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Repost from November 11, 2001

Lest Ye Forget
Those who do not remember the past are doomed to repeat it.
--George Santayana

Hatbadge
My father's hatbadge

Basic
My father fresh out of basic training. He lied about his age to go fight. He's 15 in this photo. Think about it... what were you doing when you were 15?

My dad with his tank. These are in Italy. He's 16 or 17 in these.

His crewmates from the tank. The text at the top reads "Open Air Phil Scott. Killed Dec 1943".

The text reads "[Troop] 6. Wiped out Aug 19, 1942. Dieppe."

Comments

( 10 comments — Leave a comment )
seymour_glass
Nov. 11th, 2003 11:02 pm (UTC)
those are great pictures...you must be very proud of your father, he put his life on the line for his country and beliefs...my grandfather and greatgrandfather were in the service in the united kingdom...my greatgrandfather fought in the boer war...i was thinking today this is one of the few moments where our society honours our elders...their trials, tribulations and sacrifices for us...and with each passing year as more of the people who participated pass on that connection with the past diminishes...it is one tradition i hope we can keep alive...those immortal words "lest we forget"...and it is scary just how little of history our society chooses to remember...
uberbabe
Nov. 12th, 2003 01:07 am (UTC)
and it is scary just how little of history our society chooses to remember...

I remember when I was a kid, and that isn't so long ago. Every rememberance day we would sit in the gym and hear about war, the horrors of it, people did what they had to do for our freedom. Now it seems that we hear what it's doing for our economy; how it's going to affect filling up our SUV's. It's not about our freedom - hell, I don't know if anyone knows why we have Canadian troops in Afghanistan - fighting for farmers to make heroin to feed our downtown eastside, not that the Taliban was of any use for anything other than worm food - freeing up US troops to go fight in Iraq because of Operation Iraqi Liberation... I get lost trying to wrap my head around it.

It used to be that those that fought and died did so and we can see and quantify what they did - Hitler was really killing millions, there were armies invading countries; there were dictators that posed a real threat, they really did have weapons. The war of today seems like so much spilled blood. It's about PR reps and Headline news. Perhaps at the time they thought the same, is that a part of history that they forgot to mention?
mediavictim
Nov. 12th, 2003 01:34 am (UTC)
"Hitler was really killing millions, there were armies invading countries"

as was Saddam .. and he needed to be stopped.- and this is what the US war machine will tell you

But what I do beleive was the the Iraqi war need not have happened for that objective to be achieved. Shock and Awe was a Bush PR campaign .. and it totally worked on the 'merican
poeple.. they thought they NEEDED to go to war to defend America when all they really needed was one well placed sniper.


seymour_glass
Nov. 12th, 2003 07:00 am (UTC)
there were two very necessary wars last century...both were fought to stop an aggressor and defend liberty for a multitude of people...now the word freedom is intrinsically tied to the concept of capitalism and free markets...and we fight for the liberty of commodities...ironically enough george bush said yesterday that america is a peaceful nation who only enters war reluctantly...at one time it was true, though the reasoning could be questioned...the nazis started by liberating the german people of the sudetenland...now bush talks about democratizing the middle east...what a pompous ass...but it's dangerous when individuals start believing in their own propaganda...i think it's sad that a day that stands for something necessary and tangible and a memory which should be honoured is used to further the aims and spread the propaganda of the greedy...
uberbabe
Nov. 12th, 2003 07:28 am (UTC)
great point.
cheaza
Nov. 12th, 2003 01:38 am (UTC)
you look like your dad :o)

I have a picture of my grandpa right after he enlisted in his uniform and he looks like such a baby.
mediavictim
Nov. 12th, 2003 01:40 am (UTC)
My Grandfather went to war and served in the Pacific theater

I think the problem is that if any of OUR generation was called to war.. none of us would go .. becasue I am not certain we would know what we would be giving our lives for.

What exactly would we be defending? Our tax burden? our lying politicians? the houses we can't afford on land we would be unwelcome on?


I had thought of joining the military for
1) money
2) travel
3) health (training)
but when I look at where our troops are put - to ultimately serve our next door neibour, I also look at the freedoms I would give up ... not worth it.

sovietnimrod
Nov. 12th, 2003 12:56 pm (UTC)
My Old Man
Agreed. The only wars I would fight in is either a civil war or in some sort of partisan effort - essentially self-defense.

Truthfully, war is so darned technical now that I really can't image a draft occuring anymore. All the smart people are too smart to get involved with the military, and all the dumb people are too dumb to figure out basic tactics and high-tech equipment. Look at our automobile traffic - most people have enough problems driving a car, let alone some fancy-pants tank or aircraft.

* * *

My old man missed seeing action by less than a year. He ended up with 42 Marine Commando pulling garrison duty in Malta in the mid-to-late 1940s and posted on the HMS Ajax. In the 1950s he was on the Royal Barge - one of his responsiblities was evactuating to safety the crown jewels from the Tower of London in the event of a nuclear attack.

Up until he was 60, he was still liable to being called back to service even though he was by now a Canadian citizen. For curiousity sake, when we were in Britain in 1979, he tracked down where he was supposed to report (according to his discharge agreement papers) but the place had been turned into a shopping mall.

He followed the Falklands Liberation War of 1983 to some close extent - interestingly enough his old unit was the very first ashore during the landings.
seymour_glass
Nov. 12th, 2003 03:20 pm (UTC)
the only draught i support is beer...
don't be so sure about there being no draft...we may never have one...but it is looking like the states is gearing up for one...you forgot occupation forces, which aren't technical and require exhorbitant numbers of bodies...the states won't be able to fulfill their obligations with the current forces and reserves...i think a draft would be a turning point in popularity though...i don't think people would be too keen on the idea of being sent over themselves...they might support someone else volunteering for it, but i don't think they'll like being forced into it...
sovietnimrod
Nov. 12th, 2003 04:01 pm (UTC)
Re: the only draught i support is beer...
I think Vietnam and the various Portuguese colonial wars of the 1960s-70s prove the point that one can no longer fight a foreign war with conscripts. The damage on home morale far outweighs any sort of numerical superiority conscripts may or may not bring.

If I ever got drafted, the first thing I'd do is make it known plain and clear that I'd be happily surrendering at the first opportunity.
( 10 comments — Leave a comment )

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