Armistice Day

English and French papers make headlines like The nation falls silent for 'the glorious dead'.

I think it is time to agree that the World War I is over. Germany paid the final part of war reparations a few weeks ago.

But what buggers me is that the dead are "glorious". How is it glorious to be dead? Some of those who died lived glorious lives, and even performed gloriously when they were killed, but many were, well, just killed. Very ungloriously. The polished pictures about war remembrance are hiding the ugly fact that in war, people kill and get killed. Sometimes it is justified and worth it, sometimes not. Very often, it's something in between. Just like any human activity, it has good sides and bad sides, but the side impacts of war are usually of a different magnitude than most other things.

And my view to the whole business war is that of Patton's:

Don't be a fool and die for your country. Let the other sonofabitch die for his.

Now that's not very glorious.

2 kommenttia:

  1. Glory - a state of high honor

    "The polished pictures about war remembrance are hiding the ugly fact that in war, people kill and get killed"

    The act of remembrance by an civilian individual is about the remembering that we sent them to kill and be killed.

  2. I don't really disagree about that so much. But for me the remembering is not "you guys are glorious for getting blown to smitherens"; it's more like "we're so sorry we had to send you guys there".

    For the record, my father spent well over three years (1941-1944) on the front, taking back what the Russians took from us (us being Finland), and then in the end having to pull back as the Axis was defeated.

    No regrets for having been on the losing side, though; I don't see there was any other option for keeping our freedom, and ultimately, we did prevail because we avoided occupation and we avoided being forced to communist rule.

    Yeah, the local Stalinists did ridicule our veterans some 30-40 years ago, but that is just their shame.