This new knowledge allayed my curiosity but it did nothing to make me less ignorant. Back home we celebrated some wars we thought we had won. We sang songs and held military parades. And then there is the war we were living; the war against and with terrorism. This war does not need to be comemorated as it is ever so much alive and an every day part of lives. This is the war that says to us 'lest you forget' with every new terrorist attack or military operation. The sides are blurred and the relentless damage is making dead soldiers out of innocent children. Fearful when alive, revered and glorified when dead.
As I ramble about the two perspectives on war that I have encountered, I realise that there are at least 10 wars going on in the world today with more than 1000 battle related deaths in a year per war. If you account for the non-battle deaths, civilian attacks and other armed conflicts, the number goes significantly higher. According to a study (2014), out of the 162 countries of the world, only 11 are not involved, directly or indirectly, in an armed conflict.
The developed world comemorates a bygone war and continues to fund the current out-of-sight ones; the developing world is almost anesthetised with the ongoing wars; the under developed world is unaware of any state of being that is not war; and the recently shattered world is desperately trying to escape from the inexplicable war and drowning in the process. So many worlds, so many wars, so many perspectives. Red poppies or white or none, I remain confused. I remain ignorant.
In all this confusion, the fact remains that soldiers and civilians are still dying every day in real or converted battlefields, for causes unknown, contexts unsure. Lest we forget.