Erich Maria Remarque (1898-1970) was a German writer who wrote the iconic war novel, All Quiet On The Western Front.
During World War I, Remarque (age 18) was conscripted into the army. He saw the horrors of the front that had such an impact on John Heartfield. Heartfield became a lifelong pacificist because of the slaughter he witnessed and the ignorance of it in civilian life.
“I imagined leave would be different from this. Indeed, it was different a year ago. It is I of course that has changed in the interval. There lies a gulf between that time and today. At that time I still knew nothing about war, we had been only in quiet sectors. But now I see that I have been crushed without knowing it. I find I do not belong here anymore, it [the narrator’s hometown] is a foreign world. Some of these people ask questions, some ask no questions, but one can see that they are quite confident they know all about it [the war]; they often say so with their air of comprehension, so there is no point in discussing it. They make up a picture of it for themselves.”