Fifty-sixth installment from the diary of my great-grandfather’s sister Alise, written during the First World War. When the diary starts, she is living just a few miles from the front lines of the Eastern Front, and is then forced to flee with her husband and two young daughters to her family’s house near Limbaži as the war moves even closer. Her third child, a son, was born there in February 1916. The family has now relocated (again) to a home near Valmiera, and the Russian Revolution is in full swing. For more background, see here, and click on the tag “diary entries” to see all of the entries that I have posted.

If there is mention of a recognizable historical figure and event, I will provide a Wikipedia link so that you can read more about the events that Alise is describing.

January 16, 1918

The newspapers tell us that there are also socialist uprisings and huge demonstrations in Germany and Austria. The same news from other countries. Here, there is still a civil war. If one cannot play the role of hero – they fall. If one cannot survive the tortures put upon them – they fall. If one cannot hate one’s human brother – they fall. How unreal, how confusing life is! The “mean kulak” threatens you, your life, and your work gets destroyed. Love is dragged through the mud and does not recognize truth. Now so it is – foreign and cold people look at each other and see only enemies, not friends. That is how the days pass – an empty world, where people must hide from people, otherwise people will attack people. When will life awaken again? So much blood and suffering, so many burnt offerings, but so little peace.

WW1 Diary – January 16, 1918
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