Monday, July 28, 2014

100 Years Later

Today marks the 100 year anniversary of the start of WWI, a 4 year war that was stopped by the outbreak of the Spanish Influenza. It was the first war to really use mechanized warfare (airplanes, automatic weapons, tanks, cars, and telephones). Of the 60 million European military personnel who were mobilized from 1914 to 1918: 8 million were killed, 7 million were permanently disabled, and 15 million were seriously injured. It was tragic in it's loss of life.

When I was in school, we never learned about WWI. The only reason I knew there was a WWI was because of WWII. So many of the reasons WWII started were because of retaliation over the aftermath of WWI. It's a little irritating to me that no one ever bothered to talk about the subject of WWI. 

Here are a few resources on the topic of WWI that I found interesting. 

1914-2014 Echoes of the great war:

Rilla of Ingleside by Lucy Maud Montgomery: Rilla of Ingleside is the only Canadian novel written from a woman's perspective about the First World War by a contemporary. This is my favorite book by L.M. Montgomery after Anne's House of Dreams. The reality of what was happening was truly shocking and while I cry every single time I read this book, I am glad that I did and look forward to reading it again.

Audio version (click on the picture)


Downton Abbey Season 2. This is very inspiring that a modern tv show is willing to tackle a piece of history. They spent the whole of season 2 from the war's beginnings to the outbreak of the Spanish Influenza.  

Sergeant York (1941) is one of my childhood favorites. I really enjoy the acting style of Gary Cooper who reminded me so much of my dad. While the film has the war in it it is more about the integrity of a devout Christian who was a conscientious objector. He was a medal of honor recipient too. How does a conscientious objector become a war hero? Sergeant York gave up neither his principles nor his honor. He saw the pain of war but didn't let it change who he was. He was a real hero.

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