Typical of the young boys who thought that the war would offer them adventure, and an escape from their humdrum lives at home, were Pvt. HW Hall sitting and Edward DL Hall from Ontario.
As we learned from Ross Campbell's letter, they are wearing pretty well everything they own, and are dressed as Ross would have been when he met his death.
The Hall brothers were lucky.
They survived their youthful indiscretion, in signing up for war as a way out of a boring existence, which young men have been wont to do since time began.
God gave them another chance, and they were able to leave the horrors of war, and many dead comrades behind, ground into the mud of France, to resume meaningful jobs on civvy street.
So many of these young boys - all civilians volunteers - died that Remembrance Day was begun, to honour the sacrifice of countless tens of thousands who downed tools - it was supposed to be for but a moment - and picked up arms to serve their country, and never came back.
In World War I, 66,000 Canadians were sacrificed.
We remember them on Remembrance Day, and their brothers, civilians all, who signed up again in World War II. 44,000 more lives lost in war.
Remembrance Day - remember it - was not started, and never intended in any way, to honour professional soldiers who fight for pay, glory, medals, and love of blood sports.
The People of Canada sought to honour, instead, the selfless devotion of the civilian volunteers who fought and died, and to remember their sacrifice, for they had not sought personal glory, or to make a career of war and blood sports, but stepped aside from their productive lives on civvy street to put their lives at risk for their fellow citizens.
How things have changed in the 21st century...
Canada is fighting a corporate and Bushite engineered race war in Afghanistan - foreign white guys are doing all the shooting; local non-white Muslims are doing all the dying - that the vast majority of Canadians - not to mention the overwhelming majority of white and non-white peoples around the globe - have always strongly opposed.
Today, the great Canadian Civilian Volunteer Armies of two World Wars are a thing of the past. Canada now has a small professional army of career soldiers - who join up hoping to find a lifetime chance at blood sports against other human beings.
They get their inspiration from top Canadian General Hillier "We are the Canadian Forces and our job is to be able to kill people," who openly recruited young men who like to "fight" and "kill" two words that define his stewardship of the NEW Canadian Forces of the 21st century.
They were sent to fight a war that has, all along, been strongly opposed by the people of Canada. Their combat deaths are a merely a professional hazard of those who seek out work that offers them blood sports for its own sake. It's a travesty to clump these occupational hazard fatalities in with those of civilian volunteer deaths of two world wars.
The deaths of professional soldiers, who die in a corporate war opposed by the vast majority of the citizenry, have no relationship, whatsoever, to the sacrifice of 100,000 Canadian civilian volunteers, the Finest Generations of two World Wars.
Associating them demeans the genuine sacrifice of those selfless volunteers who always held that war is an aberration and not a pursuit - General Hillier to the contrary - worthy of any man or woman.
Who you remember and honour on Remembrance Day is up to you...
|Great Canadian Heritage Treasure
|Pvt. HW Hall & Edward DL Hall - Canadian Expeditionary Force, WWI
|Orig. photo - Size - 8 x 13 cm
Found - Hamilton, ON
Unlike World War I and World War II, which were wholeheartedly supported by the majority of Canadians - making them democratic wars - the wars in both Iraq and Afghanistan were/are wholeheartedly opposed by the vast majority of the People of Canada.
A stunning reversal, to say the least, in the Canadian taste for wars against people in foreign lands, in the 21st century.
No matter. Backroom political party bagmen, and corporate cronies, colluded to send Canadian troops anyway, in effect turning the Canadian Forces into a mercenary corps serving the establishment classes of elite politicians, corporate conspirators, and Mainstream Media moguls seeking to ingratiate themselves with their Bushite American pals.
An extreme right wing government, which only got 37% of the vote, despite two outings at the polls, sent fighting troops to make war on Muslims in Afghanistan, a policy clearly opposed by the 62% of the votes, and a far higher percentage of Canadians.
So, in no sense of the word is the Canadian war in Afghanistan democratic.
But it's what passes for Democracy in Canada in the 21st century...
Now do you know why the Nations of the World
refused to vote for Canada for a seat at the Security Council
on Oct. 12, 2010?