Saturday, June 6, 2009

Where have all the flowers gone?

June 6, 1944, D-Day, Normandy, France

In the distance are the 100-foot cliffs of Pointe du Hoc, climbed by American Army Rangers while under fire from German troops who were fortified above. During two days of fighting below and above the cliffs, the Ranger units suffered about 60 percent causalities. Fram's photos, taken in 2004.

Not just another day in June

This is one of the monuments commemorating the Allied landings on the beaches of Normandy on June 6, 1944. Approximately 160,000 Allied troops invaded France from the air and from the sea. This is on Omaha Beach, which was stormed by American troops.

About 1,500 Americans died on that one day

One of many cemeteries in which are buried thousands of soldiers from several nations who died 65 years ago during the invasion of France, and during ensuing weeks as Allied troops forced the German Army ever steadily to retreat into its homeland.

"Where Have All the Flowers Gone?"
Words and music by Pete Seeger

Where have all the flowers gone?
Long time passing
Where have all the flowers gone?
Long time ago
Where have all the flowers gone?
Girls have picked them every one
When will they ever learn?
When will they ever learn?

Where have all the young girls gone?
Long time passing
Where have all the young girls gone?
Long time ago
Where have all the young girls gone?
Taken husbands every one
When will they ever learn?
When will they ever learn?

Where have all the young men gone?
Long time passing
Where have all the young men gone?
Long time ago
Where have all the young men gone?
Gone for soldiers every one
When will they ever learn?
When will they ever learn?

Where have all the soldiers gone?
Long time passing
Where have all the soldiers gone?
Long time ago
Where have all the soldiers gone?
Gone to graveyards every one
When will they ever learn?
When will they ever learn?

Where have all the graveyards gone?
Long time passing
Where have all the graveyards gone?
Long time ago
Where have all the graveyards gone?
Covered with flowers every one
When will we ever learn?
When will we ever learn?

9 comments:

Katy said...

I'm not familiar with that song, Fram, but its lyrics are very moving. Thank you for posting it.

Terrible, terrible, terrible. And have we learned? Will we ever learn? I'm very sad to say I think not.

TheChicGeek said...

Hi Fram :) This is a very nice posting and memory tribute to all the many soldiers who died on this day. Your photos are beautiful. It must have been a very moving feeling to be standing in the same spot as this historic battle. Seeger's song is perfect here too :)

Have a Super Fun Day Today!
xox

Magdalena said...

Beautiful.

A Cuban In London said...

At first I thought that the photos were paintings. Congrats on the quality.

Just the other dau the BBC had a special programme on the Jedburgh brigades. I'd never heard of them. These brigades were maede up of normal, run of the mill civilians, who infiltrated enemies' lines and wreaked havoc by interrupting comunications, destroying supplies chains and the like. This post reminded me of them. Many thanks for this tribute and many thanks for that Peter's song. I'd completely forgot about it.

Greetings from London.

Fram said...

Greetings and salutations ....

My yesterday and my today turned out to be more than bargained for, beginning with but only three hours sleep Friday night. I had a high school graduation reception to attend on Saturday, followed by a wedding and reception, and I had thought to include a bit of business as well.

Unexpected, overnight company with long conversation brought about a second consecutive night with little sleep. Today has been busy, as well. I am not certain if I will catch up with reading posts and commenting on them anytime soon.

Katy .... the song is an anti-war "anthem" from the 1960s. Many have sung it, Peter, Paul and Mary among the prominent, as well as the writer himself, Pete Seeger. I promise to read your posts.

Kelly .... I have stood on many battlefields and visited many cemeteries filled with veterans of American wars. These things bring home the realities of war, and make Seeger's song ever so poignant.

Magdalena .... Your homeland has suffered through wars since before there was an America, and I hope it will see no more of them. The area around Normandy is beautiful, the song is beautiful and, sometimes, the world is beautiful.

CiL .... This trip was the first time I used a digital camera, and it has served me well for my blog. This is the third time I have used photographs taken on that trip from Normandy, and from other places in England, France and Italy, as well.

Special operations teams probably are as old as war itself but, for whatever reason, the Jedburgh action has never drawn much attention from either historians or the entertainment industry.

Magdalena said...

Thank you very much, Fram, I would like the same for your country and for everyone. Unfortunately we are just people. But very lucky people, if we can breath and live in such a beautiful world.

We will wait for you :-)

Piper .. said...

Heyy Fram, missed reading your posts! Excellent pictures. Especially loved the Omaha beach one. And unrelated to the post, did you know there`s a Clapton concert next week at the Excel energy center?? You attending?

Fram said...

Magdalena of the Morning .... the very early morning, for me.

Sometimes we are so busy that it is difficult to see all the beauty in the world, but it is there for people who take the time to look around themselves closely and who have the gift of patience.

Fram said...

Great to see you back and posting, Piper. I hope your world becomes orderly again before much longer.

To see the beaches of Normandy now, one would never guess they were the scene of carnage 65 years ago.

At the risk of enflaming the entire civilized world, I really am not an Eric Clapton fan. If it were a Cream or a Derek and the Dominos reunion concert, I might be tempted. There is a Moody Blues concert there in August that I might be more inclined to attend if I am in the neighborhood but, in a general sense, I am more into "heavier" rock.

Something special ....