Anke Neibig on rethinking the format of remembrance on the dayMy father and father-in-law were both in the army in the second world war, albeit fighting on different sides. It is that time of year again when I grit my teeth in preparation for the ubiquity of poppies across the UK (Lines of poetry in poppies aim to help appeal, 26 October). I used to regard John McCrae’s In Flanders Fields as quite moving until I stumbled across the third stanza. It urges its readers to “Take up [the] quarrel with the foe”, suggesting McCrae had not understood much about the tragedy of war. Arguably, the same is true for those who interpret any concern regarding the kitschy sentiments expressed on Armistice Day as a lack of patriotism, and therefore a bad thing. Let’s have a proper debate about the format of this day.
Newcastle upon Tyne
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