Remembrance Day and Sunday is not a time to campaign for peace

From: Bernard Stonestreet, Beauharrow Road, St Leonards on Sea

Friday, 12th November 2021, 10:47 am
Poppies for remembrance

I wish to express my opinion about the ‘misunderstanding’ evident in the letter in last week’s columns, headed ‘Poppies both red and white’.

The poppy and Remembrance Day are nationally recognised as a symbols of reverence and respect for those from the community who served with HM and Commonwealth Forces during wars and conflict, paying the ultimate price with their lives. Not to recognise that inherent in the poppy as the symbol of remembrance, is a reason for ‘peace’.

Those who we remember, some our relatives, others our comrades, were defending, creating and helping to sustain peace. That is why they did what they did, for their friends, families and the nation! Whether involved in total war as in 1914-18 and 1939 – 45, or by preventing a civil war in Northern Ireland for three decades and more recently demonstrating clearly the role of the Armed Forces under direction of a democratic government, doing what others had the option not to do, in Afghanistan.

Since World War II, conflicts across the globe have threatened ‘peace’, readily accepted in this country and probably taken for granted by many. The men and women we remember also wanted and yearned for such peace and to return home. They demonstratively contributed and fought to support the values of our society and their sacrifice has provided a sustained peace on these shores since 1945.

There is no requirement to ‘blister’ a campaign onto this National Day of Remembrance, which is a treasured opportunity for everyone, particularly veterans of and serving members of HM Forces. A time to think of those we lost, remember them and thank them for what we now have – peace! The Kohima epitaph attributed to John Maxwell Edmunds, (1875 – 1958), says succinctly, how we know they felt. ‘When you go home, tell them and say, for your tomorrows, we gave our todays.’

There is no discredit in wanting to campaign for peace, at home and abroad, but kindly choose a more appropriate time and place for it, in the national calendar. Remembrance Day and Sunday is not that time or place.

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