In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.
We are the Dead. Short day ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie,
In Flanders fields.
Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.
—John McCrae, In Flanders Fields (1915)
It’s Veterans Day here in the United States, Remembrance Day in the Commonwealth of Nations, and Armistice Day everywhere else. A day set aside around the world to reflect on the ending of World War I which ended on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918—one hundred years ago today.
World War I is a moment in history we should all consider, and its one we should not forget. The outcome and ramifications of that terrible mess of a war influenced so much of the following century. So, if you’re in the States thanking a veteran, take some time to pause and reflect on WW1 as well.
If you want to know more about the Great War. Here are a few places to start.
📖 Something to Read:
The Guns of August: The Outbreak of World War I
by Barbara W. Tuchman
My favorite nonfiction books tend to read like fiction, they tell engaging stories. Tuchman is that sort of historian, and she makes the early days of WW1 as riveting as it was tragic.
🎧 Something to Hear:
Hardcore History 50 — Blueprint for Armageddon I
by Dan Carlin
Carlin is a historian who does deep dives into moments in history on his podcast Hardcore History. I’ve been listening to him for years. He’s an invaluable resource and a dynamic storyteller. Very much worth a listen.
📺 Something to Watch:
Impossible Peace: The Time Between World Wars
by Michael Cove
This documentary series produced for the History Channel looks into the time between the wars—only twenty years separated the tragedy of WW1 from the violence of WW2, and Europe was in turmoil.
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