So many years ago
Doing the history this week, we became aware how far from reality we sometimes are. Doing 1914 and 1939 during the week when we are celebrating VE-Day’s 70th anniversary is a stark reminder of how peace is a precious gift that can disappear at a moment’s notice.
It’s hard to find in this newspaper’s archives hints that the world would know its bloodiest war in 1914. And a mere twenty years later, it’s the Royal visit to Sherbrooke that is on people’s minds. Mind you, The Stanstead Journal was the ‘Facebook of the day’ back then, so if someone was going to Sherbrooke to see His Majesty in June 1939 he was bound to have his trip chronicled in our pages.
5 years later, on the June 8th 1944 issue, there is no mention of the VE-Day, but an honour roll, listing the dead and those still serving issued by the Legion, who asked if relatives could supply the ranks of those listed.
That 2014 strangely resembled 1914 and 1939, with the invasion of smaller countries, internal meddling in the democratic process, so called internal ‘calls for help’, brings back a word long forgotten: Anschluss.
Canada is at the forefront of the resistance movement against the menacing views of Vladimir Putin. As a pundit explained, this has a lot less to do with purity of sentiment, something sorely lacking in President Harper’s government, but rather to the presence of literally hundreds of thousands of Canadians of Ukrainian descent.
There were not too many souls who believed that the world would go to war in the early summers of 1914 and 1939. You knew where your neighbor had gone or was going to, at which hospital he was treated and had no idea that, in a couple of months, hundreds would be called from the regions to serve King and Country, as it was called then.
Let’s hope that we have a nice summer and an even better fall.