All Quiet on the Western Front


Why doesn't Paul flee from his foxhole after he stabs the french soldier? How does the incident affect Paul? How do you interpret his comment afterward: "After all, war is war"?

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Paul cannot stand what he has done in the foxhole. Caught in the trench Paul is devastated about killing the French soldier. To Paul, this soldier is more a brother than an enemy. He has much more in common with this soldier he has killed than he does with even his family in Germany. It is just Paul's luck to be the one alive. In his despair, Paul vows to track down Gerard's family after the war and try to make amends. His comment "After all, war is war" is simply a way to justify what he did; he, however, doesn't really feel this way.