2019-03-21-Viking River Cruise-France · Key Blogs

The Great War revisited

Today’s exploration took us two hours north of Paris to the battlefields of World War I – historians refer to it as The Great War. A century ago these fields and rolling hills of northern France / southern Belgium were mired in trench warfare with neither side able to make much progress and with thousands of lives lost months on end.

The full story of this dramatic period in world history I recommend you visit In Flanders Field museum in the city of Ypres/ Leper (French/Flemish). Housed in the spectacular cloth hall in the town square.

All over the surrounding fields are memorials and cemeteries for the million plus soldiers that died here between 1914 and 18. One of the nes we visited is the “Soldatenfriedhof” also referred to as the student cemetery where over 40’000 German soldiers are laid to rest. It is a sobering reminder of the tragedy of war.

I leave you today with a piece of wrought iron art installed as part of the 2016 student project that I felt expressed the fragility of peace in a powerful way.

One thought on “The Great War revisited

  1. You really know how to capture the magnitude and essence of what to see and experience and its extraordinary significance. My heart is heavy, as it should be, after seeing and reading about this chronicle.

    Thank you, Rene.



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