Foreign Policy Blogs

Its Glory Is All Moonshine


Though Memorial Day did not become federal law until the 20th century, per above document, its origins reside in the post-Civil War era.  Perhaps for this reason, the words of General William Tecumseh Sherman are with me today:

I confess, without shame, I am sick and tired of fighting—its glory is all moonshine; even success the most brilliant is over dead and mangled bodies, with the anguish and lamentations of distant families, appealing to me for sons, husbands and fathers … tis only those who have never heard a shot, never heard the shriek and groans of the wounded and lacerated … that cry aloud for more blood, more vengeance, more desolation.

Honor the troops, yes.  But also, as Howard Zinn advised us, honor those who fight against war.