Joe Carlebach: Today is VE Day

Cllr Joe Carlebach is the Chairman of the Hammersmith Conservative Association.

In the cut and thrust of the exciting General Election campaign we currently find ourselves in it is worth pausing for a few minutes to remember that today is Victory in Europe Day (VE Day).

Seventy two years ago today the streets, towns and cities up and down our nation were filled with cheering crowds all ecstatic by the news of the official surrender of Nazi Germany. As time passes and the numbers of those who lived and fought in this conflict dwindle through age, regrettably their sacrifice becomes blurred in the mist of time. While we continue to live in a world torn by conflict and we must understandably focus our interest on the here and now I would ask that on a few specific moments in time such as today, VE Day, we pause to remember. Remember the sacrifice made by our parents, grandparents and great grandparents in what was possibly the greatest conflict of all time between good and evil.

The Second World War was very much a conflict that was felt directly by many hard working ordinary people. It is estimated that approximately 67,000 civilians perished as a result of enemy action in the UK , with many hundreds of thousands loosing their homes and all their possessions. Approximately 383,700 members of our armed services were killed in action, making the ultimate sacrifice for their country. Many more hundreds of thousands of service men were wounded often suffering horrific fiscal and mental life changing injuries. Had they not made these sacrifices and had we not won, the world would be a very different and darker place today.

As we all continue to hit the campaign trail up and down the country working hard for what I for one hope will be a significant and historic Conservative victory on 8th June perhaps we can have a rare cross party moment, saluting our fallen and enjoying the wonderful and beautiful thing that has been bequeathed to us by this fading generation. Our freedom and our vibrant democracy.

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