|Once Upon a Time: Our enemies were our allies and our allies are enemies. Amazing how Russia was twice the West's ally in two world wars. Poster from World War I.|
The Neccessary War : BBC Doc on World War I
It's been a hundred years since World War I, 69 years since the end of World War II and 25 years since the fall of the Berlin Wall. We are all still feeling the affects. Across Europe, the economic recession dare we say a depression is frustrated both the unemployed, retired and fed up youth. Belgium just witnessed a 3 day long protests by some 100,000 people representing workers, youth and unions clashing with the police in Brussels, the capital of the European Union.
Ukraine is still seeing its Eastern half being bombarded by its own government on the pretext that the Russian boogeymen are planning to invade Ukraine to back the Donestsk People's Republic rebels. The Ukrainian government has labeled the rebels as terrorists and Russia by extension as a revived Stalinist inspired dictatorship bent on redrawing the borders of Ukraine and neighboring countries. While Russian and Ukrainian governments go back and forth calling each other out before the world, ordinary Ukrainians are being bombed and hiding in basements and shelters built during World War II and reinforced in Cold War Era. Images from Ukraine and Russia and United States locking horns with each other makes it look like World War III is on the horizon. Meanwhile, Austrian and American soldiers are rushing off to join the Kurds against their fight with ISIS in Syria overriding earlier condemnation of ISIS for recruiting Western youth in their brutal war against the Kurds.
World War I in numbers
Remains of soldiers and artifacts from World War I are still being dug up in Belgium. Even 100 year old bombed left on the trenches in towns such as Ypres are still active. A few years ago an active bomb from World War II caused the evacuation of a German village. Both wars noted for their brutality and use of real Weapons of Mass Destruction from chemicals, aerial bombings, nuclear weapons, mustard gas, etc show how environmentally damaging and polluting wars can be. Even with the evidence, many countries still haven't learned from the consequences of the Great War or the War to end all wars as World War I was named. It was the same post World War I destruction, feelings of frustration and having your country knocked down to nothing and economic collapse that gave rise to fascists in Italy, Franco and his nationalist Republicans in Spain, the Young Turks in Turkey, Stalin's consolidation of power in Russia and of course Nazism in Germany.
Bloody History of Fascism
In the United States, war is harped as a valiant and noble fight for civilization and Democracy. Soldiers are celebrated as heroes of the highest honor. They are worshiped at every level of society even in schools and baseball and football games you will see selected soldiers or decorated veterans singing national anthem or an old patriotic song referencing America's beauty and greatness. There is nothing wrong with supporting the troops or saluting their sacrifices. However, the way the United States keeps jumping into new wars over the last decade, threatening to flex its military muscles at Russia, Syria, ISIS and rising regional powers has some Americans are questioning the frenzy of troop worship. Are the wars worth it? The Marines, Navy and military are advertising for new recruits on a near weekly bases on TV and online despite the end of American military occupation of Afghanistan and reshuffling troops to Syria and sending "advisers" to Iraq. It was the same advisers who eventually gave way to actual American troops landing in Vietnam in the early 1960s. Veterans from the Iraq and Afghanistan wars are returning home finding difficulty adjusting to civilian life and economic recession in the United States. Many are suffering with PTSD, physiological injuries and experiencing horrific nightmares. Many veterans of all ages have seek helped for their visible and invisible wounds. Few have turned to violent stand offs with the police, hostage taking and recently hopping the White House fence.
|WWI poster targeting kids|