On the radio at lunchtime I heard some smug scumbag declaring that it was time for Remembrance Day to move on: Next year will be sixty years since the end of WW II for goodness’ sake…

The first world war may well have been a series of monumental cock-ups by the allied Generals (in fact, there’s no “may have been” about it): The Second is, admittedly, along time ago and most of those who fought are no longer with us: But those of us who live in a free world must be made to remember that in war, people die: They suffer horrific injuries: those left at home lose loved ones. And of course, death in wartime didn’t end sixty years ago. Rosie Boycott (for the smug scumbag was she) said that “The tragedy of death in war is much smaller than it was”. Yes she did chums – amazing, isn’t it? There may be fewer such tragedies now, but each is as big a disaster to those affected by it as ever.

When I give to charities, I rarely wear their insignia, and if I buy a sticker on flag day it usually goes in my wallet rather than on my shirt. But I’m wearing my poppy proudly, and on Sunday I’ll take my place alongside veterans of many wars for the two minutes silence.

(EDIT: Just realised that this might give the wrong idea: I’m not an ex-seviceman and I have little right to stand alongside these men. I’m just ordinary me, humbled to tears at the sacrifices made by millions)

Those who forget the mistakes of the past are condemned to repeat them: Those who think that forgetting wars is a path to peace must not be allowed their way.

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