And this is just a single city from the World War II. I’m pretty sure most of Europe and half of Russia looked like that. And these are cities, which survived. Think of hundreds or thousands of villages that were completely erased from the face of the earth. Think of tens of millions of people who perished. All that was just 70 years ago. And it looks likes we haven’t learned or remembered our lessons. It’s 2015 and the world is still at war.
“It’s different now”, you might say. But I’ll argue. People die the same. And places are destroyed the same. Just have a look at some of the images from Korea, Vietnam, Afghanistan, Iraq, Yugoslavia, Syria, Egypt … the list of countries grows every year.
My great-grandfather was there. My grandfather was there. My mother was there. And last year I was there. Standing in front of the Reichstag building was very moving and emotional. As was visiting war memorials.
This colored footage of Berlin just three month after the World War II has ended is amazing. The areal shots at the end of the video of the destroyed city are mind blowing. Look at all the people involved in restoration. Look at all the military presence.
Found over at kottke.
Today, Cyprus is mourning the death of Glafcos Clerides. I’m not much into politics in any country, but I did like him. He was the President back in 1996 when I came to Cyprus, and he remained so during my first few years here. As I said, I didn’t care much for politics, but I felt the good vibe. And even years after he left from major TV news, it was always pleasant to see him on an occasion – always respectful and positive, even in old age.
I’ve spoken to quite a few people about Clerides and I seem to get mixed feedback. Some people liked him, some didn’t. But the common theme seemed to be respect. You can agree or disagree with his political views and his involvement in different movements and initiatives, but, I think, nobody can say that he was a slacker or a silly guy. He believed in something and he was pushing it. He worked a lot, and he has achieved plenty.
Also, he did plenty before he became active in Cyprus politics. For example, during the World War II he was a pilot in Royal Air Force. In 1942 he was shot down over Germany and was captured, spending the rest of the war years a prisoner of war. His military activity has been noticed and he was mentioned in dispatches.
As I said, I don’t really care much for the political games. But I for one will miss this charming old guy. Rest in peace, Glafkos, and thank you so much for that you have done.
Via this Kottke post I was reminded of the triangular letters of the World War II. That was a good historical summary. Nice of them to include the folding instructions as well. With all the advances in electronic communication channels recently, this feels like one of those historical artifacts, sliding away into the darkness of the past…