It all happened on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month,” 1918, when the First World War hostilities formally ended, and the occasion got the flag of Remembrance Day.

World War1 began in 1914 and continued until 1918. Germany, Austria-Hungary, Bulgaria, and the Ottoman Empire (the Central Powers) fought against Great Britain, France, Russia, Italy, Romania, Japan, the United States, and Canada (the Allied Powers) during the conflict.

In the four years of the war, 16 million soldiers and civilians died.

Remembrance Day is the armistice day to mark the war’s end and remember and honour those who die in the line of duty.

For that reason, Remembrance Day is a sad day when human lives got sacrificed by the decisions and orders of the ruling elite of the combating nations.

On the battlefield, humanity gets divided as enemies. Human beings appear as marked targets. Those who get killed become martyrs, and the killers emerge as heroes.

When 16 million people died during WW1 as soldiers and civilians, imagine how many families faced devastation, how many children were orphaned, and how many women became widowed.

But that is least remembered. What is more significant is the essentiality of war.

It is staged with utmost fervour of nationalism and patriotism so that “by the sacrifices made by the courageous and brave, we live in the free world.”

Their sacrifices matter. But why war in the first place? Is it the leaders’ failure or their intentions that ignite a war?

The ruling leaders don’t get hurt or die on the battleground.

The soldiers die. Putin and Zelenskyy remain safe and secure in their presidential chateaus.

The First World War, the Second World War, and the ongoing wars on every continent cost trillions of dollars annually in military spending, with catastrophic consequences impacting every aspect of the planet earth.

When there are no more wars, nations dissolve their armies, factories manufacture deadly bombs, missiles, tanks, etc., and even the AK-47s get raised to the ground; that would be the signal for my Remembrance Day.

-Promod Puri

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