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Remembered Today:

BBC2 Passchendaele tomorrow


Steven Broomfield
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Sorry if this has been posted elsewhere (possibly some deep-seated survival instinct has blocked my eyes from seeing), but I noticed THIS EXTRAVAGANZA in the TV listings.

 

Looks ghastly - Dan Snow and Alfie Boe on the same programme! - but it might appeal to some tastes.

Edited by Steven Broomfield
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Joshing aside, I have been looking at the Order of Service for this evening's events: when did Remembrance move away from quiet contemplation and reflection into a three-hour bonanza of light entertainment? It looks utterly appalling.

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This does not bode well. I am afraid Steven they all seem to have got away from remembrance now and turn events into a jamboree.

 

Andy

Edited by stiletto_33853
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Why is it pretending to be live?

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Why is it pretending to be something worthy of remembrance?  Just listened to usual character press the PC button and I'm wondering just how ethically diverse the 190th (Wimbledon's Own) Brigade RFA, or the 9th East Surreys, or 23rd Middx, etc. etc. etc. were in 1917?  That not to say there weren't many nations on the Western Front, but I'd like some perspective.

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I've seen very little, thank the Lord. What I have seen is dreadful. 

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Managed to see a little this evening, after a little time I switched channels, not impressed.

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I thoroughly enjoyed the event, I thought it was very well done.

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Good to see this portion of todays Guardian online editorial has been thoroughly researched.......

 

 

"On Sunday European dignitaries and members of the Belgian and British royal families gathered in the Belgian frontline town of Mons to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the beginning of the mud-soaked tragedy of Passchendaele."

 

 

Steve Y

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I too thought it was well done. I am sure that lads left behind would have appreciated it. The event was reflective yet got over the essential horror of the issue.

 

Yet for all its horror it was an essential part of winning the war?

 

R

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I owe to Prof Peter Simkins the comment that these battles were akin to trying to climb out of a saucer, with Ypres as the cup and the Passchendaele Ridge as the rim of the saucer. The Allies needed to get to the rim in order to obtain observation over the German-held land beyond it, and to deny the Germans their observation of Ypres. In order to obtain any benefit at all from the battles, it was necessary to get all the way to the rim (the ridge), and anything short of that would be a failure.

 

As a preliminary, it was necessary to clear the Messines Ridge, which I liken to the teaspoon.

 

There is the further point that the British neededto keep the Germans as fully occupied as possible, in order to give the French more respite to recover after the failure of the Nivelle offensive and the subsequent mutinies. There was also the object of trying to free the Belgian coast and, in particular, the U-Boat pens there. Those who stigmatise these battles as "useless slaughter" usually fail to put them in a proper historical context.

 

Ron

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33 minutes ago, tullybrone said:

Good to see this portion of todays Guardian online editorial has been thoroughly researched.......

Steve Y

Priceless! Good old Grauniad.

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Well done - no religion!

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The Last Post ceremony at the Menin Gate was of course respectful and moving and - if anything - on this occasion it was more so than ever.  The 'event' in front of the Grand Hall was well-judged and I agree with the previous posters who felt the soldiers themselves would have enjoyed it.  The BBC got the coverage just right I think.

Edited by Tom Kilkenny
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I found the whole event very moving, meaningful and tasteful.

 

I wonder whether the critics would like to put forward their ideas for what they think would have been an appropriate commemoration.

June

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Sure: a simple drumhead service followed by a period of peace and reflection. Inter-faith to reflect the various creeds and races who were involved. Nothing more needed - making it into some form of light entertainment extravaganza is un-necessary and rather tasteless.

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The BBC would not have liked that. 

Edited by Hyacinth1326
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Had all the ceremony and wreath laying, respectful silence this morning at Tyne Cot.

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I think they got it about right. I learned a couple of things I didn't know and if the same is true of everyone else who watched then that's a good thing. I am not sure a simple drumhead service would have had the same effect.  They produced a set of programmes that informed, educated, and entertained. That's what they are meant to do.

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23 minutes ago, Steven Broomfield said:

 Inter-faith to reflect the various creeds and races who were involved.

No thanks. The ceremony this morning had only a mere smidgeon of religion. That's quite enough.

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16 minutes ago, Gareth Davies said:

I think they got it about right. I learned a couple of things I didn't know and if the same is true of everyone else who watched then that's a good thing. I am not sure a simple drumhead service would have had the same effect.  They produced a set of programmes that informed, educated, and entertained. That's what they are meant to do.

 

The educating and entertaining parts are fine, but not my cup of tea as a massive top-end production. Simple and understated: not War Horse and the West End Stage meets the Menin Gate.

29 minutes ago, Hyacinth1326 said:

The BBC would not have liked that. 

 

Quite, so I would ask whether we are remembering the fallen or providing an opportunity for immensely over-rewarded celebrities to strut their stuff.

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I thought the PoW (or King Charles as Kirsty called him and instantly apologised) was rather lacking in emotion considering that the men were fighting for his granddad. 

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