April 15, 2013

Do we find the cost of freedom/Buried in the ground?

A field of poppies, in central Israel (2009)
I first published this post on Memorial Day in the USA in 2009. Its subtext, that we are called to address the forces that drive men to war, holds for me everywhere, every day. Today, on Memorial Day in Israel, at 11 am, the siren will sound for two minutes nationwide calling us to stop, listen, and remember the nation's fallen troops and victims of terrorist attacks. 

Find the cost of freedom
Buried in the ground.
Mother Earth will swallow you;
Lay your body down.

It's the refrain of an old Crosby, Stills & Nash song by Steven Stills that I first heard in the early 1970s. Today, I was humming it while listening to Bob Edwards interviewing on XM radio several members of the Navy’s Third Medical Battalion, which served alongside the Third Marine Division during the Vietnam War.

For tomorrow is Memorial Day when we are called to remember and pay tribute to our service men and women, whether they died on native soil or overseas in German forests or on British coasts, in the jungles of Vietnam or atop the mountains of Afghanistan, or in the sands and urban jungles of Iraq. And while we honor those who sacrificed their lives responding to their country's call to duty, we are also called to address the forces that drive men to war.

Reworking the Crosby, Stills & Nash antiwar anthem
A couple of years ago, in Bountiful, Utah, Scott Wright crafted a video of his photos set to the folk rock supergroup's classic, "Find The Cost Of Freedom." Scott explains, "Their songs carry so much meaning. My thanks to my nephews Ben and James for letting me use their photos in this compilation, both of whom are currently active in the US military; and to my Father Warren Wright who served in WWII. I hope you will watch it in the spirit in which it was made of Peace and Love...one day we will get to the place where there is no more war...of this I am certain."

Watch the video (4:32 minutes). The lyrics are below the screen.



Daylight again,
Following me to bed.
I think about a hundred years ago,
How my fathers bled...

I think I see a valley,
covered with bones in blue.
All the brave soldiers
That cannot get older 'been
Askin' after you.

Hear the past a callin',
From Armageddon's side.
When everyone's talkin'
And no one is listenin',
How can we decide?

Do we find the cost of freedom
Buried in the ground?
Mother Earth will swallow you;
Lay your body down.
(Repeat x2)

Lay your body down...
Lay your body down....

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