Was Canada Effective in World War II? ASK THE WORLD

I used to always state that Quora.com was a site where people could ask questions on any topic, and those who feel qualified attempt to answer them.¬† “It’s much like Yahoo! Answers”, I would further explain.¬† But it’s becoming increasingly clear that this is not a fair comparison.¬† ¬†It’s becoming more like a bunch of yahoos WITH answers making up answers.¬† And doing an even worse job with some of the questions.¬† Quora doesn’t make people stupid.¬† It just makes stupid people more accessible to the general public.¬† And as the old adage says – “stupidity is contagious, and there’s no known cure”.

The question popped up a few days ago, and I couldn’t believe it.¬† I also couldn’t keep quiet.¬† How dare the uneducated chatter class insult the memory of the tens of thousands of Canadians who gave their lives for our global freedom (yep, including the freedom of the brainwave that wrote this question, no matter where he or she lives).¬† This writer should be happy to discover that Canada was very effective in World War II, along with their Allied partners.¬† It’s why we aren’t speaking German or Japanese today.

WHAT FOLLOWS IS MY RESPONSE, word-for-word, to this highly controversial question.  Photos were later added for this blog article only.


You‚Äôll have to excuse my homeland of Canada – we were amiss apparently by not personally educating YOU on our war effectiveness from 1939‚Äď1945. Let‚Äôs fix that. There are a few people you should talk to:

  • Workman John Hawkins of Toronto checks the tags of Bren machine-guns at the John Inglis Co. plant in Toronto. Canada produced millions of arms for the Allied war effort. ¬© Archives Canada mikan-3197327

    ASK THE BRITISH  how effective we were. Before we even sent a single man, gun, plane, tank or ship Рwe made sure to take care of the British people themselves.  Remember, they live on an island, and risked being isolated by the Nazis, after the war started in September 1939.

    Canadian exports accounted for as much as 77% of British wheat and flour consumption in 1941, 39% of the bacon, 15% of the eggs, 24% of the cheese, and 11% of the evaporated milk that the British imported globally.

    Abandoned British equipment on the beach at Dunkirk. Although 340,000 troops were evacuated from Dunkirk, the British Army left behind: 120,000 vehicles, 600 tanks, 1000 field guns, 500 anti-aircraft guns, 850 anti-tank guns, 8000 Bren guns, 90,000 rifles and half a million tons of stores and ammunition. (Credit: LIFE Magazine, 1940)

    Britain also had to leave 75,000 of their 80,000 vehicles behind in the evacuation at Dunkirk in 1940. Virtually defenseless on the ground, Britain turned to Canada – and particularly the Canadian auto industry – to replace what had been lost. Canada not only replaced those losses – we also did much more.

    Canada produced more than 800,000 military transport vehicles, 50,000 tanks, 40,000 field, naval, and anti-aircraft guns, and 1,700,000 small arms. 38% of this production was used by the British military alone. The Canadian Army “in the field” had a ratio of one vehicle for every three soldiers, making it the most mechanized field force in the war.

    Canada also loaned $1.2 billion on a long-term basis to Britain immediately after the war; these loans were fully repaid in late 2006. That’s the equivalent of about $17.7 billion today.

  • Canadians landing at Juno Beach. (Credit: Le Conseil Regional De Basse-Normandie / Library and Archives Canada)

    ASK THE FRENCH how effective we were. On June 6, 1944, 14,000 Canadian troops stormed Juno Beach, arriving on 110 Canadian ships and supported by 10,000 Canadian sailors, part of 150,000 Allied troops total, who were part of the greatest invasion by sea in world history. Canada was the only nation that captured its beach and fulfilled all Her orders on D-Day. We suffered over 1,000 casualties that day alone.

    The French WILL tell you we were effective, by the way – they were occupied by the Germans for over 4 years – but then just 74 days after D-Day, we liberated Paris, and less than one year after D-Day, our little nation had assisted in bringing down the Third Reich completely – an empire that conquered 11 nations on 2 continents with 20 million battle-hardened troops, And Hitler was dead. Were we effective. They would shout a resounding ‚ÄúOui!‚ÄĚ

Dutch Ambassador to Canada, Dr. J.H. van Roijin and Mrs. van Roijin, greeting Dutch immigrants arriving by ship in Montreal, June 1947. (Credit: George Hunter / National Film Board of Canada. Photothèque / Library and Archives Canada / PA-123476)

ASK THE DUTCH how effective we were. Our country welcomed Queen Juliana, Prince Bernhard and the other members of the Dutch royal family as our guests for 5 years, after the Nazis invaded their Kingdom in June 1940. Dutch Princess Margriet was born in Ottawa Civic Hospital.

Later, Canada almost single-handedly liberated the Netherlands from the Nazis on May 9, 1945, and the Dutch still celebrate Liberation Day (unofficially called ‚ÄúCanada Day‚ÄĚ) with Canadian flags flying in Amsterdam on that day, citizens still running to give our aged soldiers flowers as they march or ride in parades there.

In a decades-old Dutch tradition, schoolchildren visit the Canadian War Cemetery in Holten, Netherlands on Christmas Eve every year, where nearly 1,400 Canadian soldiers are buried, and they place candles on every grave. More immigrants arrived in Canada in the 1950s from the Netherlands than from any other nation in the world, including America. In fact, the 2016 Canadian Census reported 1,111,655 persons of Dutch origin living in Canada out of 37 million Canadians. Did they find us effective? They would say ‚Äúja!‚ÄĚ

  • In fact, I’d even recommend ASKING THE GERMANS how effective we were. Particularly the German troops that were garrisoned at the town of Zwolle, in the Netherlands. Canadian soldier L√©o Major was the only Canadian and one of only three soldiers in the British Empire and Commonwealth to ever receive the Distinguished Conduct Medal (DCM) twice in separate wars. In 1945, he single-handedly liberated the city of Zwolle, the Netherlands from German army occupation. He was sent as a scout with one of his best friends, but he thought the town was too beautiful for a full scale attack. So the next rational option was to clear it out himself. A firefight broke out and his friend was killed, but that didn‚Äôt stop him – he put the commanders of each group of soldiers he found at gunpoint, and the entire unit would end up being taken prisoner as a result. He ended up taking nearly 100 Germans prisoner that night, until the entire city was clear of Nazis. He received his second DCM during the Korean War for leading the capture of a key hill in 1951.

(Credit: Globe & Mail.)

Canada declared war in Germany just 7 days after Great Britain and France, and had troops in Europe literally weeks later. It would take a further 26 months before the United States would enter the War. By the time the War was over, Canada had over 1.1 million soldiers in uniform – about 33% of our entire adult male population.

At the end of the Second World War, Canada had one of the largest navies in the world, with 95,000 men and women in uniform, and 434 commissioned vessels including cruisers, destroyers, frigates, corvettes and auxiliaries.

During the 2,159 days that Canadian soldiers fought across Europe, Asia and Africa, 45,000 were killed, and 55,000 were injured. Those total casualties were equal to nearly 1 out of every 10 soldiers that served.

Canadians are not a blunt, brash or boasting lot. We are famous for apologizing for things that aren‚Äôt our fault. So let me say ‚ÄĚsorry‚ÄĚ to you in that vein – during the War, our armed forces were too busy making scraps to make a scrapbook for posterity. Many of our soldiers were gone for six years and then had to be re-integrated back into society after the War. We were also kind of busy burying our dead, and helping rebuild the world.

We’ll be sure to get it right for World War IIIwhich ironically will likely be started by someone like you, asking ill-advised, inflammatory questions like this.


(Editor’s Note:¬† The answer above certainly struck a nerve, which I’m thankful for!¬† ¬†In just the last 30 days alone, nearly 50,000 people on Quora.com read my answer above, and I received dozens of very kind comments.¬† I’ve shared my favorite at the end of this article.

I’m also honoured to have been “upvoted” over 2,900 times, which, according to Quora, means that these readers “believe I answered the question asked and contributed in a meaningful way to Quora’s repository of knowledge”.

If only the ORIGINAL QUESTION had been written with that same goal in mind.

And for the very first time in my life, I believe, something I’ve written has been painstakingly translated word for word into French, by a man I don’t know and have never spoken to before!¬† Merci beaucoup, Pierre Luc Gaudreault de Montr√©al!¬† You did an amazing job / Tu as fait un travail incroyable!

And it’s comments like these that truly make my blog, Quora, Youtube, Twitter…all worthwhile.¬† Thank you Raymond Li!


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By Shawn Jorgensen,  Founding Editor
Calling Out Community
Posted:  January 19, 2020
[God’s Got A Plan For You!]

The Poppy and the Cross

In Canada today, the two most dramatic symbols representing our society, our freedoms Рeven our very identity as Canadians Рare arguably:
– The poppy, which we wear with pride around Remembrance Day (November 11) annually, and…
– The Cross, which we revere every day of the year.

So it should be no surprise that BOTH symbols are under fervent attack by secular humanism and the rise of false religions, more than any other in Canada today.¬† For if the enemies of everything we hold dear simply strike at our foundations, this entire structure we call “Canada”…

…will come crashing to the ground.


Canadian troops at the Second Battle of Ypres, April 1915, and in Afghanistan, December 2008 (Credit: Canadian War Museum – http://www.warmuseum.ca)

THE POPPY

We are NOTHING as a country, if we choose to ignore the individual and corporate sacrifices, (in ‚Äúsweat, blood, toil and tears‚ÄĚ, as Winston Churchill once said), of the brave men and women who have served in our Canadian Armed Forces with honour for 152 years and counting.

On Remembrance Day annually (November 11), we pause for a moment at 11:11 AM local time, in whatever part of this HUGE country’s we may be in, to commemorate the moment when, on that date and time in 1918, the Great War – the “War to End All Wars”, the “Seminal Catastrophe”, or the “European War” as it was known, finally came to a close.

This was the first global war in world history.  Starting in Europe on July 28, 1914, and carrying on for 1,567 days until November 11, 1918.  70 million troops marched onto battlefields in Europe, Asia, Africa and the Middle East, including 60 million Europeans, making it one of the largest wars in history.  It was also the deadliest, claiming 9 million soldiers and 7 million civilians, as a direct result of the war, and over 20 million others from diseases like the Spanish flu, that claimed another 50 to 100 million, starvation and scattered genocides that followed.

Canadian National Vimy Memorial in France – where the names of the 11,285 Canadians who lost their lives in France and who had no known grave are recorded.

We wear a poppy to commemorate what our soldiers did there because it MATTERED.¬† Our young boys stepped into living Hell on hardened battlefields, that had equally hard names to pronounce and spell –¬† like Ypres, Festubert and Givenchy (1915), The Somme (1916), Vimy Ridge, Hill 70, Lens, Passchendaele and Cambrai (1917).¬† In every situation, we did things beyond our training.¬† We successfully completed missions that France and England, who had 1,000 year old military histories, couldn’t do.¬† Canadian soldiers often did the unthinkable – at times, even the impossible – for 1,567 days (from July 28, 1914 to November 11, 1918), and we assisted the Allies in defeating the Central Powers, which included three Empires (German, Ottoman and Austro-Hungarian), as well as¬†Bulgaria.

Little Canada was not even 50 years old when the war started.¬† Only 8 million residents in the whole country then.¬† ¬† We grew up into adulthood before the eyes of the world.¬† So foundational was our input in World War I that the last 100 days, from August 8 to November 11, 1918, are known today as “Canada’s Hundred Days”.¬† At one point during World War I, 7% of Canadians were in uniform, one of the highest participation rates by any army in any war in world history.¬† ¬†If the US had that size of army based on population, it would number 22 million.¬† If China did, their armies would have number 97 million.

The installation ‘Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red’ at the Tower of London, commemorating the centenary of Britain’s involvement in the First World War . (Credit: Geoff Pugh/The Telegraph)

We wear a poppy to show solidarity with the everyday Canadians who fought for us so long ago.¬† They were us.¬† A total of 619,636 Canadians enlisted with the Canadian Expeditionary Force during the war, 424,000 served overseas – and 59,544 died during the war (51,748 as a result of enemy action, and 7,796 from “friendly fire” incidents, accidents and disease).¬† ¬†Hundreds of thousands more worked in the war effort back home, in administration, factories making munitions, equipment, tanks, planes, ships, uniforms, and growing and packaging food and medicine.¬† There wasn’t a familiy in Canada that was untouched by the war – there were likely few in the country that didn’t know someone overseas.¬† Many also knew someone who died there.

And this war was not as advertised – it did not “end all wars”.¬† In fact, just 21 years later, the world would once again be set on fire, with battles raging on three continents, as Hitler and his Nazi hordes attempted to conquer the world.¬† By the time the final bomb had been dropped on Nagasaki on August 8, 1945, and the two wars had finally ended in Europe, Africa and Asia, over 60 million people had died, including 25 million Russian civilians alone.

We wear a poppy to remember that Canadian soldiers changed the world.¬† And Canada had become a new symbol of freedom and hope in the world.¬† ¬†We sent over 1 million soldiers to Europe, many of whom didn’t come home for 6 years in World War II.¬† Tens of thousands didn’t come home at all.¬† We declared war on Hitler just one week after Great Britain and France did, on September 10, 1939.¬† We weren’t forced to – the King had told our government that we had free will to determine if this is was a cause we wanted to send our boys into harm’s way for.¬† We debated it in Parliament, we thought about it, we prayed about it.¬† And we did it.¬† Once we declared war on September 10, we had troops on the ground in Europe just 2 weeks later.¬† And our boys volunteered for it.¬† It took the US another 820 days before they joined the war, and their troops had to be drafted, even then, to do so.

We wear a poppy over our hearts, because we loved these young men, and because they gave all they had, with all their hearts, for us.  We honour the heroic contributions of our soldiers, over the last 1.5 centuries, to the building of our nation.  And to the freedom enjoyed by the entire Western world.  They were literally a force for good that stopped the forces of evil spreading across the globe.

Speaking of which – there are some misguided Cretans who introduced a rainbow poppy this year, just before British Armistice Day – like the gay community wasn’t getting enough attention during commemorations for our war dead?¬† Attempting to turn the poppy into a culturally misappropriated gay symbol is outrageous.

These are likely the same morons that wear a pink triangle as a symbol of connection with the LGBT community – not realizing that the symbol was introduced in the Nazi concentration camp system, along with the yellow star, to help sort out which prisoners were which.

It is also truly disgusting that some in the Muslim community boycott the sale of poppies because they consider it a symbol of “racism”, and some Legion branches in the UK stopped selling them in “certain areas” of Britain to avoid offense, though they have been selling them throughout the UK since 1921.¬† This vocal minority of Muslims try to extinguish the symbol altogether – yet they are hardly the spokespeople for racial tolerance in the world.

THE CROSS

In Canada, our freedoms are only authentically maintained when our people still hold dear to the sacrifices symbolized by the POPPY – and we must ‚ÄúNEVER FORGET‚ÄĚ to STAND AND SALUTE those who shed their blood for victories over dictators and despots.

However, that freedom only truly exists in Canada and indeed in EVERY nation on Earth, when the people hold EVEN MORE dear to the Sacrifice actualized by the CROSS of JESUS CHRIST – and we must ‚ÄúBE IN REMEMBRANCE‚ÄĚ to KNEEL, BOW AND CLING to the One who shed His blood for our final victory over the Devil and even Death itself.

I STAND to honor the anthem and the flag, and symbolically pin a poppy OVER MY HEART today, with pride and thankfulness.

But first…

I KNEEL and BOW to honor the Cross, and literally invite the Saviour of the World, Jesus Christ, to LIVE INSIDE MY HEART, with humility and thankfulness.

Because of the sacrifices of Canadians – on far off battlefields – many individual freedoms are enjoyed today by the Canadian people.

But without the Sacrifice of Christ – ‚Äúon a hill far away‚ÄĚ – WE HAVE NO FREEDOM AT ALL – either on this Earth or eternity to come.

‚ÄúSo if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.‚ÄĚ (John 8:36)

‚ÄúIt is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.‚Ä̬† (Galatians 5:1)

‚ÄúIn him and through faith in him we may approach God with freedom and confidence.‚Ä̬† (Ephesians 3:12)

‚ÄúI will walk about in freedom, for I have sought out your precepts.‚Ä̬† (Psalm 119:45)

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By Shawn Jorgensen,  Founding Editor
Calling Out Community
Posted:  November 10, 2019
[God’s Got A Plan For You!]

Vimy Ridge at 100: Canada Rises Up

A cadet stands in front of the National War Memorial in Ottawa during a ceremony to recognize 100 years since the Battle of Vimy Ridge. (Credit: Andrew Foote/CBC)

The steps of the National War Memorial in Ottawa were bathed in the glow of 3,598 candles on Saturday night, April 9, 2017 Рeach one lit to represent a Canadian soldier killed in the First World War Battle of Vimy Ridge.  Canadian Army Cadets then stood guard overnight at our capital city War Memorial to mark the 100th anniversary of Vimy Ridge, fought from April 9-12, 1917.

It seems fitting to include these young cadets in guard duty this week.  They would have been just like all the other boys too young to enlist in active duty as the Great War began.  Left behind while their older brothers, uncles, and fathers went to the fight on foreign fields, these cadets, in a very real sense, are a picture of Canada herself in 1917.  

Though She was 49 years old at the time of this Battle, Canada’s¬†first half century was marked by very little calamity. ¬†That was all about to change on foreign battlefields with names like¬†Ypres, Vimy Ridge, Passchendaele, and others. The horrors seen and sacrifices made in this Battle;¬†the military tactical genius that Canada employed;¬†and the bravery of the young men themselves, would lift¬†Canada internationally from behind¬†Her mother’s (Great Britain) apron to a new¬†level of global respect and recognition,¬†a nation that stands on her own, which Canada has built upon ever since.


VimyCross
The large regimental Celtic cross of the 15th Battalion (48th Highlanders) where it stood 100 years ago on the battlefield near Vimy Ridge. Although there were other wooden crosses fashioned by regimental carpenters, this is one of the very few to survive. (Credit: CBC)

As late as¬†February 2017, you wouldn’t have to go further than a church basement in Toronto to view¬†a historical artifact from the Battle of Vimy¬†Ridge¬†– a¬†100-year old wooden battlefield cross.

Regimental carpenters had pre-built and would quickly paint the names and erect these crosses right on the battlefield, a thankless job that became an art form in itself, as many hundreds of these crosses were erected on far too many bomb-scarred fields across western Europe.

The fact that this cross¬†had survived for a century was a testament to how well it had been taken care of. ¬†CBC reported¬†that it had been transported across the Atlantic to¬†France twice, but had always found its way back to its “temporary” 100-year home in Canada.

CBC continued:

The cross was expertly packed for the voyage along with one poppy for every one of the 57 names etched on it. It will go on display this weekend at the newly opened Vimy Ridge visitor centre. (Credit: Nahlah Ayed/CBC)

Etched¬†on its surface are the names of 57 Canadian soldiers, most from the 15th Battalion, and most of whom were killed in the first hours of that assault. ¬†That makes it one of only a handful of surviving witnesses ‚ÄĒ and a real-time partial record ‚ÄĒ of the heavy Canadian losses in those pivotal opening moments of the battle.

The 15th Battalion was tasked with taking on the Eastern edge of the ridge, which meant advancing over a longer distance, and through more German lines than other Canadian units.

In fact, they expected such heavy casualties with this Battalion that they had actually pre-dug their graves before the battle even began.  They ended up with two sites where multiple Canadian troops from this Battalion were buried together, and each was given a cross.  This was one of those two handmade memorials.

In February 2017, for the first time in a century, and thanks to the Canadian Ministry of Veterans Affairs, this Celtic cross was flown across the Atlantic, where ministry officials were there to greet it and to transport it Рif only temporarily, to the same spot where these people listed are actually buried.

W.H. Collyer died at Vimy Ridge at 17. The legal age to join the Canadian army was 18, so he would have lied about his age in order to enter the fight. (Credit: CBC)

On the 100th Anniversary memorial weekend, and for the first time in 100 years, the cross was raised over the actual graves of those men for a limited time.

As dramatic as the story of this grave marker is, it will, of course, be overshadowed by the incredible size and beauty of the Canadian Vimy Ridge Memorial itself.   It is by far the most dramatic Canadian memorial to any cause on Earth.  At the time that it was being constructed, however, Vimy Ridge was not considered to be as important perhaps as we see it today.

The Vimy Memorial itself changed all that, designed by Canadian architect Walter Seymour Allward, and taking an astonishing 11 years to build.

Canada Bereft” or “Mother Canada” is the largest statue at the front of the memorial and is said to depict “Canada mourning her fallen sons.” Its inscription reads:

“To the valour of their countrymen in the Great War and in memory of their sixty thousand dead this monument is raised by the people of Canada.”

It is often a quiet place, even when there are many visitors, as it really is a place of reflection.

The Vimy Ridge Memorial at night, as seen April 6, 2017, just days before the 100th Anniversary. (Credit: Vimy Ridge Memorial)

And Canada has much to reflect on.  In fact, I had a lump in my throat as I was writing a sentence. What those Canadian men and boys did, beginning in blinding rain and sleet, on that early Easter Monday morning 100 years ago, is still today looked at as being a marvel of modern warfare.

Situated in northern France, the heavily-fortified seven-kilometre ridge held a commanding view over the Allied lines. Anyone in the future who¬†would be assaulting the Ridle¬†over an open graveyard, since previous French attacks had failed –with over 100,000 casualties.

Canada was given this task next – and to be blunt, there was some mentality¬†of Canadians being “cannon fodder” in this equation. ¬†History shows that Canadian troops, when fighting as part of a larger British Empire¬†force, were often thrown into the front lines of horrific battles, in order to risk¬†less British lives.

Canadian troops go “over the wall” and into a great victory in Vimy Ridge on April 9, 1917. Troops took the Ridge in one day, suffering the greatest one-day loss of life in Canadian history. (Credit: Metro News)

All four divisions of the little Canadian Expeditionary Force ¬†– ¬†mostly volunteers – were brought¬†together for the first time¬†in Canada’s 49-year history to fight this Battle. ¬†Including one British division, they¬†numbered¬†170,000 troops¬†over 145,000 Canadians, virtually¬†our entire Army at that time.

If we had lost – if Canada¬†had failed on that Ridge – it would’ve been an unthinkable disaster for our nation, as we risked¬†destroying our entire national Army. ¬†I get angry just thinking about the risk our nation was asked to take.

To capture this difficult position, the Canadians would carefully plan and rehearse their attack.  To give them greater flexibility and firepower in battle,  specialist roles as machine-gunners, rifle-men and grenade-throwers underwent weeks of training behind the lines using models to represent the battlefield, and new maps were drawn up from aerial photographs to guide their way.

British-dug tunnels around the Vimo Ridge area. One still exists for tourists to explore to present day. (Credit: Wikipedia)

bring men forward safely for the assault, engineers dug deep tunnels from the rear to the front. Despite this training and preparation, the key to victory was a devastating artillery barrage that would crelate a moving wall of high explosives and shrapnel that forced the Germans to stay in their treaches and away from their machine-guns.

In the week leading up to the battle, Canadian and British artillery pounded the enemy positions on the ridge, using new artillery tactics that allowed the gunners to first target, then destroy enemy positions.  Canadians were given an almost limitless supply of artillery shells, which destroyed hardened defences and barbed wire.  The Canadian infantry would be well supported when it went into battle Рwith over 1,000 artillery pieces laying down withering, supportive fire.

6-inch gun of the Royal Garrison Artillery firing over Vimy Ridge behind Canadian lines at night (Credit: Wikipedia)

Attacking together for the first time, the four Canadian divisions stormed the ridge at 5:30am on April 9, 1917. More than 15,000 Canadian infantry overran the Germans all along the front.  Incredible bravery and discipline allowed the infantry to continue moving forward under heavy fire, even when their officers were killed.

There were countless acts of sacrifice, as Canadians single-handedly charged machine-gun nests or forced the surrender of Germans in protective dugouts.  Hill 145, the highest and most important feature of the Ridge, and where the Vimy monument now stands, was captured in a case of bayonets versus German machine-gun positions.

It took there more days of costly battle to deliver the final victory. The Canadian operation was an important success, even if the larger British and French offensive, of which it had been a part, had failed. But it was victory at a heavy cost:  on top of the near 3,600 Canadians killed, more tHan 7,000 were wounded.

Prince Charles, the British Prince of Wales, said so dramatically and beautifully at the 100th Anniversary ceremony on April 9, 2017:

Prince Charles and sons Prince William and Prince Harry, visit one of the only still-accessible tunnels used by Canadian troops at Vimy Ridge. (Credit: Daily Mail)

‚Äú(The Canadians) succeeded in seizing the vital high ground of Vimy ‚Äď a task in which many others before them had failed,‚ÄĚ Prince Charles said.

‚ÄúHowever, victory came at an unbearably heavy cost. This was, and remains, the single bloodiest day in Canadian military history. Yet Canadians displayed a strength of character and commitment to one another that is still evident today. They did not waver. This was Canada at its best. ‚Ķ ‚ÄĚ [Emphasis mine]

More than just a memorial to one specific Battle and the nearly 3,600 soldiers who died there, Vimy Ridge became a national place of mourning for all soldiers of the Great War.  In fact, there are 11,285 names carved into the monument, all Canadians who died during the Great War but who have no known resting place. The names are those still found across Canada today.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and French President François Hollande honor the fallen at the cemetery at the Vimy Ridge Memorial on April 9, 2017. (Credit: Metro News)

The April 9, 2017 ceremony for the 100th anniversary of the Battle of Vimy Ridge was attended by more than 25,000 Canadians, with millions more Canadians estimated to be listening on the radio and over television.

To them, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau summarized the day:

“As I see the faces gathered here ‚Äď veterans, soldiers, caregivers, so many young people ‚Äď I can‚Äôt help but feel a torch is being passed,‚ÄĚ Trudeau said in his speech. ‚ÄúOne hundred years later, we must say this, together. And we must believe it: Never again.‚ÄĚ

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By Shawn J., Founding Editor
Calling Out Community
Posted April 9, 2017

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