Here’s my offering in honor of Veteran’s Day, formerly Armistice Day, the anniversary of the armistice that ended World War I (famously signed on the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month, 1918…)
An excerpt from one of my favorites: Erich Maria Remarque’s classic WW I novel “All Quiet on the Western Front” – still one of the greatest antiwar statements ever:
I am young, I am twenty years old; yet I know nothing of life but despair, death, fear and fatuous superficiality cast over an abyss of sorrow. I see how peoples are set against another, and in silence, unknowingly, foolishly, obediently, innocently slay one another. I see that the keenest brains of the world invent weapons and words to make it more refined and enduring. And all men of my age, here and over there, throughout the whole world see these things; all my generation is experiencing these things with me. What would our fathers do if we suddenly stood up and came before them and proffered our account? What do they expect of us if a time ever comes when the war is over? Through the years our business has been killing; – it was our first calling in life. Our knowledge of life is limited to death. What will happen afterwards? And what shall come out of us?