Memory is a very important function. It allows us the opportunity to remember the past as we live the present and plan for the future. On Memorial Day, we remember the American Soldiers who died while serving in the Armed Forces. It is a powerful day during which we take a moment or two to think about those people who paid the supreme price. These men and women are our American Heroes. Their sacrifices have helped keep America independent and safe.
While today is America’s Memorial Day, each country has its own day of observance. Recently we observed two such days in Israel. Yom Hazikoron is the day which we remember the fallen soldiers. Many of them are buried on Mount Hertzal, Israel’s Military Cemetery. I remember attending the funeral of Gideon Wachsman an Israeli-American soldier who had been captured by Hamas and murdered several days after his capture. In Israel, we also celebrate Yom Hashoa in memory of the six million Jews murdered by the Nazis. On this occasion, a siren is sounded and the country comes to a halt for two long minutes.
It would be nice to say that war is a thing of the past and that memory would enable us to plan for a peaceful future. Unfortunately, many people do not learn from these horrific situations. Children are killed by terrorists at a concert in Manchester; innocent victims are killed in Syria, Belgium, and France.
As the song goes “When will we ever learn” ……. We can only hope that the prophetic words of Jeremiah are soon fulfilled. May they turn their weapons into pruning hooks, and may there be no war anymore.