Monday, November 11, 2013

BELGIUM ~Remembrance Day - In Flanders Fields 11/11~

Today, Remembrance Day is a public holiday in Belgium... A number of commemorative events are held in Ieper (Ypres) to mark the anniversary of Armistice Day on 11th November 1918.
From 1914 to 1918 the 'Westhoek', the western part the Province of West-Flanders, was the scene of the Great War.In August 2014 the world will mark the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of the First World War... Hundreds of thousands of soldiers of more than 20 nationalities fell in this conflict.

...I think Memorials like this are exceptionally important because the allow military leaders to remember the faults of our forefathers and let us learn from their mistakes in order to create hopefully a better world...

The Menin Gate/Menenpoort Ypres

Following the Menin Gate Memorial opening in 1927, the citizens of Ypres wanted to express their gratitude towards those who had given their lives for Belgium's freedom.
Every night at 20:00 hours (8.00pm) a moving ceremony takes place under the Menin Gate in Ieper - Ypres. The Last Post Ceremony has become part of the daily life in Ieper (Ypres) It has been going for almost every year since the First World War, except for a brief period during the German Occupation.

"In Flanders Fields", a poem penned by Canadian doctor, Major John McCrae at an advanced aid post at Essex Farm, near Ypres, in 1915. It was published in Pruch Magazine in December 1915 and inspired the use of the poppy as an enduring symbol of remembrance day. Mc Crae died with the rank of Lieutenant Colonel in January 1918 and is buried at Memeraux, France.

This is the largest Commonwealth war cemetery in the world. There are 11,976 war graves from WW1 here, including 8.961 from the United Kingdom. 1.368 from Australia, 1.025 from Canada, 520 from New Zealand, 90 from South Africa, 6 from Geuersney, 2 from British West Indies and 4 from Germany. Of these 8.366 or 70percent, are "Known unto God". At the rear cemetery is " Tyne Cot Memorial" which commemorates 34.887 men with no known graves of Britain (33.707), New Zealand (1.179) and Newfoundland (1).

Visiting Tyne Cot cemetery this summer...the size and scale of this really overwhelming countless crosses...row by row...such a sad view...should be visited by everyone, especially our world leaders...if only to learn from the mistakes of the past!!


  1. Beautiful post. Interesting that yesterday, the 11th, was also Veterans Day in the U.S. It is an official U.S. holiday that honors all who have served in military service.

    1. I think it is our duty to remember all the soldiers who gave their lives for our freedom...all over the world!