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Tomorrow we will be celebrating Veterans Day and, in my humble opinion, it is one of the most important holidays we have. It is steeped in patriotism, honor and recognition based on what was originally called “Armistice Day” by President Woodrow Wilson in 1919.
It began as a way to remember the day fighting ended in World War I – on the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month of 1918 – and to remember all the lives lost in that war. The name remained the same until 1954 when President Dwight Eisenhower renamed it Veterans Day – all because of efforts that began in Birmingham!
Remember “Armistice Day” was to recognize the veterans of World War I. Who knew then that there would unfortunately be a World War II? In 1947, a WWII Navy veteran named Raymond Weeks founded a group called National Veterans Day Volunteer Organization and started petitioning Congress to change the name to something that would be more inclusive to honor and remember ALL veterans.
In the meantime, Weeks was also working with Mark Ryan, president of the National Veterans Day parade foundation, and had started the first Veterans Day Parade in Birmingham. Last year was the 75th annual parade in Birmingham, and they usually have between 3,500 and 5,000 participants!
Raymond Weeks, who was recognized as “the father of Veterans Day,” was in every parade in Birmingham until his death in 1985 and had been awarded the Presidential Citizenship Medal by President Ronald Reagan in 1982. The state of Alabama has always been well represented in our armed forces so it’s very fitting that “Veterans Day” started here.
History is a strange thing because it increases daily. Yesterday’s news is now today’s history. There is no way to recognize all of history, but the most important parts do need to be studied. But it seems that our children are being taught less and less of the history of our country and our founding. Without that foundation it’s very difficult to understand how we got to where we are today.
History is also written by the conquerors and not the conquered – and we know there are two sides to every story. Really, there are three sides – your side, my side and the truth somewhere in the middle. No two people will see an occurrence in the same manner, so why do we present history from only one side?
As we are watching what is going on in our world today, it’s very obvious that the younger generations do not understand the history that brought us to current events. Many people seem to think the current war in the Middle East is over something as new as the 1940s. They don’t realize or understand that this conflict goes back to the beginning of time and will never be resolved until the end of time. Another reason the younger generations don’t understand the history is because they have never read the ULTIMATE history and genealogy book – The Bible. This goes back to the original “Hatfields and McCoys” family disagreement.
Wars are fought for many reasons – power, territory and religion seem to be the main ones. And those are at the center of what is now happening in Israel. It’s impossible to understand the root of the issues if you don’t understand the history of the three opposing religions that come to us from the division of Abraham’s sons – Isaac and Ishmael. These two were instrumental in the origins of the Christian, Judaism and Muslim religions who all claimed the areas of the Middle East as their homelands.
All of this is covered in the Old Testament of the Bible, and the conflicts go back centuries – and will always continue until Christ returns. If you are not acquainted with the Bible or the Quran it will be difficult for you to understand the history.
So that brings us to the current state of affairs that is the recurring argument over who is the rightful “owner” of the area now known as Israel. The Muslims call the land Palestine, and the Jews call it Israel, but the actual instigators are Muslim terrorists who hate the Jews and will not rest until they complete what Adolph Hitler started in World War II – the complete annihilation of all Jews from the face of the earth. Israel has now declared they will wipe these terrorists out, also. All of this has been predicted and is now coming to pass.
Unfortunately, the United States is being brought into this because some of the surrounding Muslim/Arab nations are supporting the terrorist organizations of Hamas and Hezbollah, and American military bases and support areas are being attacked. So far, our administration has not retaliated in a substantial way, but it will have to if any American soldiers are killed.
America is founded on the beliefs of Christian-Judea religious principles, and we must stand with our allies. Also unfortunately, we have too many people who have been allowed to come to our country who do not share our foundational beliefs. We are seeing their indoctrination of our young people on college and university campuses across the country and on the streets of many of our cities.
So, back to the reason for Veterans Day. Since our Revolutionary War to establish the United States of America, we have had millions of brave citizens who have served in our military to protect our great country from those who want to hurt us and/or the countries who have stood with us. Many gave their lives, many were injured, many were never the same, and many still struggle today. We owe it to all of them to remember their service and thank them for their service. We owe it to them to know their history.
Really, EVERY DAY should be VETERANS DAY.