This Christmas is one year after the centenary of the 1914 truce when soldiers in World War I stopped fighting, exchanged gifts, sang carols and played football in no-man’s land.
To mark a moment of peace over 100 years ago, former British Ambassador in Lebanon Tom Fletcher and German Ambassador Christian Clages, in collaboration with Lebanese soprano Tania Kassis, founder and president of One Lebanon, organized a mini football match at Notre Dame de Jamhour School.
Ambassadors, defense attaches and diplomats from the United Kingdom, Germany, France, Solvakia, Romania, Holland, Poland, Netherlands and Sweden representing “The Diplomatic” team played against Lebanese celebrities (artists, musicians, businessmen and sportsmen) from the “One Lebanon” team.
Enthusiastic and vibrant spectators from different sects and backgrounds supporting both teams represented a united Lebanon in a message that football then and now has the power to break down barriers, and to bring people together.
To mark this day Fletcher said: “We are remembering a moment a century ago when German and British soldiers stopped fighting and played football together. In a region convulsed by so much conflict, it is a reminder of the power of sport to expose our common humanity. By playing a match against the One Lebanon team, we are showing our confidence in Lebanon’s unity and resilience.”