Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Remembrance Day

I like referring to this day as four 11s. I also like the way British refer to this day and symbolise it with red Poppies. Americans call it the Veterans day, but after all it's all about the same thing. It is about the end of the WWI, about remembering all those people who have willingly and sometimes unwillingly sacrificed their lives for their countries regardles on which side they fought.
I have been wondering what to write today, as this is not an easy subject to touch. The idea of war always scares me to death and just the thought that some boys barely the age of 14 entered that war by lying about their age horrifies me. I have read this book in French once. It was the letters of the French and German soldiers home. The thing that surprised me once, that what they wrote did not include the horrors of the war, in fact none of them ever mentioned. It is as if those men had this silent agreement not to say the horrible things and rather write about the usual mundane stuff and how much they missed their families.
I like the term Remembrance Day, because we all should remember and we all should be reminded, about the vast human sacrifice that was made in the first world war, about how it ended and how it changed the world and made it the place that it is today. We often forget the sacrifices that people we never even met make for us. The unseen and unnoticed, forgotten.
This poppy is to remind us all what we have lost in all our wars and what we are still losing every day. Try explaining to any mother, sister, daughter, wife that their beloved son, brother, father or husband died like a hero... Do you think it makes it any better, and how many women and men alike feel that everyday?

What is worse in this modern and almost civilized world we seem to even forget the ones that are alive. Thousands of veterans around the world live in poverty today. Is this how we say thank you to them? Do we only build statues, columns for the dead and forget the living. Can you imagine waking up one morning without legs, because you were at the wrong time in the wrong place. Who cares for those people? Who looks after them, who holds them at night when they wake up from their nightmares screaming. The evil of humanity that those people endure, should provide them with a good life at least afterwards, but no, we are even unable to say thank you then.

I would like you all to visit this website today or tomorrow and not only think about the dead but also about the living, who may sometimes wish they were dead. Please don't take this wrong, but I believe that sometimes living can be a lot harder than just dying on the spot. There is nothing worse than being forgotten, no matter how many medals you get for bravery, they don't fill the emptiness that war creates inside people's hearts.

Any war costs too much, any war is lost if it took place at all, but no matter what we always have to respect hose brave men and women who were willing to go there, for what they believed at the time was the right thing to do.

I received a lovely e-mail today from someone I never met, it made me think of my father, he earned captain's rank during the whole mess for independence in Lithuania and I never said thank you, thank you for willing to give up your life, so that my world will be a better place for me. I will do that now, it is never to late, but we have to say thank you to all of them, not just the ones we know.

I say thank you, to all of the heros dead and alive, that were and are ordinary men, because they did (and endured) extraordinary things.

1 comment:

Lorri said...

What a lovely post, and a beautiful tribute.

In the US, the veterans hand out poppy pins, and some hand out actual poppies.

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