Thursday, October 04, 2007
I , along with much of America, am watching the Ken Burns' documentary series on World War II - called The War. I am thankful for dvr technology. I feel like I need to memorise this show - and it is many hours long - to commit the images and words as well as the facts to heart and memory. World War II was so much the backdrop of my childhood. Though my own father was exempted from military service because of his scientific expertise, the fathers of my friends all seem to have been in the war. I remember that the principal of my Houston Elementary School, Mr. Sloane, had left his left arm somewhere in Europe. I remember that a girl in my fourth grade class said her Dad had been a prisoner of war and almost starved to death. That's the first time I heard the label "death march". Bob's Dad, Jean's Dad , Kent's Dad - so many dads and uncles - the doctors, lawyers, professors, grown up men of my childhood (and some of the women too) fought that war and survived. This documentary series really hits the horror of the war, the daily horrors the individuals lived through for years - the fear, the privations, the many mistakes in judgement - and in the end the need that the war be fought.