This week has seen a number of significant and tragic anniversaries: 100 years ago on Monday,
declared war on ,
and World War One started. 70 years ago on Monday, a Jewish family hiding in Amsterdam were betrayed, and Anne Frank and her family were sent to concentration camps.
And 69 years ago on Wednesday and tomorrow, the Americans dropped atomic bombs
on Germany Hiroshima and . Nagasaki
It is now generally accepted that World War One was a senseless waste of human life. But many folk would argue that World War Two was justified, on the grounds that Hitler had to be stopped. However, like most wars, this too soon got out of hand, and both sides bombed civilians indiscriminately, culminating in the unprecedented horrors of
and . Nagasaki
There may not have been a World War since 1945, but there has never been World Peace. And of course horror is being piled upon horror in
, as I write this. And
the rest of the Gaza Middle East is also unquiet,
to say the very least. Not to mention Africa,
and other parts of the world. As a human race, we seem to have learned nothing
about living together in peace.
I believe that it is the responsibility of the living to make meaningful the sacrifices of the dead. Faith groups and others the world over are attempting to influence their government and fellow citizens to work towards a more peaceful happier world, in which war would no longer be necessary. We just all need to work together, and to keep at it, until humankind finally realises that peace is so much better than war, for everyone. There are so many ordinary people getting together, the world over, to work for peace and reconciliation. Let us hope that their voices are heard.
Most wars are allegedly fought to bring peace - a most ingenious paradox! We should remember the dead, but also pledge ourselves to make our world a better place - to end all wars, to relieve world debt, to feed the hungry, to find a cure for AIDS, to stop destroying our environment. It is still a beautiful planet, or it could be, if we could only learn to live together in peace.