Courtesy of Patrick, who points out all you need to know about these thoughts on Australia's unofficial national day.
"It says more than I ever could."
"The great sacrifices their generation made would be wasted if current and future Australians do not share an abhorrence of war, and forever work more towards its reasonable avoidance rather than its glorification. They would want us to reflect upon the human tragedy that World War I was not, as hoped for at the time, the "war to end all wars" - that young people are still called up as cannon fodder whenever politicians tire of resolving differences through diplomacy or have grandiose visions of national destiny."
That to me is the great dichotomy of ANZAC day. Being able to reflect on those who gave their lives in horrendous conditions to do what they thought was right for their country, sometimes at the behest of a jingoistic propaganda machine that wasn't entirely "accurate", and show appreciation to those that had the good fortune to return from service, while at the same time admonish war as the hateful, destructive and repugnant state of insanity and overt power-mongering it truly is.
This time last year I made the comment "I can't find any reason to justify war or the actions of those that actively seek it out." I hold to that comment, but find a year later that I have greater appreciation for those flung into combat by powers that exist beyond them. Lest we Forget.