In All Quiet in the Western Front, the protagonist and narrator, Paul Bäumer, hides in a shell hole between the trenches and is forced to kill a French soldier that stumbles in beside him during an attack. One full chapter is devoted to how this is his first hand-to-hand kill and the psychological ramifications of the act. However, in a previous chapter, Paul narrates an attack the Germans carry out on the French and how they "bayonet" some French machine gun operators. This contradiction puzzles me. Had he or had he not killed someone before in hand to hand combat? Is this perhaps a mistranslation from the original German to English or am I misinterpreting what the author is writing?

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