British veterans for peace

This video from Britain says about itself:

8 October 2014

on remembrance day
when the army prays
and the flags go up
to remind us that they do it for us

on remembrance day
by the flower display
where the Church explains
how the heroes keep the villains away

there I’ll
tell it to the careless wind
there I’ll
tell you when the good guys win

on remembrance day
I should stay away
from the BBC

where they tell you what a real man should be

and the children watch
as the vicar walks around with a cross
‘cos to love is fine
if you do it at a sensible time
there I’ll
tell it to the careless wind

yes I’ll
tell it to the careless wind
yeah I’ll
tell you when the good guys win
yes I’ll
save it for the next of kin

on remembrance day
on remembrance day
on remembrance day.

Last year I took my kids to Remembrance day church parade. I was struck by how the balance seem to have shifted from remembering the dead to celebrating their heroism. The poppy was like a red blanket thrown across all conflicts since 1914 many of which were opposed by a majority of British citizens. I was in a church unable to stand separate from the state because the Church of England is part of the state.

Anyway, when I got home I wrote this song, I hope it is critical without being condemnatory. It has been picked up by the Christian think tank Ekklesia to promote the white poppy and will be performed for Veterans for Peace as part on remembrance day this year.

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By Will Stone in Britain:

Peace campaign veterans remember all war dead

Monday 10th November 2014

War veterans campaigning for peace held a sombre vigil at London’s Cenotaph for Remembrance Sunday yesterday, marching under the banner “Never again.”

As millions across the country joined Establishment figures to pay tribute to the war dead, the Veterans for Peace UK (VFP) group — which includes former Afghanistan serviceman and anti-war campaigner Joe Glenton — marked its own ceremony outside the memorial in Whitehall.

The afternoon ceremony was held “to remember all of those killed in war including civilians and enemy soldiers.”

Joined by supporters, VFP members faced the war memorial to sing Where Have All The Flowers Gone and read the poem The Cenotaph.

A wreath containing 90 per cent white poppies and 10 per cent red, to highlight the huge proportion of civilians killed in modern warfare, was also laid.

VFP members all wore hoodies, dark clothing and black ties. Supporters were advised to wear clothes “as if you were attending a funeral.”

A one-minute silence was observed before a reveille was sounded to mark the end of the ceremony.

Mr Glenton, who was jailed for absconding from military service in 2007, said he joined VFP to “counter the institution of war and to lead the way towards better alternatives to it.”

Falklands war veteran and VFP member Gus Hales, from Nuneaton, said: “War is always based on a lie and those that start them never fight in them.”

Earlier the Queen laid the first wreath at the Cenotaph after the nation marked two minutes’ silence at 11am. Thousands gathered at the Tower of London to see the installation of ceramic poppies.

Visiting the installation, Minouche Daniels, 54, said: “Seeing it makes me wish that there weren’t wars in the world. Coming from Lebanon I have a different perspective to all of it. I still wish that there weren’t deaths due to war.”

Russell Leach, 93, who helped build Mulberry harbours used by the Allies to bring cargo ashore during the Normandy landings in WWII, said of the installation: “Seeing it makes me feel sad. One wonders what it was all for. I think it is more questions than answers, really.”

This year’s Remembrance Sunday marked 100 years since the beginning of WWI, the 70th anniversary of the D-Day landings and the end of Britain’s 13-year military presence in Afghanistan.

7 thoughts on “British veterans for peace

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