Stories, thoughts, observations, rants and dribble. Just another of my attempts to keep the interested people informed ...

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

From the uttermost ends of the earth ...

It is Anzac Day today.  The day Australians and New Zealanders commemorate the disastrous Gallipoli campaigns of World War I, as well as remembering our veterans from every war. 
I am glad to be in Turkey.  I am glad to feel the welcome that the Turkish people extend to all foreigners, but especially Aussies and Kiwis.  I am glad to be able to remember Çannakale in private, hundreds of kilometres away from the crowd of tens of thousands at North Beach. 
For all the pointless carnage that the Gallipoli campaigns wrought, I am grateful that they produced the only battleground in which both sides come together to remember their losses, and the losses suffered by the other side.  Where soldiers respected each other as people, not just as enemies.
Of course this is much better expressed by a hero:
"Those heroes that shed their blood
and lost their lives ...
You are now lying in the soil of a friendly country.
Therefore rest in peace.
There is no difference between the Johnnies
and the Mehmets to us where they lie side by side
here in this country of ours ...
You, the mothers,
who sent their sons from far away countries
wipe away your tears;
your sons are now lying in our bosom
and are in peace.
After having lost their lives on this land they have
become our sons as well."

1 comment:

Wendebular said...

I don't usually make a point of including quotes on here, but this one is perfect, and it still chokes me up.