Armistice Day 11 11 2011

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Armistice Day

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Purpose

Support of Veterans for Peace Chapter 72.

From their press release:

On the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month, it became “All quiet on the western front.” An armistice signed at six o’clock that morning took effect and brought a cease-fire to the “War to end all wars.” Since that fateful hour, most nations, which fought in that conflict, observe Armistice Day. The United States in 1938 made it official with a proclamation that states in part: “…it is fitting that the recurring anniversary of this date should be commemorated with thanksgiving and prayer and exercises designed to perpetuate peace through good will and mutual understanding between nations; and…inviting the people of the United States to observe the day in schools and churches, or other suitable places, with appropriate ceremonies of friendly relations with all other peoples.”

Unfortunately the horrors of World War One were to be outdone by those of World War Two and to honor the sacrifices of the veterans who fought in it, Armistice Day was changed to Veterans Day in 1954. While it is fitting and proper to honor all veterans for their service, it is a shame that the original intent of November eleventh has become lost to the militarization and commercialization of this important date.

Veterans For Peace chapter 72 will be gathering at the Pioneer Courthouse Square for our seventh annual commemoration of this solemn day. We invite the public to join us “with thanksgiving and prayer and exercises designed to perpetuate peace through good will and mutual understanding between nations;…”.

For more information contact:

Grant E. Remington
President Veterans For Peace 72
503-754-3313
grant@vfpchapter72.org



Other details
It’s hard to imagine that World War I involved 35 countries. It lasted five years, from 1914 to 1918. The United States only fought from 1917 to 1918. A year was more than enough time, however, to claim too many lives, and people held tight to the notion that this was the very last war. When the fighting stopped, leaders of several countries signed an Armistice on the 11th hour, of the 11th day, of the 11th month. An Armistice is an agreement to stop all fighting, in other words a truce. This truce was signed on November 11th, 1918 at 11 A.M.

This day was set aside to reflect and remember the sacrifices men and women made during World War I in order to ensure peace. The first official celebration was on November 11th, 1919. Veterans who survived the war marched in parades and were hometown heroes. A Veteran is any soldier who has fought in a war. Ceremonies were held and speeches were made. World War I was called ‘the war to end all wars’ because everyone hoped there would never be another one.

It is important on this day to give thanks for times of peace, and to remember who’s protecting your rights every day.

This event has been endorsed by the unanimous consent of the General Assembly of Occupy Portland. The Occupy movement is pleased to be participating in this event to honor those men and women. As well as to remember the battle that we are all facing today and everyday until we win! There is no backing down! There will be no surrender!

Armistice Day vs. Veterans Day

As Kurt Vonnegut wrote in "Breakfast of Champions",

I will come to a time in my backwards trip when November eleventh, accidentally my birthday, was a sacred day called Armistice Day. When I was a boy, and when Dwayne Hoover was a boy, all the people of all the nations which had fought in the First World War were silent during the eleventh minute of the eleventh hour of Armistice Day, which was the eleventh day of the eleventh month.
It was during that minute in nineteen hundred and eighteen, that millions upon millions of human beings stopped butchering one another. I have talked to old men who were on battlefields during that minute. They have told me in one way or another that the sudden silence was the Voice of God. So we still have among us some men who can remember when God spoke clearly to mankind.
Armistice Day has become Veterans' Day. Armistice Day was sacred. Veterans' Day is not.
So I will throw Veterans' Day over my shoulder. Armistice Day I will keep. I don't want to throw away any sacred things