image: November 11, 1918. Wikimedia commons (  link  ).

image: November 11, 1918. Wikimedia commons (link).

Here is a new article by peace activist and advocate, David Swanson, entitled "A New Armistice Day."

In it, he notes that the day later changed to "Veterans Day" in the united states was once called "Armistice Day" in commemoration of the cessation of armed conflict after what was then known as the "War to End all Wars."

The word "armistice" literally means a standstill or cessation of armed violence, and is etymologically related to the word "solstice," which means the standstill of the sun which occurs each year in June and December.

As David Swanson notes, when the elected representatives of the people declared November 11th to be observed as Armistice Day in the united states, they set the day aside to "perpetuate peace through good will and mutual understanding between nations."

Thus, he sees the change of the name of the observance from Armistice Day to "Veterans Day" as one fraught with ominous implications -- and certainly the day is no longer observed as a day "dedicated to the cause of world peace," as those bygone congressional representatives also hoped would be the purpose of this solemn day. 

Instead, the united states now perpetuates armed aggression on virtually every continent on our planet, without cessation (certainly without cessation since 2001). Congressional representatives even expressed surprise recently when they learned that four members of the army had been killed in Africa, some members of Congress professing that they didn't even know the united states had forces operating on that continent.

General Smedley Butler, in his famous treatise entitled "War is a Racket," argued that war should never be declared except by plebiscite in which only persons of fighting age could vote yes or no. He also argued that military planes should be limited by law to operations within 500 miles of the borders or coastlines, for defense purposes and not for wars of aggression. Military ships, he argued, should be limited to 200 miles. And the army or land forces should be prohibited from operations outside the borders of the country at all.

Both the text by General Butler, and the new article by David Swanson, might be good to read and ponder on this Armistice Day, November 11, 2017.