All Quiet on the Western Front

Justify the following statement: When one soldier dies, another soldier, indistinguishable from the first, comes along to take his place.

All Quiet on the Western Front

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When one is fighting an enemy, that enemy does not become anything except just that: an enemy. Therefore, the thousands of soldiers look different one from the other to the enemy against whom they are fighting. Throughout all of history, such anonymity has been the nature of war since a soldier is just a soldier.

From the point of view of warfare, this has some truth to it. War, especially WW1, was one massive point of blood and carnage. War, as a personification of the something quite sinister, does not distinguish between soldiers. Virgins with rifles and old men: they all come to die. All of these men become like a fog, forever lost on the battlefield.