Wednesday, October 29, 2008

A scheme has been launched...

...for a national monument to honour the airmen of the Royal Air Force Bomber Command who died in World War 11 (reports in today's press).

There is a fine Royal Air Force Memorial, on the rising crest of the hill overlooking the Thames at Runnymede. My uncle, John Campbell, is among those who served and died with Bomber Command honoured there. The names are engraved in panels in cloisters of simplicity and beauty, and above them are the words of the Scriptures "If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the innermost parts of the sea... even there shall Thy right hand lead me..."

Rather than another monument, it would be a fine thing if the planned £2 million were to be spent on a Trust which would fund projects to pass on to the next generation a knowledge of the things for which these men gave their lives: our country's history, culture, traditions, and Christian faith, a love of true human freedom and the worth of each individual.

These thoughts are prompted by the viewing, yesterday evening of a classic wartime film, Mrs Miniver. It was created partly to emphasise to an American audience the sort of spirit and community life which an (idealised) England represented, and to show why British people felt it was something worth fighting for. It's a moving and tender story, and watching it now is rather heart-breaking.

1 comment:

James said...

Sorry... did you say World War 11?

I must have slept through a few...

In all seriousness, I am sure this scheme for a national monument is just another excuse to build a big hill on top of landfill and draw chalk swirls on it or something, anything, so long as it doesn't look beautiful, religious or.. horror of horrors... Christian.