The Wisdom of Harry Patch

Harry Patch was buried today. He was Britain’s last combat veteran of World War I. He died on July 25 at age 111. He was also the oldest man in Europe. Patch, who rarely talked about his war experiences, boasted that he hadn’t killed anyone in combat. “War isn’t worth one life,” Patch said, it is “calculated and condoned slaughter of human beings.” In his autobiography The Last Fighting Tommy, Patch wrote that “politicians who took us to war should have been given the guns and told to settle their differences themselves, instead of organising nothing better than legalised mass murder.” In the last years of his life, Patch warned some young naval recruits that they shouldn’t join.

Harry Patch is a veteran that we can truly call a hero.

Author: Laurence Vance

Laurence Vance holds degrees in history, theology, accounting, and economics. He has written and published twelve books and regularly contributes articles and book reviews to both secular and religious periodicals.

15 thoughts on “The Wisdom of Harry Patch”

  1. Looking at Britain today it is hard to see why any of those soldiers bothered to fight for it. The loony Marxist Labour party has turned England into a multicultural wasteland.

    1. Yes, I quite agree! First those damn Anglo-Saxons (Germans) then those bloody Normans (Vikings via France) !

  2. Andy: Are you saying there was no immigration to the UK before 1997 and the worst thing New Labour have done is not mindlessly follow the US into war but to have created a "multicultural wasteland"? Care to elaborate? Is it a "wasteland" because there are people of other cultures (as there have always been) or because of failed economic and social policies?

    1. Hope this comment gets past the censor. My others didn't. Every society and every age has its taboos. In Victorian times it was homosexuality (then seen as an 'abomination'). In our politically correct time it is diversity. To even dare to suggest the importation and creation of a racial underclass is unwise is blasphemy of the highest order to our current social engineers (who of course always know what is best for us). I will say this. If King George V and Kaiser Wilhelm were magically brought back today and each spent a day wandering around London and Berlin it would be the Kaiser who would feel more at home and recognize Germany.

  3. Both wars were lost to britain – and the British didn't even realize that by ruining Germany, they were ruining themselves. They do not realize even today that the prize they paid for their utter lack of fairness was their empire.
    So.

    1. Quite true. How much different British history would have been had the British elites decided around the turn of the century to pursue a policy of Anglo-German cooperation. Instead they threw in their hat with France (their traditional enemy since the days of William the conqueror) and Tsarist Russia (the least free and most corrupt country in Europe).

  4. In most places where the British had ruled over,they made sure that conflicts and fighting continue after they left,from Northern Irland,India,middle east and Africa.

  5. Pardon me for asking but WHY is Mr. patch a "hero"? Did he discover a cure for cancer? No. He is considered a "hero" because he fought in the Great war, probably the most senseless and avoidable war ever fought in Europe. I can't think of one single good thing that came out of that war. Britain could have easily avoided involvement in it and would have been much better off staying out. The soldiers who fought in this war were misguided fools at best , certainly not "heroes" by any means. This same nonsense infects America today (the heir to British imperialism). Why are the American soldiers in Iraq "heroes"? Did Iraq attack America? Did Iraq threaten to attack America? No and no again.

  6. cancer will never be cured as long as the canser society exists,as wars will never end as long as we have people willing to be lead into this needless carnage

    1. Andy, you miss the point. He is a hero for realizing the futility of war, unlike the others celebrated for aggressiveness and killing. Particularly, he is a hero for smacking the politicians in the face. There is no more injustice in modern Western culture than for the elite to send others to war on their behalf while they sit in posh comfort in their halls of political splendor. 200 years ago the nobility — the political class — at least fought their own wars, often leading the charge. It's a 20th century to force others through conscription to do die for their corrupt bidding while their own children are socialites (much as they often attend private schools vs. govt, just as politicians have opulent health care and retirement benefits while the riff-raff get scraps in exchange for their absconded labor.

  7. Andy, you miss the point. He is a hero for realizing the futility of war, unlike the others celebrated for aggressiveness and killing. Particularly, he is a hero for smacking the politicians in the face. There is no more injustice in modern Western culture than for the elite to send others to war on their behalf while they sit in posh comfort in their halls of political splendor. 200 years ago the nobility — the political class — at least fought their own wars, often leading the charge. It's a 20th century to force others through conscription to do die for their corrupt bidding while their own children are socialites (much as they often attend private schools vs. govt, just as politicians have opulent health care and retirement benefits while the riff-raff get scraps in exchange for their absconded labor.

  8. Globalization has an effect on the processes of our daily lives like education. It has allowed the students and teachers around the world to increase their contacts with the help of technology which has caused betterment in education procedures around the world.

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