Friday, November 11, 2016
Remembrance Day/Veteran's Day/Armistice Day
On this date, November 11, 1918, an Armistice was signed that ended the Great War (World War I) between the Allied nations and the Central Powers. The agreement simply ended the hostilities (fighting) among the warring troops. The Treaty of Versailles, which was the document that concluded the war and established peace, was not signed until 1919. The United States never ratified that particular treaty although it did cease all wartime engagements against Germany, Austria-Hungary and the Ottoman Empire.
This is the reason that for much of the world, today is observed as Armistice Day in honor of the cessation of hostilities at the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month. Almost everywhere, memorial ceremonies are conducted at 11:00 a.m. In the United Kingdom and throughout the Commonwealth, today is known as Remembrance Day in honor of those who lost their lives in the service of both sovereign and country.
As the USA did not recognize but merely respected the signed armistice, this day is observed as Veteran's Day, recalling the efforts of all who served in the armed forces in this country.
The United Kingdom and British Empire, on the first anniversary of the Armistice, November 11, 1919, observed a universal ceremony commemorating the event as King George V led a wreath-laying service and the entire Empire observed a public moment of silence and reflection.
As many troops lost their lives in the horrific slaughter on the fields of northern France and Belgium, in a region known as Flanders, the poppy-flower was adopted as a symbol of remembrance and tribute. This tradition continues to this day.
Queen Elizabeth II (above) placing a wreath of poppies at the Cenotaph Memorial in London for Remembrance Day. President Obama (below) laying a wreath of flowers at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, Virginia.
In Flander's Fields
In Flander's fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.
We are the dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie,
In Flander's fields.
Take up our quarrel with the foe;
To you, with failing hands we throw
The torch, be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flander's fields.
Poem by John McCrae who was killed on the Western Front (Flander's Fields) in 1918 during World War I.
As we all pause to commemorate and honor all those who paid the ultimate sacrifice with their lives, let us not forget the men and women who are currently serving, or have served, in our armed forces today. Our freedoms rest on their commitment to protect and defend. Many thanks to you all!
Peace! Get naked. Enjoy!
Bare With Pride