Last Updated: Friday - 09/24/2010
Week of April 26, 1999
WCR Letters to the Editor
Milosevic, Hussein call for drastic radical actionI am a veteran of the Second World War, a veteran who was wounded while serving as a commander of a troop of reconnaissance tanks of the South Alberta regiment - the only armoured regiment to receive the Victoria Cross - in Europe.
Wounded like hundreds of thousands of other young soldiers, sailors and airmen, Canadian and Allied. Many hundreds of thousands of others were killed. All this carnage unnecessary.
We went into Europe to clean up a mess at a time when the enemy had tremendous defences, defences that our politicians and well-meaning, well-intentioned idealists, appeasers all, had permitted the enemy to build.
They were so devoted to peace that they could not understand that Hitler disdained negotiations, enjoyed bloodshed, including the shedding of German blood, and therefore preferred military conquest.
For eight years, Winston Churchill had sounded the tocsin regarding Hitler. Hitler himself in his manifesto Mein Kampf spelled out in precise detail his plans for Germany and Europe. In 1933, he built the first of many concentration camps.
Historical literature states if ever a man deserved retribution it was Neville Chamberlain. More than any other man, except Hitler - and Hitler could not have done it without him - he was responsible for transforming Germany into the most powerful military juggernaut in Europe.
Well-meaning politicians, appeasers all, devoted to peace could have defeated Hitler in 1938, had they confronted him when he invaded Czechoslovakia. German generals, Alfred Jodl and Fritz Erich von Manstein, at Nuremberg stated that Hitler had only 12 divisions.
France and Germany combined had more than 100 divisions. They had the power to destroy Hitler and prevent the slaughter of millions of innocent people in those concentration camps. The appeasers, the idealists, had the power but not the will to take the required drastic repugnant action.
"What experience and history teaches is this: that people and governments have never learned anything from history." - G.W.F. Hegel (1770-1831).
At present we have our well-meaning politicians and idealists, all devoted to peace and the negotiating table. Saddam Hussein and Slobodan Milosevic are the two exceptions to the above observation by Hegel.
They learned from and emulate Hitler. They have their agendas and adhere to them while our politicians talk and talk and talk. All the while, thousands of innocent people are being slaughtered.
As a veteran, I abhor war. I also abhor cancer. Having been diagnosed with malignant melanoma on my lower right leg, I was informed that unless immediate action was taken, the melanoma could metastasize and prove fatal.
Drastic radical action was required, however unpleasant or repugnant. This required my right leg be amputated below the knee. That was 10 years ago.
Had I not chosen this drastic action, repugnant and unpleasant as it was, I might not be alive today.
I liken Hussein and Milosevic to cancers in society. Talk will not prevent cancer from spreading. Drastic action can.
As I recall, even the good Lord gave up talking - if we are to believe the Bible (Exodus 12): "He slew the first born, human and animals, of the oppressors."
I pray that our well-meaning, well-intentioned idealists - many of whom have not experienced the actual horror of war or had a young soldier, mortally wounded, calling for his mother, dying in their arms, as I have - will have the fortitude to send in the ground troops now.
Then the young men who have to clean up the present mess may have better conditions in which to get the job done.
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