend for an ad, but Sainsbury’s, a British chain, always goes all out; a couple years ago they made a 48-minute film of slices-of-British-Christmas-life with the help of Ridley Scott, which couldn’t have been cheap.

7 thoughts on “To Kick off the Christmas Season, the Truce of 1914

  1. Bill K

    One could wish that it’s a subtle way of challenging their Muslim population – “Have you guys ever done such a thing? If not, why not?

    1. Mark Matis

      Were they to actually do so, the entire British “Legal” system would descend upon them and beat them into submission. The UK Elite grovel before the Religion of Peace just as enthusiastically as do their West Pondia bruthas and sistas. Do note that “Religion of Peace” is a construct of Shrub II…

      1. AlanH

        Both in the City of London and in the investment world of the Bush family, foreign investment capital is of critical importance to thriving. It is a separate world unseen, for practical purposes, by the electorates or soldiers of either nation. The shear quantity of stable investment capital flowing from Middle East Oil kingdoms/emirates makes these vastly important. The investing class cannot and need not allow anti-Muslim sentiment (or thought) to prevail. Joe Everyman simply does see behind the curtain, and is thus nonplussed by the views of the leadership on Islam.

        This is the same conundrum that has Democrats running entirely on left-of-center social policy, while the actual significant actions of its Congressional delegation lay more, in almost any session in financial regulation and corporate benefits deals. So a Joe Biden can be seen by his voters as pro the working man, while Joe was known by the cognoscenti as “The Senator from MBNA.” Life.

  2. Pingback: Christmas, Western Front, 1914 | Western Rifle Shooters Association

  3. Suspect1

    Hats off to the “small people”, the ones who fight the wars, not the ones who start them. This is a piece of history that I have never heard told, but shines a light on the hidden path that a great many of us are searching for. The man in the trench, so very far from having the power to command armies, in all actuality has in him what it takes to stop the war. I know it is a bit of a naïve point of view, but many of the questions we spend hours pondering, have the most simple answers. The risk to ones safety, reputation, ego, wealth, family members etc. that it takes to implement the solution are why they are so often overlooked (being generous), ignored/avoided (the truth of it).

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