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Heroes - or victims? You Say

WHAT did we remember on Remembrance Day? It is nearly 100 years since the beginning of World War I, during which my great grandfather was injured; but he wasn't a hero, he was a victim.

At this time, millions of ordinary people lived in poverty as the British and German governments largely served the interests of wealthy, powerful people.

Tensions increased as there was a greed for the wealth and power produced by dominating global markets. The British government, assisted by a jingoistic press, persuaded the British public that this was their war, and that to die in such a war was an honour that conferred hero status.

Thus, millions of ordinary young men from Britain and Germany butchered and maimed each other. Even when the war was over many were crippled in body and mind.

To make matters worse, the Treaty of Versailles imposed such harsh reparations on Germany that their economy was debilitated. This created fertile soil for the rise of Hitler.

On Remembrance Day we should remember that governments always want the public to see the war dead as heroes, as this distracts attention from the fact that they were really the victims of the greed and incompetence of the wealthy and powerful.

David Halford, Huyton
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Title Annotation:Letters
Publication:Liverpool Echo (Liverpool, England)
Date:Nov 18, 2013
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