WMD: If you were in Keres' position during 1943, you too would be getting in the laughs before it all turned sour.
Reminds me of a scene in Alberto Moravia's novel Two Women:
"He was a man of about twenty-five, and of a beauty such as I have seldom seen in my life. He was tall, with broad shoulders and a slim waist almost like a woman's, graceful, and with long legs in yellow hide jack-boots. His hair was fair as gold, his eyes of a color between green and blue, almond-shaped, strange and rather dreamy, his nose straight, large and delicate, his lips red and well-cut; and when he smiled he showed very beautiful teeth, white and regular and a pleasure to look at.
"He told us he was not German but Russian, from some very distant country; he said the name but I cannot remember it. He said quietly that he had betrayed the Russians for the Germans because he did not care for the Russians; however he did not at all love the Germans either. He told us that he himself, together with other Russians who were also traitors, was attached to German headquarters for fatigue duties. He also said he was certain that the Germans would lose the war because they had disgusted the world with their cruelty and the whole world had turned against them. It was only a question of months, he said, before the Germans would be completely defeated, and then it would be all up with him, and at this point he made a gesture that froze my blood, putting his hand up to his neck, as much as to say that the Russians would cut his throat. He spoke calmly, as though his own fate were by now a matter of indifference, and he even smiled, not only with his mouth but with those strange, cerulean eyes which looked like two little pieces of the deepest part of the sea. It was clear that he hated the Germans and the Russians and even himself, and that death was of no consequence to him.
"He walked quietly along, holding the two horses by their bridles; and on that deserted road in the grey, frozen countryside there was nothing to be seen but him and his horses, and it seemed incredible that this very beautiful young man should be already condemned and should have to die soon, probably before the end of the year. At the fork in the road, where we parted, he said again: "These two horses are all that I have left in life and they're not even mine." Then he went off in the direction of the town.
"We watched him for a moment as he walked away, and I reflected that here was another effect of the war. If there had not been a war, this handsome young man would have stayed in his own country and would probably have got married and had a job and become a good, honest man like many others. The war had made him leave his country and had made him turn traitor, and now the war was going to kill him and he was already resigned to death and this, among so many terrible things, was perhaps the worst of all, for it was the least natural and the least comprehensible."