We call it Veteran's Day in this country, but around the world it is Remembrance Day.

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At the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month, we will remember.

We will remember rows and rows of brave men and boys who charged into a new kind of war, over trenches, facing machine guns that spat out lead faster and with less discrimination than ever before. War was thought of as a noble pastime before they began this fight. Its nobility died on French fields with so many others.

We will remember armies that hated one another by tradition and temperament coming together and forming alliances. The French and the English. The Democratic and the Communist. Always the human.

We will remember the men and women, girls and boys who took up arms when their country called, in every country around the world. Who went and fought and died for causes they could believe in and for no reason at all except that their leaders told them to go. We will remember their courage. We will remember their loyalty.

One day a year, let us take one moment of one day and just remember them.

Whether we name it for those we remember and call it Veterans or commemorate the act itself and call it Remembrance, this is the day we stop and remember.

It is eleven o'clock on the eleventh of November.

We remember.

3 Comments

Perhaps in the U.S. we call it Veterans' Day because, also having Memorial Day, we reserve this day for the appreciation of those who are still with us.

Armistice Day was created so that we would remember those who had died during World War One. However, as Paul said, we already had a day to remember our dead, Memorial Day. And by the time World War Two had come about, it was being used more as a remembrance of the sacrifices all servicemen made. By the early 1950s, it seemed reasonable to commemorate everyone who had served, no matter what the war, just as Memorial Day no longer celebrated the Union soldiers only. Thus, they changed the name to Veterans Day (no apostrophe).

Here in Poland, we call it Independence Day, for reasons that Google can probably reveal.

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