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Remembrance Day

November 11, 2008

If the embedded video does not show please click: Verdun—Shell Shock.

Today at 11 a.m. I'll observe a moment of silent reflection about the sacrifices of all war veterans. It was a practice I was introduced to at my Australian school. (A moment of silence on the 11th  hour of the 11th day of the 11th month.)

As a member of the British Commonwealth during World War I Australia made huge sacrifices which still reverberate in that country. Haunting anti-war films like Breaker Morant and Gallipoli have come out of that culture. I encourage you to watch these films.

As a teenager I read Testament of Youth by Vera Brittain. I recommend this book. I also read the literature and biographies of her contemporaries, a destroyed generation. All portions of the population felt the war.

I still think it is important, not just today but every day, to remember the sacrifices soldiers make so that life can go on as usual for their fellow citizens.

Please take a moment today to think about all you have to be grateful for, and what the cost is.

Tell your political representatives that you want better benefits for soldiers and veterans. Tell them that you want those benefits to be easier to get, with less bureaucracy. Tell your representatives that this is a priority not just on Remembrance Day or Memorial Day in May, when they are posing for photo ops in front of tombs or down at the VFW with the few remaining D-day Vets—but on every day. 

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