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Monday, August 04, 2014 

World War One ... historical stupidity that seemed like a good idea at the time



I see that the Canadians are being brainwashed into thinking that World War One was a great and glorious moment in Canadian history. You are being told that Canadian soldiers died for Canada's 'freedom' during the First World War ... to 'protect and preserve our nation'. Nonsense!!!

Any one with even a fleeting knowledge of history will struggle with this interpretation of the pointless, meaningless conflict known as 'the First World War'.

Stop any citizen on the street and ask them what the reason for the First World War was ... and see if they know. Essentially, three Royal 'cousins' ... England's King George V - Germany's Kaiser Wilhelm II - Russia's Czar Nicholas II (all three were grandsons of Queen Victoria) ... had a royal 'family feud'.

Here is what triggered World War One:
-In June, 1914 Archduke Franz Ferdinand, heir to the Austro-Hungarian throne was assassinated by a Serb.
-The Austria-Hungarian Empire retaliated against the Kingdom of Serbia.
-The Russian Empire told Austria-Hungary to keep hands off Serbia.
-Austrian-Hungarian Empire said 'screw you' ... declared war on Russia.
-The German Empire joined with Austia-Hungary.
-England joined with Russia and France... Canada was automatically at war because Britain was in a state of war.
-All hell breaks loose ... 20 million people DIE.


In all of this, I am not sure how Canada was threatened as a nation. I am not sure why 67,000 Canadians died (4000 from Saskatchewan) in mud filled trenches in Europe. It seemed like a good idea at the time. In reality, it was an idiotic bloodbath.

Canada's victory in taking Vimy Ridge from the Germans was a moment of great pride for a young nation that found itself at war automatically because of it's almost colonial ties to Britain. Thirty-six hundred Canadians died at Vimy Ridge and almost 10,000 were wounded. Courage? Absolutely! Worth the sacrifice? In a conflict involving European royal families, corporate interests and imperial spoils ... I'd say no. Again, it seemed like a good idea at the time.

A century later, our government has been struggling to bring meaning and reason to the death of Canadian soldiers in the pointless war in Afghanistan. Our Conservative government  has a record of praising our troops while they are in uniform but promptly ditching responsibility for them when they arrive back in Canada as 'veterans'.

I do NOT doubt the courage of Canada's armed forces. I doubt only those who continue to propagandize the 'need' for armed conflict and the death of young men and women who get caught up in feelings of patriotism.

War is primitive. It is neanderthal. Shame on those, in the modern era, who jump to war as a first option, without any attempts at alternate resolution.



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