Wednesday, November 14, 2012

German Green Fields

During this time of rememberance, one tends to forget that there were TWO sides to this conflict, and both sides lost far too much. 
     When I visited Ypres a few years ago, I was asked if I wanted to tour the German Cemetary.  Unlike the commonwealth cemetaries which are scattered all over the place, the German cemetary is so big that it stretches to the horizon.

After the kick in the heart I received when I toured TyneCot Cemetary and the Menin Gate, the idea of touring a cemetary five times as large was more than I could take.

Please listen to the German version of Eric Bogle's Classic "green fields of france", and remember, they were there too.

(and if you want to hear the DropKick Murpheys version, click here...)


Judy said...

This past week, I have been wondering whether/how the Germans celebrate Remembrance Day. As you say, they lost so many people, and not just military, but they also lost the Wars. How do they combine the two?
Both girls will be home in less than 2 weeks. I don't have a car any more and my house is now worse than Enid's ever was, but it would be great to see you.

stag said...

General Paulus was told not to withdraw from Stalingrad, because his political masters did not want to have to say to the population..."well, we have failed, and all those soldiers died for nothing." The result was a much greater loss of life as the inevitable Russian winter played out, and Stalin used the precious time the defenders of Stalingrad gave him to build an army which smashed Paulus's shivering, hungry army.
The political optics are clear...however from the point of view of the soldier on the ground there is no such thing as a "worthwhile war". It is ALL political, and there is always a
"butcher's bill". Which does not mean that war does not need to be waged from time to time...the political ends are perfectly good reason to go to war. Its just important to realize that the politican's agenda is not necessarily the soldier's agenda.