At the eleventh minute of the eleventh hour, the guns fell silent.
The combatants had exhausted themselves while slaughtering most of a generation of young men. In the end the “Great War” settled nothing. Instead of being the “War to End All Wars” the peace treaty ensured a second and even more destructive replay a mere two decades later.
Our cousins in the UK and the Commonwealth call this Armistice Day, in memory of the fallen. While we payed a blood price in the First World War, it paled in comparison to what the other combatants suffered, and indeed in comparison to our own Civil War. We thus remember our fallen on Memorial Day, and instead honor those who have served our Republic in the Armed Forces on this day we know as Veterans Day.
Freedom is not and never has been free; it is bought and paid for with the blood, sweat, suffering, and turmoil of those who stand between us, and those who would enslave us.