During the first winter of the war, after heavy fighting in the previous months, the front stabilized. A series of trenches and fortifications were built by both sides all along the front. During this time the French launched a series of attacks against German positions, attacks which would ultimately prove to be costly in terms of casualties and tactically indecisive. A curious anomaly happened in some sections of the front during Christmas: in some places a ceasefire went in effect, with British, French and German soldiers crossing into No Man's Land and exchanging greetings, food and cigarettes, even playing football.
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