"We run, we throw, we shoot, we kill, we lie about, we are feeble, and spent.
A book of the tragedy of war expressed in sorrow by Erich Maria Remarque explains All Quiet on the Western Front to be neither an accusation nor a confession, and least of all an adventure. Throughout this novel many themes are expressed that of which all sum up to the major themes of the senselessness of war. Comradeship, wars brutality, and the lost generation, these themes express the book in its purest form, showing it from a soldier's perspective.
"We are at rest five miles behind the front." The importance of this line, the opening line of the book, is to notice that Paul is a first-person narrator, and the first word of the book is "We." This shows how Remarque wanted to display comradeship as such an importance. Being the only good thing to come out of the war comradeship takes a large place in the novel. Paul's closeness with his comrades begins to grow until he sees the enemy ads comrades with different uniforms. "Comrade, I did not want to kill you . But you were only an idea to me before, an abstraction that lived in my mind and called forth its appropriate response ." This was said after Paul killed Gerald Duval and realized he had a family and friends just like Paul. .
In Remarque's epigraph he states that it's dedicated to men destroyed by the war, this having two meanings to it, physically, and mentally. War brutality is highly expressed as Paul sees many of his friends die, and to many it doesn't touch them anymore. As he gets his leave its only misery and pain as he can .
never read books again or do any other favorite activity stating at the end of his leave simply, "I ought never to have come on leave." The death, pain, suffering, starvation, and countless other reasons back up the statement of how war is senseless.
The most important theme of the novel is the lost generation. A foreshadowing of this is when there group of 150 was drastically dropped to a remaining 32 survivors.