Friday, November 11, 2011

It's Armistice Day

Today is 11-11-11. For out friends across the sea that's 11-11-11. On this day in 1918, an armistice between the Germany Empire and the Allied Powers ended hostilities on the Western Front. As Germany was the last of the Central Powers still fighting, this essentially ended the Great War. In many countries, today is a holiday. In the US, we call it Veteran's Day. In most countries, today is the day that they remember those who died in war. In the US, Memorial Day, under various names, was already set aside for that purpose and Armistice Day eventually evolved into a day to recognise the service of living veterans.

Something in the neighborhood of sixty five million people served in the combined militaries of all the countries invoved in World War One. Today, only two are alive. When they are gone, the great War will truely have passed into history. The only vet whose service can be verified by records is Florence Green, who served in the Women's Royal Air Force during the last months of the war. In the US we have Andy Rasch, who claims to have run away at age sixteen and joined the Navy when we entered the war. It would be churlish to deny his his moment, so let's raise a glass to Andy and Florence.

And let's see that our living veterans get a fair shake for their service.

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