The poem ‘In Flanders Fields’ by, John McCrae, was used to recruit people to war.
“Take up our quarrel with the foe :
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In flanders fields”
Yet choirs around the world still sing this song onDay.
The line quoted on the poster, If ye break faith with us who die, uses a gambler’s reasoning:
If we don’t commit more, then the loss we have already sustained will be meaningless.
War iconography, including remembrance ceremonies and symbols, serves this dubious purpose.
Have you noticed the practice by some Australian politicians at this time of year of wearing the red poppies on camera?
At the time McCrae wrote ‘In Flanders fields’ in the trenches, Australian Prime Ministertried to introduce conscription.
This was defeated at referendum by the Australian people (not once, but twice).
11 November 2012