Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Armistice Day

I normally steer clear of politics here (which is why I haven't said anything about the US elections - not because I'm ignoring it, but my politics are not relevant to my writing).

However, I do make an exception for Armistice Day.

I was very moved this morning to hear 110-year-old Henry Allingham - one of the last four surviving servicement from the 5 million troops in the Great War - talking on the radio about his memories of wartime Yarmouth. Daughter was a bit shocked when I pointed out that he was 102 years older than she was, and when he was born Queen Victoria was on the throne.

It's because of people like Henry Allingham - and his friends and colleagues who didn't make it back - that we have freedom in this country.

But I really do wish the world would learn its lesson. The result of war is loss and grief. End of. And I don't mean Iraq. I mean conflict the world over.

If the money spent on arms was spent on agriculture and engineering and education and medical research, the world would be a much better place. What would happen, say, if all the arms manufacturers in the world said 'enough' and refused to make them - and turned their factories to a different sort of manufacturing? What would happen if people stopped trying to take maximum profits and took responsibility for their actions?

I hope that one day we'll find out.

And for that reason I'll be interrupting my guitar lesson this morning at 11 for 2 minutes' silence. To honour those who died believing that they were trying to give future generations a better life and a better chance.

5 comments:

Lori x said...

Well said Kate.

Lori x

Jan Jones said...

I agree, Kate (as you know having commented on the poem on my blog this morning)

Jill said...

Thank you for that lovely post.

Marilyn Shoemaker said...

A lovely post, Kate.

Kate Hardy said...

Thanks, all. I think Armistice Day should be a day of hope as well as a day of remembrance :o)