This is the milestone of 75 years since so-called D-Day landings at Normandy, when 150,000 soldiers – many of them young and untested – of various nations on the Allied side stormed the beaches of the north of France, then occupied and fortified by the Nazi German forces. The losses were heavy, with an estimated 5000-12,000 killed on the Allied side, while the Germans suffered 4000-9000 killed, wounded or missing, along with 200,000 taken prisoner. The scale boggles the imagination, and one must stand in awe of men wading ashore through relentless machine-gun fire, trying to manoeuvre with heavy packs and guns through sand, hoping against hope that they might just survive.
We should honour and pray for them all, the dead, and the ever-smaller band of survivors, and the cause for which they died.
Yet we should also remember how easy it is to lose freedom and virtue in a society. Many of the children of those soldiers were devotees of the sexual revolution in the sixties, and voted for Pierre Elliot Trudeau. Whether or not, as a rebellious, pacifistic, anti-war 23 year old, he drove around Quebec on a motorbike wearing a spiked, Prussian helmet and brandishing a swastika is up for some historical debate, but many of Trudeau’s principles were not far from those of the socialism adopted by the Germans and Russians. And the soldiers’ grandchildren, too many of them a coddled generation raised by an ever-more deviant nanny state, have now vested the same authority in his son Justin.
Both pere et fils and their sycophants have instantiated a Nazi-esque anti-life ethos in this nation, the state-funded execution of the unborn, the elderly, the sick, along with a relentless increase in state authority and intrusion – witness yesterday’s ‘debate’ on freedom of speech – that would have made those D-Day soldiers wonder what they were fighting and dying for, if it were all going to end in what we have in Canada, 75 years on, frittering away our fiercely fought freedoms, and tragically misusing what freedoms we still have. And it’s only going to get a lot worse, unless we turn things around, and soon.
So as we remember, let us continue their fight on for liberty, for justice and for truth, a war from which we can never rest easy, for which we too must be willing to suffer and even to die. Onward, Christian soldiers!