Reflecting upon the storming of the Bastille and the French Revolution | Washington Times Communities

Today is Bastille Day, commemortating that day in 1789 when the Bastille, a fortress built in 1370, was attacked to obtain gunpowder and cannon to defend the mob against the King’s Army. This is the event that began the French Revolution that reached its peak in brutality with the Terror in 1793 with executions via the guillotine. It is said that possiblly 20,000 victims were executed. In these times, being suspect was enough to condemn. Early political correctness gone amok. 
Have some knowledge of Bastille Day and the French Revolution is important. Crane Brinton in “Anatomy of Revolution”  explains revolution by looking at revolutions in France in detail, but also Russia, England and our own revolution in 1775. All are different and the differences are critical. Our revolution, for example, never had a terror.
Take a look at this article and look at Brinton’s book. Happy Bastille Bay or VIve L’France.

Memorial Day Considerations

On this Memorial Day, my thoughts go to those who have served their nation. I, of course, think of my shipmates on the USS Greenwich Bay (AVP 41), USS Enterprise (CVN 65), and the Naval Base at Guantanamo Bay. I especially think of Martin Brown, a shipmate on the Greenwich Bay, who died recently. Martin was a perfect sailor and a close friend. I also think of relatives who served in the Revolution at Kings Mountain, the Civil War at Gettysburg, World War I on a battleship, World War II on Hawaii, and Guam and Korea, at Pork Chop Hill. 

The Korean War veteran, Uncle Bub Niven, was a Sergeant in the Army Medical Corp. He wrote to me and said,”If you ever join the Army, make sure it’s the Salvation Army,”  After the war, I asked how he made Sergeant, and he said, “I was the only one left.” 

What this means is that we all have a duty to serve our country in some way, and the most poignant way is in the military service, where we risk life to protect our fellow citizens. This willingness to sacrifice has a life long effect on veterans and makes them great and responsible citizens.

I have walked the ground over which my relative, Malcolm Niven, attacked. It was a moving experience and we should all, on this Memorial Day, walk in the shoes of those who have gone before us and share their commitment to our country. Happy Memorial Day, remember.