By Joe White
Veterans Day – A Day to Honor. A Day of Hope.
On 11/11 at 11:00 a.m. in 1918, the four years of horror and destruction that was World War I ended. And so, here we come again to another November 11, Veterans Day, to remember those who answered the call and those who have given their all for our collective welfare. On Veterans Day we honor all veterans for their courage and sacrifice from our many wars, thanks to General/President Dwight Eisenhower’s proclamation in 1954. Prior to that 1954 proclamation, Veterans Day was memorialized as Armistice Day, a day to primarily remember and honor the veterans from our first global war variously called, The Great War, The War To End All Wars, The First World War, World War I.
An inevitable fog enshrouds all war and its conduct. This fog of ignorance proves a very fertile ground for war’s inevitable misfortunes of suffering and destruction. World War I started in the summer of 1914 with all sides claiming the impossible, that each was fighting a defensive war. And, as always, Homo sapiens gathered and marched into yet another war whose true formthat summer was deeply enshrouded in war’s inevitable fog. The Austrian-Hungarian Empire unknowingly sowing the seeds of its own destruction, so also with the self-destruction of the Russian Empire, the Ottoman Empire and the German Empire. Apparently God did not favor the German Empire, contrary to the Kaiser’s claims in his speeches that God was on their side. God too works in mysterious ways, in his own fog. And the Brits thought the war would be over by Christmas 1914. So much fog. This year, 2014, we remembered the 100th anniversary of the start of the horrors that would be so vividly photographed and written about World War I, which finally left in its bloody wake 37 million casualties with 16 million deaths, including 7 million civilian fatalities.
This Tuesday, we remember the moment, 11:00 a.m., and the day, 11/11, that ended that horrific, industrial human slaughter in 1918. Never had so many human beings gathered for the purpose of killing each other. More British, French and Italian soldiers died in World War I than in World War II. Within its first month, over 10,000 fatalities and uncounted casualties. Genocides in both Serbia and Belgium were committed involving the hanging, bayonetting and mass executions of civilian men, women and children. Yes, the hanging and bayonetting of women and children. And by 1918, dozens of destroyed cities with the victors sowing vindictively the seeds for their next great conflagration of mayhem and death by the millions, the coming World War II.
However, within that next decade of 1918, a movement, started by ordinary people would bring a flicker of global hope. In 1928, still in the shocking shadow of World War I, over 60 nations joined in simply outlawing war as a means of conflict resolution. The new industrial war, reaching out and now killing masses of civilians, unlike wars of previous centuries, should no longer be used as a means of resolving our inevitable social conflicts. The Pact of Paris, a.k.a. the Kellogg-Briand Pact, was signed by the world’s major powers starting on August 27, 1928. People demanded a stop to the insanity of nations going to war and slaughtering each other, typically their youth. Now, today, it is the time to support our 2020 AYWW effort to get a proclamation before the United Nations General Assembly to recognize August 27 as Pact of Paris Day, the day the world outlawed war. Just come to the A Year Without War website or go to Change.org to sign our AYWW UN Pact of Paris Day petition. Let’s globally remember and celebrate the Pact of Paris every August 27 with parades and parties in all nations.
2020 A Year Without War urges everyone to pause for a few moments at 11:00 a.m. this November 11 to reflect upon the massive suffering that all wars bring and the loss of wealth that each war consumes. To remember and honor those who were asked and answered their country’s call to defend through courage and ultimate sacrifice. To remember that war is not inevitable. That war can be abolished as humanity came to formally abolish its centuries old practice of enslaving each other.
If you would like to see just one year without war on our planet, then YOU need to simply JOIN, RECRUIT, LIKE and SHARE 2020 A Year Without War at our website and throughout our social media –Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Instagram, Google+, You Tube, and LinkedIn. This is not the time to debate the feasibility of 2020 AYWW. That debate is for later. It is now time to simply give voice to as many of us as possible who want one year without war. Let’s get to one million followers and see how the world’s media and leaders start to deal with our growing global, social movement demanding 2020 be a year of global ceasefire. And in this march to 2020, let us never forget the courage and the sacrifice of the veterans, the victims and the witnesses of war. They have taught us, they call out to us, they cry out to us to stop the slaughter and waste of war. Their sacrifice demands that we, adults, start immediately to love our children, our future, more than we have learned, through the fog of our own histories, to hate each other. We can now voice our collective wisdom regarding the self-destruction that is war to finally thwart our war impulses. Let our wisdom support peace to bring abundance. 2020 A Year Without War is our 21st century’s first step to peace, to global abundance. JOIN now!!