Today many of us held a two minute silence, on the eleventh hour, of the eleventh day, of the eleventh month, in memory of fallen soldiers and to mark the end of the First World.
The First and Second World War lasted for many years with soldiers fighting in all weather conditions. I wanted to take a moment to think about the significance of weather in the history of war.
World War One was a modern war fought on the ground, sea and in the skies. On the ground in the trenches the conditions, as a result of bad weather in the winter, were extremely wet and muddy. Many soldiers suffered from trench foot and frost bite meaning many of them had leg amputations or lost fingers and toes. When the trenches flooded soldiers also drowned. These men were at the mercy of the elements.
Although weather was a hindrance in some cases during the wars, in some situations commanders were able to use weather conditions to their advantage.
The most famous weather prediction is that of World War Two – the D-Day Landing. Had the chief meteorologist Group Captain James Stagg not predicted the break in the poor weather conditions on June 6th 1944, the D-Day invasion could have been delayed for a further couple of weeks waiting for the conditions to improve in the allied forces favour. Therefore, potentially changing history as we know it. With the fate of the soldiers and the outcome of the war there couldn’t have been any more pressure in making the right decision. A decision that, for the allied forces and history, proved to be right.
So on this day we can appreciate, thank and remember the sacrifice that all soldiers took to protect their country.