Where were all the Poppies?

Liz Simpson

Where have all the flowers gone?  Pete Seeger's classic song about the tragic loss of war seemed fitting this Remembrance weekend but for another reason.   The red flower of Flanders fields was a rare sight in the streets of this green and pleasant land.   The season of mists and mellow fruitfulness in past generations would see the poppy worn with pride and gratitude by the majority of Britons but this year

The Royal British Legion struggled to find people willing to give time to collect for our wonderful, war veterans.   How fortunate for us then that between 1939 and 1945 the men and women of this country gave their time more freely.   They gave their youth, many their health and millions their lives for the freedom of this island and its inhabitants.   They fought courageously against invasion by Nazi Germany.  

Of course, most had no choice.   They were conscripted.   They were not professional soldiers.   They were men and women - many little more than children.   It is truly shameful then to learn that  The Royal British Legion found it necessary to use the photograph of the young daughter and widow of a soldier who died in Iraq to generate interest in the annual Armistice collection.   Apparently, people today think that the First and Second World Wars are of no consequence to them.  

They belong to  the older generation, the elderly who have no place or importance in their lives.   It seems that children are not taught either in school or through contact with grandparents the true history of this land.   The Second World War was this country's finest hour when Britain stood alone and warded off what seemed to be the unstoppable Nazi invasion of Europe.  

How horrifying then to learn that some schools are actually  teaching children that Winston Churchill, Great Britain's Prime Minister during those turbulent years, was a war monger.   Truly we allow such lies  and propaganda to infiltrate the minds of young people at our peril.