Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Remembering the dead this Armistice Day

Today is the 90th anniversary of the signing of the Armistice that ended the hostilities on the Western Front of the Great War. We remember the millions who died in the name of political posturing and bellicosity. We remember the arrogance of those who forced on the Germans those draconian terms in the Armistice that led to the rise of Hitler and German nationalism, culminating in the even worse slaughter of World War II.

Today, Armistice Day has morphed into Veterans Day, which, as Butler Shaffer points out, instead of being a day to remember the end of a terrible conflict, is now a day to celebrate the "virtues of the massive slaughter that only warfare can produce." Orwell would understand.

And as Bill Anderson points out, the powers that be didn't have to wait until the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month to stop the killing; in fact, that "cute" delay cost the lives of another 11,000 men.

We must never forget.

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