And yet exactly one century later....
Armistice Day 2018 -- (The 11th Day of the 11th Month) -- The President didn’t show up....
In today’s early rain, American military forces prepared for the President’s visit, to a French cemetery, where lay row-by-row America’s never-aging Doughboys, while across Paris, others laid flowers, upon graves of a lost generation, slain by the War to End All Wars.
.... He chose lunch with Vladimir Putin....
America’s President scrubbed the 11 am ceremony, so as to not get wet in the rain.
Anyone in France in mid-November knows the weather, yet late at night, of November 10th, military leaders had only a train car to escape the rain while haggling how to bring an end to the war to end all wars, and hammer an Armistice.
When terms got signed at 6 am, messengers rushed through the November harsh weather, to deliver the order, that the guns stop at 11 am.
A century ago, the 10 o’clock hour was loud, as troops bragged they would fire “the last shot.”
.... The President blames the Secret Service....
One century ago, in the final minutes of the 10 o’clock hour came a nervous quiet, and when the Armistice took effect, the guns and cannons and airplanes and tanks stopped firing.
.... The President didn’t show up....
One century ago, at 11 am, on that 11th day, of that 11th month, The Great War ended. Troops erupted with cheers. Survivors limped from the mud of the trenches.
.... He didn’t want to inconvenience anyone with a traffic jam....
When President Woodrow Wilson convinced the Congress to enter “The Great War,” it was the Americans who turned the tide. By the arrival of the American Expeditionary Force, millions lay slain of weapons never imagined while other had barely survived being gassed. Tear streamed onto shallow graves, while Americans rose to the rank of a global power, which we’ve carried for a century since the Armistice.
Today -- exactly a century since Mr. Wilson delivered peace through the silence of guns -- America’s new President skipped a visit to a cemetery at 11 am, since he didn’t want to get wet before lunch with Vladimir Putin, just to deliver flowers to Doughboys.
.... He didn’t want to get wet....
Fallen Doughboys do not age, for songbirds pollinate poppies over still-shallow graves, but on this day, most notable is that a rich man choose a bouquet for his wife’s bedside table, and lunch with Mr. Putin, rather than bend in gratitude and lay a wreath for a lost generation.
The leaders of our allied nations stood in the rain, while the President of the United States brushed aside the unpleasant task of getting wet.
.... Forever, all shall know....
For it will be remembered... that marking the end of The Great War, one century after the guns fell silent, and etched like a mark of shame, in Paris France, on this day, at that time, the leader of the United States chose to NOT show up.
Maybe, after a trip on Air Force One..., in a luxurious hotel..., enjoying a fabulous meal..., perhaps only then did the President remember to give flowers... if only to his beautiful wife, before sitting warm and dry, to eat with Mr. Putin.
AND WHY DIDN’T HE SHOW UP?... What is more important then laying flowers at your own soldiers’ graves? Lunch with Vladimir Putin, who dragged the head of Turkey into the meeting. Why? When Russia invaded Ukraine, Mr. Putin’s navy gained a strategic path to the Mediterranean. If Mr. Putin roped in America’s leader, Russian warships may soon cross Turkey’s narrow passage. Russia can dominate the waters of Europe and beyond.
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