All Quiet on the Western Front

What does the encounter with the french girls symbolize in the book? support with references

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They are interested in each other for the same reason boys and girls are interested in each other anywhere else. One of the themes of the novel is how much enemies have in common with each other during war time. Civilians and soldiers are merely pawns played by men in power. There is no malice between these German boys and these French girls. The natural attraction between the genders transcends the very artificial hate that has been fostered by the powers that be. The French girls come to symbolize the disconnect between what people are and what war tries to make people to be. Paul and his friends are enchanted by these girls even though they are supposed to be the "enemy". It is far more natural for them to be attracted by these girls than it is for them to hate the girls.