Second World War

Discussion in 'News / Current Events' started by Jim1999, Sep 7, 2010.

  1. Jim1999

    Jim1999
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    To-day was the 70th anniversary of the London Blitz, and some 7 months of bombing London, England and primarily East London. We lost 40,000 people and many more injuries, plus the loss of homes and other buildings.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  2. annsni

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    How sad and how quickly we forget history.

    Remembering London today.
     
  3. abcgrad94

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    Jim, I have the utmost respect for those who endured that terrible time. I think most of us in my generation have no idea how awful it truly was because we've never known such heartache and devastation. We can learn much if we just study and appreciate history.
     
  4. Jim1999

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    ABC,

    It was a horrible time, I can tell you. We came up from the tube three times to find our home destroyed.....stiff upper lip, you know...

    Cheers, and bless,

    Jim
     
  5. Tom Butler

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    Jim,two years ago, my wife Janice and I went to London to visit with the family with whom she stayed for a while back in mid-80s. (Janice is an Anglophile of the first magnitude).

    We spent the week with the matriarch of that family in Southgate, whom she calls her "English mum." Each night, she would invite a neighbor in for conversation. One night, our guest was a neighbor who had lived through the blitz. She and Barbara, the "English mum," who also survived it, told us story after story.

    The next day, Janice and I toured the Tower of London,then walked across the Tower Bridge to an exhibit called London at War. Once inside the building, we rode a lift down to a basement, where a scene had been recreated of a shelter where people when when the bombing started. It had bunk beds lining the wall and other things which made a movie we watched come alive.

    Not only did it recreate the scene, but also the sound effects. As we walked around, suddenly the place began to shake violently, then WHOOMP, WHOOMP, we could hear the German planes and the bombs falling, seemingly right on the building. Although it was extremely realistic, we realized that nothing could compare to the real thing.

    In my mind, I could hear Winston Churchill, that old bulldog, standing in the House of Commons (June 4, 1940), as he said:

    We shall not flag nor fail. We shall go on to the end. We shall fight in France and on the seas and oceans; we shall fight with growing confidence and growing strength in the air. We shall defend our island whatever the cost may be; we shall fight on beaches, landing grounds, in fields, in streets and on the hills. We shall never surrender...

    I just listened to a recording of the entire speech.Churchill never raised his voice. I listened to the portion I quoted three times. Each time the crowning line is "we shall Nev-ah, Surren-dah."

    Twelve days later, Churchill, again before Commons, right after France had sought armistice, deliver the final line of this speech:

    Let us therefore brace ourselves to our duties, and so bear ourselves, that if the British Empire and its Commonwealth last for a thousand years, men will still say, This was their finest hour.

    Remember, this was mid-1940. The United States was still more than 20 months away from joining the conflict. England was alone. In many ways, it was their finest hour.

    As Janice and I stood outside Parliament, and later Buckingham Palace, and then 10 Downing Street, I was struck silent by what had happened in 1940 behinds those walls.
     
    #5 Tom Butler, Sep 7, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 7, 2010
  6. Jim1999

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    Tom, one interesting fact is that Canada actually declared war before England...it had to do with the time difference.

    Canada had front line troops in England in 1939. We had pilots coming from Canada and the USA, who took part in the defence of England. We didn't even have enough planes.

    You found out how deep the tube really is, compared to North American subways. They still weren't deep enough in our minds. Bunks? We slept on one blanket laid out on that platform and many didn't even have that.

    Then, up top, we had to live with unexploded bombs hidden under the roads. Chaps were driving every day over those bombs before they were discovered.

    Oh yes, we can tell stories about those years, but generally the more humour-filled stories.

    Cheers mate, and thank you,

    Jim
     
  7. Rippon

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    Just two weeks ago I assigned my more advanced students to give some famous speeches with passion. (Sometimes not the entire speech).

    Martin Luther King's "I have a Dream","The Gettysburg Address" and Churchill's, among others. They had to prepare an introductionary speech of their own about each original orator. I was touched.

    I liked your whole post Tom, but this just stood out.

    By the way,Richard Burton gave his unique rendering of Churchill's speech and added a little zest. It's somewhere on Youtube.
     
  8. ktn4eg

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    I've been an admirer of Sir Winston Churchill for years. Just reading his speeches sends chills up my spine. No doubt in my book that God placed him where He did "for such a time as this." (Esther 4:14)

    It's a shame that his advice regarding the Soviets was not taken seriously.
     
  9. Jim1999

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    Quote: It's a shame that his advice regarding the Soviets was not taken seriously.
    ----------------------------------------------

    It was taken seriously. We voted him out of office as soon as the war was over. We had had enough of war after 6 years!

    Cheers,

    Jim
     

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