Footballing soldiers

I remember hearing these various stories as I was growing up; about how (there are many variants of the story, but the message is always the same), during the great war (or WWII, some variants say); soldiers during christmas/winter, who were fighting each other on the trenches (or WWII equivalent).

The crux of the story goes something like; during exceptionally cold times, or shared religious holidays; they take time off of war to play football together, or share gifts and food. They play together of that one day, and then, on the next day, war resumes.

Those kinds of occaisions, be it, religious holiday, secular days, shared cultural events or anniversaries, or devastating tragedies; people come together to share in some kind of common humanity.

It reminds me of a bit in the film Children of Men; where the first child (Dylan) is born; and the war ends. Or, the bitter conflict of the Trojans and the Greek alliance. The death of Hector was to be respected (eventually) by both sides; by allowing the body to be dealt with in the proper fashion; with sufficient time for funerary celebrations.

There is something I am trying to articulate here, of some kind of human phenomenon or meeting of minds that occur in certain occiasions that crosss ideological boundaries, but I’m too inarticulate to point it out. Maybe someone else can….


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