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Published: Thursday 31st of October 2013
Veterans Day is one of the public holidays in the United States. It is celebrated every year on November 11th in honor of army veterans who rendered their service in wars in which their country participated. Its observance dates back to World War One when the signing of a peace treaty in France put an end to atrocities between the conflicting powers. Symbolically, the armistice agreement got signed at 11am, on the 11th day of the 11th month of the year 1918. At the time when this day was established as a national holiday, its intent was to celebrate the end of all wars and the beginning of everlasting peace. Of course, in subsequent years this has proven to be an overly optimistic prediction, as several new wars had broken out since.
The timeline concerning this holiday was as follows:
Veterans Day is sometimes confused with Memorial Day which is observed on the last Monday in May to commemorate all those who gave their lives serving their country. Veterans Day, on the other hand, celebrates all those who had served no matter if they are dead or alive.
Serving one’s country in war is one of the most admirable things a person can do. It is a selfless act of personal sacrifice for a greater good. If it were not for the brave men and women who had put their own lives in danger to protect the freedom of their country and all its citizens, the world would have been a much less comfortable place to live. It took extreme courage and commitment to disregard one`s personal safety to save lives of thousands of others and to maintain the integrity as well as the freedom of America.
Commemorating the heroic efforts of these courageous men and women is the least we can do to repay them for their service. What members of armed forces had to endure during the long years of fighting on battlefields across the globe is beyond comprehension. They did it to protect the civilization against those who attempted to shatter it to pieces. Fighting for the right cause was the force that drove them forward and allowed them to persevere even when faced with an enemy that outnumbered them. Joining their European brothers in combat, the American troops contributed to world peace and should get their share of credit for it. The nation filled with thankfulness and appreciation for their heroism honors them by celebrating the Veterans Day and makes sure that neither they nor their heroic deeds are ever forgotten.
We ought to remember the day when bloodshed of the World War One came to an end with a heartful sense of pride and admiration for men and women who made that possible. This is how we acknowledge the greatness of the service these soldiers rendered to their country ensuring the rule of peace and mutual appreciation between various countries of the world. Although after World War One almost everyone hoped that a conflict of similar magnitude would never happen again, this was not possible. Already in 1939, another World War broke out calling for the bold men and women of the armed forces to step up again and defend their country against the enemy. They fought fearlessly on the ground, in the air, at sea, in countries far from their own, – all to bring lasting peace to the world and to ensure that their sacrifice was not fruitless. A lot of them died in faraway lands with their country in mind and the protection of its freedom as their only pursuit.
Today, in our busy lives, it gets harder and harder to find time to stop and reflect on the sacrifice made by the members of the armed forces who made it possible for our lives to continue in the way to which we are used. Ceasing all business for at least two minutes once a year, on November 11th and participating in commemorative services and military parades is our way of saying “thank you” to all military veterans without whose service our peaceful existence would be under peril.
The 11th of November is celebrated in other countries of the world, such as Great Britain, France, Canada, and Australia as Remembrance Day. We all observe a two-minute silence at 11 o’clock on the 11th November, the exact time and date when the bloodshed of the World War One was terminated. The event gave rise to economic and political development in countries that were victorious in this war, allowing them to rebuild their towns and heal the wounds, both physical and psychological inflicted upon them by the atrocities of a long-lasting war. Let us not forget the families of servicemen and servicewomen, those who suffered silently far from the eye of the public, and whose lives were changed forever by the acts of bravery their sons and daughters, mothers and fathers had made for their country and its freedom. For it is not just the loss of soldiers` lives that we mourn and honor but also the sacrifice made by their families who patriotically put their nations’ interest before their own.