The original Memorial Day order

MEMORIAL DAY ORDER*

Headquarters Grand Army of the Republic,

Washington, D.C., May 5, 1868.

GENERAL ORDERS

No. 11

I. The 30th day of May, 1868 is designated for the purpose of strewing with flowers or otherwise decorating the graves of comrades who died in defense of their country during the late rebellion, and whose bodies now lie in almost every city, village, and hamlet churchyard in the land. In this observance no form or ceremony is prescribed, but posts and comrades will in their own way arrange such fitting services and testimonials of respect as circumstances may permit.

We are organized, comrades, as our regulations tell us, for the purpose, among other things, “of preserving and strengthening those kind and fraternal feelings which have bound together the soldiers, sailors and marines who united to suppress the late rebellion.” What can aid more to assure this result than by cherishing tenderly the memory of our heroic dead who made their breasts a barricade between our country and its foes? [Read more...]

How many Americans have died in combat?

At least 1, 340,000 Americans have died in our nation’s wars, from the Revolution through Afghanistan.  Michael Avramovich breaks down that number in a touching Memorial Day tribute. [Read more...]

War on terrorism updates

There have been several developments in the on going and possibly never ending war on terrorism:

After the jump, details of the raid into Syria.

[Read more...]

The new war in the Middle East

Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and the United Arab Emirates are bombing Iranian-backed rebels in Yemen.  Different Islamic nations are also battling each other in Libya, Syria, and Iraq.  Experts say this may herald an all-out Middle Eastern war.

This would be an all-Islamic conflict, with Sunnis fighting Shi’ites and different factions of Sunnis fighting each other.  There is no way Saudi Arabia, which claims authority over Sunni Islam, could countenance the ISIS Sunnis’ claim to have re-established the ancient caliphate.  Also, traditional rulers are fighting rebel movements, who want both politcial freedom and radical jihad.

This is not, strictly speaking, an American fight, though the United States is  supporting everyone fighting jihadist terrorists on both sides of the factions, which is resulting in all kinds of contradictions.  Thus, the U.S. is supporting Iranian-connected militants when they are fighting ISIS in Iraq, but opposing them when they are fighting moderate Arabs in Yemen. [Read more...]

Civil War photos online

The Library of Congress has acquired thousands of Civil War photographs and has put them online.  Here is a slide show sampling.  My favorites are from the Liljenquist Family collection of individual and family portraits., which the Library of Congress is making available freely, with no copyright restrictions.

These put a human face, literally, on history and on the Civil War, and I find them very moving.  (The custom was to have a picture taken in your uniform before you set off for war, knowing that you might never be coming back.  Some of the pictures of boys still in adolescence show a fierce bravado that is belied by their baby faces.  The pictures of the men with their wives and children show both courage and sadness.)  I post one after the jump.  (Notice the emotion in this formal pose in the way the husband and wife are holding onto each other’s hands.) [Read more...]

Persecuted Christians who fight back

Christians worldwide have been facing intense persecution.  But now some of them are fighting back.  Pakistani churches have been subject to periodic attacks for decades.  But last time that happened, when an attack on a worship service killed 14 and wounded 70, some 4,000 Christians staged a riot of their own, lynching two suspects.  Authorities are worried that Pakistan, already torn by conflicts between Sunni and Shi’ite Islamic militants, will descend into full-fledged religious war if the Christians get involved.

Some Iraqi Christians have organized a militia to fight ISIS.  In central Africa, Christian militias have been attacking Muslims whose militias have been attacking them.  Lebanon has long had a formidable Christian militia organization.  After the jump, an excerpt and a link about what is happening in Pakistan.

What do you think about this?  Should Christians facing persecution accept martyrdom or fight their persecutors?  Or does it depend on the situation, and, if so, what are the situations? [Read more...]


CLOSE | X

HIDE | X