Saturday, October 12, 2013

Remembrance Day and the White Poppy

The Peace Pledge Union (PPU) has a rich history in the UK.  It has been operational since 1934.  At that time it was campaigning for a world without war and took an extremely courageous stand against the horrendous bombing campaigns that were being waged in Europe during World War II (1939-1945).  The PPU is currently active in protesting the use of unmanned drone aircraft as a method of assassination, especially in Afghanistan and neighboring Pakistan.

Armistice Day was originally celebrated every year on November 11 to draw national attention to the armistice signed by Germany and the Allies that officially ended World War I.  This commemorative event is celebrated today and is now referred to as Remembrance Day as a reminder of World War II.

In 1933, the white poppy first appeared on Armistice Day. In the following year, 1934, the newly formed PPU began the widespread distribution of white poppies; it is worn by those who wish to use it as a symbol of peace and an aversion to war.  This tradition continues to this day.