Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Armistice Day, 90 Years On.....

I'm probably about to step into a shit storm with this one.

Ninety years on since Armistice and we've still learned nothing, we cling to the comfortable belief that peace comes through war. Bullshit, since when? We happily recite this pathetic old refrain because if we don't it means we must change the way in which we deal with each other.

Remember what they say about extinction: If a species fails to adapt and evolve, it becomes extinct. We're now closer to being the harbingers of our own demise than ever before, but like good little obedient sheep, we still buy into the belief that lasting peace can be achieved by annihilating each other.

Here's one simple question for you, and I'd like you to put some thought process into your answer: Who is likely to profit the most from war? I'm sure anyone reading this and choosing to comment will probably attempt to give me all sorts of examples of a "good and just" war, but it's just rhetoric. History has shown us that past wars could have been prevented before they began if the participants hadn't been so willing to let the first strike occur, as though they'd been lying in wait for an excuse.

Like I said, bullshit.

The Green Fields of France

Well, how do you do, Private William McBride,
Do you mind if I sit down here by your graveside?
And rest for awhile in the warm summer sun,
I've been walking all day, and I'm nearly done.
And I see by your gravestone you were only 19
When you joined the glorious fallen in 1916,
Well, I hope you died quick and I hope you died clean
Or, Willie McBride, was it slow and obscene?

Did they Beat the drum slowly, did the play the pipes lowly?
Did the rifles fir o'er you as they lowered you down?
Did the bugles sound The Last Post in chorus?
Did the pipes play the Flowers of the Forest?

And did you leave a wife or a sweetheart behind
In some loyal heart is your memory enshrined?
And, though you died back in 1916,
To that loyal heart are you forever 19?
Or are you a stranger without even a name,
Forever enshrined behind some glass pane,
In an old photograph, torn and tattered and stained,
And fading to yellow in a brown leather frame?

The sun's shining down on these green fields of France;
The warm wind blows gently, and the red poppies dance.
The trenches have vanished long under the plow;
No gas and no barbed wire, no guns firing now.
But here in this graveyard that's still No Man's Land
The countless white crosses in mute witness stand
To man's blind indifference to his fellow man.
And a whole generation who were butchered and damned.

And I can't help but wonder, no Willie McBride,
Do all those who lie here know why they died?
Did you really believe them when they told you "The Cause?"
Did you really believe that this war would end wars?
Well the suffering, the sorrow, the glory, the shame
The killing, the dying, it was all done in vain,
Oh Willie McBride, it all happened again,
And again, and again, and again, and again.


Colette Amelia said...

indeed! but it has become unpatriotic, sacriligious, and darn right rude and ungrateful if we don't wear a poppy,think anything different than supporting our troops, and marching to the beat of war drums.

fjb said...

Oh thank goodness! I thought I was the only one who dared take the road less traveled.

fjb said...

That's my video, by the way.