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Why I wear my dad’s wartime dog tags

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MOST of us who frequent TCW are fully aware that we are fighting a war to preserve our freedom. The weapon of choice ranged against us is fear, and it is thrown at us every minute of every day. It stretches from deadly diseases, ‘climate change’, the nonsense of Net Zero, threats to our livelihoods, cash and savings, the huge cost of living increases, the worry for our children’s future. Not to mention the death and destruction in war-torn countries. Regarding the latter: when you listen to Dwight D Eisenhower’s farewell speech in 1961, warning of the dangers of the military industrial complex, it is blatantly obvious where the constant succession of conflicts, across the world, originate from.

Neil Oliver is one of the best pro-freedom voices around today. His Patreon site and his appearances on GB News have given him a worldwide platform. What makes him compelling is his transparent sincerity, his courage and his in-depth knowledge of history. This history enables him to compare and contrast what is happening now with what has happened before. There is always a contest between good and evil and it is nothing new. The only thing that changes are the methods employed and the battlefields chosen. Today’s battlefields, whilst territorial in some places are, in the main, battlefields of the mind.

If we are to combat fear when we know we are under attack, then it figures that all of us, as individuals, must engage in the battle for our minds head-on and understand that we can win this war not by giving in and becoming frightened, but by actively taking control of how we think and react when going about our daily lives. I take heart, like Neil, from history and by getting a degree of perspective in my life.

I was most fortunate in having had a wonderful, loving father who was my best friend. His character was a testament to a life well lived. Like many of his generation, he volunteered to join the Royal Air Force at the age of 18, and in 1940 was posted to Africa. He wore ‘dog tags’ so that in the event of his death his body could be identified and the news conveyed to his family. Everyone who was on active service during the war had to wear these tags, including my father-in-law who fought at Anzio, and my uncle who helped to sink the Bismarck aboard HMS Rodney as a fresh-faced Petty Officer in the Royal Navy. I’m sure most of you reading this will have similar stories to tell within your families.

My dad fought for freedom, as did the all the members of the British armed services. When they were abroad they didn’t know whether they would come back home or be buried in some foreign field. Dad survived the war, unlike the 384,000 United Kingdom servicemen and servicewomen who perished, though he came home with malaria. The bravery and fortitude of that generation has always inspired me; it is indisputable that ordinary British people coupled with their allies defeated the evils of fascism and Nazism and paved the way for a ‘baby boomer’ generation that has enjoyed a quite uniquely privileged life when looked at in a historical context.

I think of my dad every day. These thoughts give me joy and happiness. He was a brilliant father and a lovely man who was generous to a fault. His memory and what he and his compatriots went through give me perspective on my life. I wear my dad’s dog tags round my neck not in some mawkish way but as inspiration. Compared with previous generations the enemy at my door is mild. I’m not in the line of fire of machine guns, and living in Yorkshire I doubt whether bombs will be dropped on me. What I do have to contend with is a generation of politicians who are perhaps the most incompetent and cowardly of any era and who are the puppets of the evil, exceedingly small cabal who exist to pursue money and power. Truth and the public good is as familiar to them as is snow in the Sahara.

I am not frightened by these people. I never have been. They are the successors of those against whom my dad took up arms. I live my life each day in the knowledge that, as history shows, the psychopathic, self-aggrandising elite will eventually be brought down. It’s not a question of if, it’s more a question of when. Goodness and decency will always prevail. The human spirit is ultimately indefatigable.

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Harry Hopkins
Harry Hopkins
Harry Hopkins is a furniture designer/maker who loves to write.

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