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Author Topic: Remembrance Day 2018: 100th anniversary of the WWI armistice  (Read 371 times)

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Remembrance Day 2018: 100th anniversary of the WWI armistice
« on: November 11, 2018, 12:24:50 PM »

This year's Remembrance Day marks 100 years since the World War I armistice that ended fighting between the Allies and Germany. Did anyone attend any events this morning? We had one in downtown Kitchener and it was very well-done (though a little cold outside). They read the names of all the Kitchener soldiers who died in the war, had a marching band, bugle and bagpipes, read "In Flanders Field", and sung songs. It really makes you appreciate the sacrifices made for us (though I still can't truly comprehend what it would be like going to war).

I'm curious to hear what these ceremonies are like in the US.
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Re: Remembrance Day 2018: 100th anniversary of the WWI armistice
« Reply #1 on: November 11, 2018, 02:34:50 PM »

I'm curious to hear what these ceremonies are like in the US.
An ad for the military.


Remember the lives sacrificed to symbolism: http://www.historynet.com/world-war-i-wasted-lives-on-armistice-day.htm
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Re: Remembrance Day 2018: 100th anniversary of the WWI armistice
« Reply #2 on: November 11, 2018, 02:40:55 PM »

In the US, possibly in part at not joining until the final year of the war, WWI has never held anywhere near the space in our public conscience as WWII.
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Re: Remembrance Day 2018: 100th anniversary of the WWI armistice
« Reply #3 on: November 12, 2018, 05:24:22 PM »

This war affected Americans more than one might think.
Much was learned about war propaganda in that time.  Zimmerman Telegram aside, there was no direct, practical threat to the United States from Germany or the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Yet the country was whipped into a patriotic fervor so intense that violent mobs attacked those who spoke out against the war.

At the same time, the conscription of men from across the country genuinely introduced Americans to each other in an era where most people did not travel far from their homes.  Prior to 1917, there were few opportunities for everyday Americans on opposite sides of the country to interact, so as millions filtered through boot camp, they got to meet each other and trade culture.  The experience helped create a sense of national identity where previously, only a regional affiliation tended to exist.

This was an awful war that needlessly killed millions for nebulous reasons.  It redrew the world map.  It is a root cause of basically every armed conflict since.  It spread a disease outbreak that killed even more than the war.
We in 2018 would do well to understand how this war happened beyond the high school social studies treatment.  Understand it so we do not repeat it and so we recognize when we are sliding into the kinds of mentalities that unleashed this shitty war upon the world.  Yes remember the sacrifices, but for crying out loud, remember the terrible, terrible mistakes or those people will really have died in vain.
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Re: Remembrance Day 2018: 100th anniversary of the WWI armistice
« Reply #4 on: November 12, 2018, 05:44:52 PM »

In many ways, WWI created the modern world, the world we live in.

I was the guest speaker at a nearby church (not the church I attend). Before the main part of my sermon, in honor of the tradition of Armistice Day, I led the congregation in a moment of silence at 1100.
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Re: Remembrance Day 2018: 100th anniversary of the WWI armistice
« Reply #5 on: November 12, 2018, 05:47:21 PM »

I'm in Newburyport Choral Society, which is performing a piece meant to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the armistice. One choir per state is performing. Utah already has (and did well before November 11); Massachusetts is performing on December 8 and 9.
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Re: Remembrance Day 2018: 100th anniversary of the WWI armistice
« Reply #6 on: November 12, 2018, 06:22:33 PM »

It used to be that radio stations went silent for a minute at 11:00 am on November 11th.  That doesn't happen anymore.

Also, I didn't see anyone wearing a poppy around here.
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Re: Remembrance Day 2018: 100th anniversary of the WWI armistice
« Reply #7 on: November 12, 2018, 06:45:46 PM »

The Great War was one that the US should have avoided being in.  Had the European empires fought themselves into a state of exhaustion, the outcome would have been better than the Treaty Of Versailles gave the world, which was another world war and the Cold War.  A peace treaty among equally worn down empires would have been relatively equitable.

Rick
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Re: Remembrance Day 2018: 100th anniversary of the WWI armistice
« Reply #8 on: November 13, 2018, 03:38:07 AM »

I attended the service at the Cenotaph here on Sunday morning and a very good turn-out! Out of respect for the Veterans…..in my Province everything was closed for the day. No Sunday shopping this year. Even if it Remembrance Day fell during a weekday.....everything would still be closed. You wouldn’t find a Walmart or Sobeys open.

Something else that is very prevalent in Canada is wearing a Poppy. You will see many Canadians with one on. In the couple of weeks leading up to Remembrance Day…..turn on the TV news and I’m going to say just about every anchor will be wearing one.....and as they cut to a news story.....every politician will have one on too!
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Re: Remembrance Day 2018: 100th anniversary of the WWI armistice
« Reply #9 on: November 13, 2018, 09:43:55 AM »

Remember the lives sacrificed to symbolism: http://www.historynet.com/world-war-i-wasted-lives-on-armistice-day.htm
And don't forget the countless others, because Wilson wanted peace ASAP*, over peace long-term, and so we got "the peace to end all peace": https://www.wsj.com/articles/the-danger-of-rushing-into-peace-1541968382

That said, an unconditionally defeated Germany that had been Blitzkrieged all the way to Berlin in early 1919, could have made the French get expansionist again like they did 100 years before WW1 - for who could easily oppose the French military might then? After all, if they were a couple of days quicker than the Germans at invading Belgium to get to the other, the Brits would have opposed them (though unlikely not by war).

*Which was a key reason why he brought the US into WW1 - to break the mutually-destructive stalemate between the European powers, which finally happened August '18. The war suddenly became much more dangerous to be a soldier in as there wasn't the shelter of trenches that generally kept deaths in the 2-300 most days, but it wasn't 5000+ dying in a massive offensive with the result of the front moving just a few miles or not moving the few miles the other side aimed to gain as it was for the Somme, or Verdun - there was genuine offensive gains at the cost of about 12-1300 a day.

----

Anyway, like 2014 with it's moat with nearly a million poppies. The Tower of London had another thing in its moat. The lighting of 10,000 torches every day for a week. As the crowd was huge (and they stopped people not long after I got there, forcing them to wait - up to an hour and a half - to see the lit torches), it was hard to see it when you had tall people not realise they had short people behind them. This meant there was constant chatter about what was going on and the ability to see. It wasn't the eeyrie silence that was there 4 years before and felt a bit like watching something that other people were doing, more than being part of it.

Here's the bugler about to do the Last Post on the lower bit of that tower (OK, the picture is mostly crowd):


And here's 45 minutes later, once the torches were lit, some people had left and I could get a good view by moving forward where there was some steps so we could look down into the moat, but also look over people's heads (we didn't know it, but we were in the right place - right in front of the Beefeater)


Earlier we went to the Shrouds of the Somme - individually crafted wrapped mannequins laid out in the Olympic Park. This had the feel of the poppies in 1914 - one of quiet, still reflection at the sheer horror of the war, but with fewer numbers of both visitors and symbolic representations (not that I could get them all in - I'm missing the corners, and landscape I'm missing the back as well as smaller bits of the near corners - not that the back is clear on my portrait-orientated photo). Each one of these represents a British/Commonwealth soldier who died in the Battle of the Somme and whose body still lies in Picardy, having not been recovered. There's 72,396 of them - plenty enough to feel the futility of countless lives wasted in meat-grinder tactics (about the only remotely positive outcome from the million killed by the Battle of the Somme was British Generals learnt how not to kill as many men by their own ineptitude when attacking)


They also had a shrouded figure for every day of the war (1561 of them, plus two others for later and total deaths respectively), and the British/Commonwealth fatalities on that day adding up to the total 983,779 (744,000 Brits and Irish, 73,905 South Asians, 66,566 Canucks (inc Newfoundland), 62,149 Aussies, 18,166 Kiwis and 9,726 South Africans. Compare the USA's 116,516 despite coming in late and well after we learnt not to bombard our own troops). Here's NE2's bugbear: November '18

Numbers are 1st 1516, 2nd 1202, 3rd 1167, 4th 2649, 5th 1284, 6th 1463, 7th 1241, 8th 1096, 9th 946, 10th 921, 11th 861. There's some of October at the left of the picture, the figure for war-related losses from 12 Nov 18 - 31 Aug 21 (75,676) on its own to the right, and beyond that the final one with the total 983,779
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nexus73

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Re: Remembrance Day 2018: 100th anniversary of the WWI armistice
« Reply #10 on: November 13, 2018, 10:58:06 AM »

Given how many died in the Great War, the Spanish Flu pandemic killed even more.  One who was claimed was my maternal grandmother's mother, who died when that grandma was 5 years old.  It changed the course of history for our family.

Horton Foote did a movie about the pandemic as seen in the USA.  The title is "1918".

Rick
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