Armistice Day Service

The Archbishop of Canterbury Dr Rowan Williams’ speech today at the Armistice Day Service was nothing short of very good.

View the service here: 11 November 2009 Armistice Day

Like most people I am sick to my heart of witnessing man’s suffering whether from the effects of war or malnutrition or cruelty.

But those who cry, and I include myself until recently, about ending the war in Afghanistan are crying from a selfish view point.

I have to say I am horrified by yet more bodies of soldiers being brought home for burial.  And I don’t want to see it anymore.  But am I being selfish and not seeing the wider picture?

If we end the war what has the soldier’s vocation, commitment and suffering been for?

If our folk do not choose to fight, we won’t have a defence force.

If we don’t have a defence force, we will be at the mercy of any maniac’s (or non-maniac’s) regime.

The question should be not why are our soldiers fighting the Taliban in Afghanistan but what will happen if no-one does?

Our men and women fight to protect our security.  If we don’t support them, where is our security?  What is the point of having a defence system?

I do not know what it is like to be the mother of a child, or the wife or relative of a person who has gone to fight.

I am sure that all the families of men and women who have gone to fight are extremely proud of their loved ones and I think that we as a nation should be too.  And that is what we should be thinking about when someone else dies because of the Taliban’s cruel regime.

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