Monday, March 21, 2011


I was watching the television show M.A.S.H. today. Awesome show, right? What made M.A.S.H. so awesome was the good balance of humour with the poignant thought provoking moments that show the human casualties of the war machine. It airs on the History channel and because I was writing a blog (and not watching television, I swear) when it ended, another program began that viewed and discussed newly discovered World War II footage. I don't usually watch that kind of program but for whatever reason it caught my eye and got me thinking about how much we are surrounded by war. We have a morbid fascination with it. We are obsessed with it. It's glorified and romanticized in movies and video games. It's in our history books and the current headlines.
We say we are thankful for what the Service men and women have done for us. But do any of us really have a true appreciation of what we are thankful for? I can't speak for anyone else, of course, but I have no true grasp of the realities of war. I can't even imagine it, not on any level.
I can't imagine the fear. The bravery. The will to survive. Following orders without question. What it takes to end a life. What is taken from you to see someone die.
I can't imagine being so far from everything and everyone I know. The stress. The worry. The unknown. The noise. The mud. The disease.
I've never seen carnage. I've never executed a true act of violence. I've never had someone's blood on my hands. I've never held a dying man in my arms. I've never killed.

Maybe that's why I'm really saying thank you. I'm not thankful because of the freedom that has been provided to me. I'm not thankful because I'm a Canadian and not some goose-stepping baby killer.
I'm thankful that those men and women had the courage to do all those things that I can't even imagine. To go places I will never be able to picture. To endure fear and pain that I will never feel. To kill the enemy that I will never know.
I may have to watch it on television but I will never have to live the true horrors of war.
And for that I am thankful.
For that must be what war is. The scariest, most unimaginable horror.


  1. Its tough to fathom that which is unfathomable. We fight to prevent others from having to do so, yet somewhere down the line we all forget that; and find ourselves fighting a new enemy, in a new place. Tomorrows enemy is our friend, and today's friend just might be tomorrows enemy.

    I would also like to thank those who are brave enough to put the politics of war aside, and put on our nations uniform on without fear or regret. It takes some truly strong people to do so, and everyone one of them are hero's.