During a pause on our path along the Gustav Line researchers shared with us photographs which highlighted both the futility and the human aspects of war. In this photograph (below) German and Allied combatants share cigarettes, conversation and pose for a photograph. On the back of the photograph it tells that this was taken during a pause requested by the Germans to retrieve their dead.
The numbers were so great that the Allies lent the Germans stretchers, which were duly returned to them at the end of the operation. Then, all this done in friendly and respectful fashion, both sides continued to shoot to kill.