EDITORIAL: D-Day sacrifices should stir concern today

Seventy-five years have passed since nearly 150,000 Allied troops landed on the beaches of Normandy. The D-Day assault was the beginning of the end of the horror inflicted on the world by the fascist regimes of Europe.

Casualties were high that day and reached more than 10,000 including 1,074 of the 14,000 Canadians who stormed the beaches on D-Day.

By the time the Battle of Normandy ended, more than 5,000 Canadians had died. By the end of the war, that number had risen to more than 45,000 Canadians and hundreds of millions worldwide.

But despite the horrific human toll of D-Day, the passage of time has unquestionably dulled the memory of the sacrifices of who died and has caused some to question the relevance of the date to our lives today.

There are few veterans still alive after all, who can speak to that struggle, or remind us of why it was important.

It’s a situation that should not be allowed to stand.

It was George Santayana who said that those who can’t remember the past are condemned to repeat it, and even a cursory glance at world events today should be enough to frighten us all.

Nazism did not arrive in Germany overnight. Nor did Mussolini’s rise in Italy.

They were the face of insidious ideologies and beliefs that had their fans even in North America.

In 1939 a Nazi rally filled Massey Hall in Toronto and, that same year, New York’s Madison Square Garden saw 20,000 attendees carrying placards with George Washington flanked by swastikas.

It wasn’t easy, but in North America, society fought back against those extremist views.

In Europe, they were not so lucky. Fascism was the eventual outcome of decades of unchecked populist movements and the embrace of a mix of nationalist fears, international grievance, racism, misogyny, and tyranny masquerading as extreme law and order – the same sort of beliefs being propagated today by leaders of countries that once fought against those same stains on our humanity.

Our commemoration of D-Day in today’s paper is, of course, our way of honouring those who sacrificed their lives for our freedoms. But it’s also a call for everyone to learn the history of struggle and why those men were willing to die to protect our freedom. And it’s a call to remain vigilant against those who would undo that sacrifice.



editor@sookenewsmirror.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Police watchdog looking for witnesses to arrests in Victoria’s inner harbour

One male left injured after arrests near Red Fish Blue Fish

Speaker ‘will not tolerate illegal activity’ on B.C. legislature grounds, says chief of staff

Chief of staff to the B.C. speaker Alan Mullen says situation with demonstrators appears ‘fluid’

City frustrated as truck lodged under bridge one week after Victoria installs new signage

Dozens of trucks and buses have hit the E&N Rail bridge on Hereward Road

Clothing, jewelry, purses: RCMP ask court about disposal of evidence in Robert Pickton case

Pickton was sentenced to life with no chance of parole for 25 years for the murders of six women

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of Feb. 25

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

Ryan nets hat trick in return as Senators beat Canucks 5-2

Ottawa winger received assistance for admitted alcohol problem

Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs meet with provincial, federal ministers

Neither party speaking on the groundwork laid for tomorrow’s talks

MPs to examine privacy implications of facial-recognition technology used by RCMP

The MPs will look at how the technology affects the privacy, security and safety of children

Dates back to 2009: Calgary police lay charges in fraud involving semi-trucks

Three people from Calgary are facing charges that include fraud over $5,000

Comox 442 Squadron carries out two sea rescue missions north of Vancouver Island

Submitted by Lt. Alexandra Hejduk Special to Black Press 442 Transport and… Continue reading

Most Read