Hey everyone. Today is Remembrance Day. A day when we remember those who gave the ultimate sacrifice in two world wars and numerous conflicts since including the Falklands, Bosnia Kosovo, Afghanistan and two wars in Iraq.
Whether or not we think those wars were justified or illegal is a matter for individual conscience but whether I agree with the politics of the Government who sent them to war I will always support the armed forces.
Both my grandfathers, my father and most of my uncles were called up to for national service and did their bit crown and country even though not all were supporters of the monarchy. It was just something young men in their generations and that is something I will never disrespect.
Nor will I disrespect the courage and bravery of my good friends and fellow poets Jim Craig and Sean McBride both of whom did 12 years in the armed forces and have written some brilliantly powerful and thought provoking anti-war poetry. As both of them have said to me on a number of occasions there is no soldier who actually wants to go to war. Both these men and so many others
deserve our respect and unlike the leaders
who sent them to battle are worth so much more than two minutes of our time.
However all of those mentioned in this post have one thing in common they were the lucky enough to come back home to the family and friends who loved them. So before indulging yourselves in a war of words over the rights and wrongs of wearing the poppy and discussing whether or not this glorifies war, I hope you spared two minutes of your time and remember them and the ones who did not return.
It is the traditional way of introducing the service with the words
At the going down of the Sun and in the morning we will remember them. I just hope we remember them all.