Thoughts written on D Day + 60, 6 June 2004.
A War Waged to Defeat Evil
DR. CLAUDE E. NEWBURY
The day marking the 60th anniversary of D Day was magnificent. The blessed light of day sparkled and danced along the little waves that washed up on those beaches where on this day 60 years ago 2,500 allied soldiers had died in battle. Here on 6 June 1944, sometimes called "The Longest Day", the greatest armada ever assembled put ashore an Allied army whose objective was to liberate Europe from the Nazis.
During the television programs that marked the anniversary of that fateful day, broadcast from those very beaches where that army had landed, many old soldiers recounted their experiences. What clearly was uppermost in their minds, were the memories of how so many of their friends and companions had been killed. How Omaha beach was covered in the blood from the American dead and wounded, who in several spots lay heaped up in piles. Cut down in the prime of life by the withering fire rained down upon them by a fiercely determined enemy. That day, 340 British soldiers were killed in battle; the Americans lost 1465.
Very few old soldiers wanted to speak about their own brave acts on that day so long ago, but they relived and recounted the sadness of the appalling loss of life. During the television commentary historical details were given of how finally, despite appalling loss of life, the Allies managed to gain a precarious foothold a short way inland. A foothold from whence, in a long process of total war, they would break out to eventually defeat the enemy and, in so doing, uphold and restore civilisation.
Civilisation based on respect for the life and the worth of each person. This in contrast to the Nazis who had established, by terror, brutality and force of arms, a religion of death on the mainland of Europe, where people were slaughtered by the millions simply because they did not fit the arbitrary criteria of being fully human - people classified by the Nazis as "Untermensch".
In the beautiful American and British cemeteries just inland from those beaches, lay those killed on D-Day. It was in those cemeteries that civic and military leaders of the New Europe and of the USA came to honour the dead. To honour those who had sacrificed their lives to defeat evil, so that others could live in peace and dignity.
The television programs were profoundly moving. Time and again, tears glistened on the cheeks of those who had gathered to honour their fallen relatives, friends and comrades. Many old soldiers were shown and some were interviewed, their chests covered with the medals that they had won that day and in the days and months that followed, until the total defeat of the Nazis. They, and the families of the fallen, spent much time looking for names of their loved ones and friends on the white crosses in the cemeteries and in standing silently and reverently next to their graves, moistening the turf that covered the fallen with their tears.
The scenes shown were incredibly beautiful; the vivid battle colours of the renowned regiments who had fought that day, waving in the gentle breeze; everywhere the red, white and blue of the Union Jack, The Stars and Stripes and the Tricolour; the blue sky; the green grass and trees; the bright shiny sea; the astonishing beauty and variety of human faces and voices; the colours of the flowers in the wreaths and floral tributes laid down to honour the dead; the occasional glimpses of distant church steeples in and around the pretty little town of Arromanches, now fully restored from the ruin it had suffered that Longest Day; regimental badges and insignia glinting in the glorious sunlight. The pulse-racing sound of military bands playing national anthems, hymns and regimental marches; the heartbreaking bagpipe laments; the snowy-white wakes of warships cruising offshore and the thunder of war-planes flashing overhead added immensely to the emotional impact.
These and many other sights and sounds constituted a day to remember, but, for all its powerful impact these sights and sounds were weak and pale – almost insignificant - in comparison to the blood-curdling sights and sounds of that Longest Day, 60 years ago. A day when the waves were tinged with blood and the beaches were stacked with torn broken bodies and convulsed limbs, and the air was filled with the stench of war and the groans, cries and prayers of the dying. A day on which honour, duty, courage and determination reigned supreme.
Then there were the speeches of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, President Chirac and President Bush. Speeches packed with noble words and ideals such as honour, sacrifice, goodness, bravery, morality, civilised standards, freedom, courage, justice, life, liberty. Speeches filled with admiration and gratitude for those who had risked, and, in so many cases, had offered up their lives to liberate Europe from the Nazis. Eulogising those who had made the ultimate sacrifice of life itself. The words of Our Blessed Lord leapt into my soul, "Greater love hath no man, than to lay down his life for his friends".
In her speech, Queen Elizabeth II, in calm and beautifully articulated phrases and clear diction, paid tribute to the Allied soldiers, sailors and airmen, and especially to those of the British Commonwealth, who had fought and died to liberate Europe from Nazi rule. She talked of the terrible price that had been paid and about the alliesí profound conviction of the right of their struggle when striking a blow for freedom. She referred to D-Day as "one of the proudest moments in our long national history", "a day on which the hopes and prayers of liberty loving peoples everywhere" had been with the armed forces.
While she talked, and during the historical flashbacks from the war archives which were shown during the many hours of the memorial service - flashbacks that time and again revealed the horror and slaughter of that day on which 2,500 Allied men died - I could not help thinking of another war, and of the horrible slaughter of that other ongoing relentless and merciless war. A global war waged hour by hour against totally helpless, innocent human beings. A war waged, not on renowned beaches named Gold, Juno, Sword, Omaha, and Utah, but in hospitals and clinics of the United States of America, England, Scotland, Wales, Canada and all the countries of Europe with the sole exceptions of Ireland and Malta. A war that encompasses in its flood of blood and satanic cruelty not only Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and many other Commonwealth countries, but also a host of other countries around the world such as China, Japan, India. A war that is defended and promoted in particular by the media, the intelligentsia, secular humanists, radical feminists and sexual libertines; a war on totally innocent, totally defenceless unborn children; a war known as Abortion.
It is a war in which countless millions of unborn children are torn limb from limb, where they are sucked asunder by powerful machines, cut up by sharpened surgical knives known as curettes, pickled alive by strong salt solutions, poisoned by modern chemical weapons, powerful hormones, and ejected from the womb by intrauterine devices. Slaughtered by devilishly clever weapons and instruments of destruction, devised in the sparkling cleanliness of University and pharmaceutical laboratories, true weapons of mass destruction, freely promoted and everywhere available for use against them – a merciless and brutal war in the womb! There, those innocents are ruthlessly struck at and murdered. A frenzy of murder endorsed by Parliaments, Governments, Supreme Courts, and most shockingly of all, even by leaders of many churches and religions.
It is a war where the sheer loss of life, and dimensions of relentless and cold-blooded cruelty and brutality easily dwarf the slaughter of the First and Second World Wars; a war in which the blood of unborn children killed by abortion could easily flood the fields of red poppies, those fabled Flanders Fields "where poppies blow between the crosses, row on row"; a war waged in the womb, right below the beating hearts of their mothers; a war in which the womb, previously considered the safest place in the world for a human being to be, is now in view of the sheer numbers slaughtered there, the most dangerous place for human life.
In the war on unborn children in the UK, more than 500 children are killed each day, exceeding the 340 British soldiers killed in storming Hitlerís Atlantic Wall in Normandy. Now in "Englandís green and pleasant land", on average, every second woman of reproductive age has had an abortion. In the USA each day 4,000 preborn children are slaughtered, vastly exceeding the loss of 1465 Americans on Omaha and Utah beaches that D Day in 1944.
In this silent and unspeakably evil holocaust, the once noble medical profession alone, in one year, kills an estimated 70,000,000 preborn children by surgical abortions. More in one year than the total number of human lives lost in the whole duration of the Second World War, not just on the beaches of Normandy; but also in the Remagen Forest; the Battle of the Bulge; Auschwitz; Belsen; Buchenwald; Dachau; Pearl Harbour; Midway; the Coral Sea; Leyte Gulf; Iwo Jima; Hiroshima and Nagasaki and everywhere else washed by that monstrous tide of blood and gore called the Second World War. This staggering number of unborn children slaughtered does not include those untold millions who die as the result of birth-control drugs and devices.
Duplicity and wickedness
Listening to the noble words and sentiments expressed by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, I remembered with dismay and shame that she, in 1968, had signed the law permitting and initiating the slaughter of unborn children in this country. A law which since its passage, has resulted in more than 6 million unborn children being murdered in the UK alone, apart from those children who were sacrificed in the many Commonwealth Countries who, following the evil example of the motherland, introduced the killing of the unborn into their own countries. I remembered the sickening contradiction of the Queenís role and title as Head of the Church of England and Defender of the Faith.
Vividly in my mind I saw the wholesale murder of unborn children in France. Surgical abortions and untold numbers of very young human beings killed there and around the world by the abortifacient actions of "the pill" and RU486, the infamous French "Do-It-Yourself Abortion Pill", endorsed by the illustrious Members of the Academy Francais. These terrible realities occupied my thoughts during President Chiracís long and eloquent speech.
When President Bush spoke, I realised that only he, of the three heads of state who spoke that day, had any moral authority to speak of noble deeds and of goodness and honour, valour and civilisation. For, of the three heads of state who uttered noble words and phrases that day, only he had done something to try to limit the slaughter of unborn children. He had also cut off US Government funds to International Agencies and organisations who work tirelessly to promote the slaughter of unborn children around the world, organisations such as International Planned Parenthood Federation and, in England, the Marie Stopes Foundation and Brook Advisory which are registered as British Charities.
Is evil defeated? Is freedom, liberty, justice and peace now prevalent in Europe, the United Kingdom, USA, Canada? Are basic human rights upheld? Is there an atmosphere in these countries of moral goodness? With profound sadness and a numbing sense of horror the answer is No! The wickedness of the present state of the world is overwhelming. The most basic of all human rights, namely the right to life, is disregarded when preborn human beings are considered.
Even that unspeakable surgical operation in which a doctor perforates the skull of a baby while it is in the very process of being born and sucks out its brains to shrink its skull has been vigorously defended, most notably by President Clinton after the US Congress voted repeatedly to ban it. Mother Teresa of Calcutta once said, "How can there be peace in the world if a mother can kill her own baby in her own womb? There will never be peace in the world until there is peace in the womb."
In world famous University Hospitals, doctors, day after day, slaughter unborn children; harvest their organs and tissues for scientific purposes; remove parts of their brains to further research into Alzheimerís disease and other neurological illnesses and to implant into the brains of adults who suffer from these conditions. Their little corpses are discarded along with the other biological waste of the hospital to be incinerated or ground up finely by the garbage disposal units in hospital sluice rooms prior to flushing this "foetal waste" into the sewers.
Instead of the past ghastly images of smoking chimneys in the Nazi death camps darkening the sky with the incinerated particles of helpless and defenceless adults, there is nowadays no notice taken of the corpses of aborted babies incinerated, morsellated or dumped in the biological trash of hospitals and clinics. This new holocaust is overlooked. The highly protected "right to choose" and "reproductive right" to kill unborn children has turned the womb into a bloody tomb. It has turned hospitals and clinics, where abortions are performed, into antiseptic human abattoirs, and doctors and nurses who perform abortions, into trained professional assassins. It has turned women who procure abortions, into walking graveyards. All so very normal now.
The horrible spectre of the Angel of Death of Auschwitz, Dr. Joseph Mengele, is not associated with this modern slaughter. It has been estimated that in his whole career in Auschwitz, Dr. Mengele had personally killed six people, a toll of death easily surpassed in one morningís operating list by gynaecologists who perform abortions. I remembered those films of Nazi doctors studying how captives froze to death in ice-cold water and compared this to doctors keeping tiny human beings in the indescribable cold of liquid nitrogen. Then, Dr. Mengele and his ghoulish death squad experimenting on captive adults: now, honoured and feted doctors experimenting on helpless human embryos. Is evil really defeated in the post-Nazi world? The atrocity trials at Nuremberg are now replaced by international fame and prizes for the present experimenters.
Silence: hostility: expediency
Yet on the surface all looks so normal. Living standards have never been so good. Food is plentiful, the shops are filled with happy shoppers. An astonishing variety of sports and other amusements occupies the free time of modern people. Sexuality has been liberated from the shackles of the Catholic Church. Recreational sex is the norm.
Abortions and birth control drugs, pills and devices are freely available. "Children by choice and not by chance" is the cry. The unintended conception of a child is considered "a contraceptive failure" which can easily be corrected by simply "terminating the pregnancy" or "evacuating the uterine contents", or getting rid of the "products of conception", or by "menstrual extraction".
I remembered the words of The Lord of Life when He said, "whatever you do to the least of my brethren you do unto me" and "whoever harms one of these little ones, it would be better for that man to have had a millstone tied around his neck and been cast into the depths of the sea, it would have been better for him had he never been born."
Very rarely, from the pulpits of the declining number of churches attended by diminishing congregations, is the mortal evil of abortion even mentioned. Instead, feel-good sermons, saturated with justice and peace ideology and anguish for the victims of violence in parts of the world far removed from England, France and the USA; concern about the economy and environment, homelessness and poverty; and deep revulsion at "intolerance" are preached. Invariably, the fundamental injustice of killing unborn children is carefully avoided. Pro-life organisations and initiatives are largely ignored by the clergy and churchgoers.
The dire warnings, prophetic words and profound Encyclicals of the Vicars of Christ concerning life issues are usually considered puzzling, even repulsive remnants of medievalism. Despite the preaching of Pope John Paul II in his struggle to defend life throughout his long pontificate of over 25 years - who described our present situation as "a culture of death" - most Catholics have never even heard of, let alone read, Humanae Vitae and Evangelium Vitae.
I once heard that noble defender of life, Rev. Fr. Paul Marx, describe Humanae Vitae and Evangelium Vitae as "the best kept secrets in the Catholic Church". Pro-life rallies and protests draw weak and feeble support from church-going people. Those who understand the evil of birth-control, abortion and euthanasia are seen as extremists from whom decent people need to distance themselves. The protests and words of pro-lifers are seen as violent, controversial, offensive and deeply divisive, certainly not the kind of behaviour that should be condoned, or even less, supported. Pictures showing the bloodied, torn remains of aborted babies are strictly censored and on the rare occasions that they are seen are met with hostility towards those showing them, and towards the pro-life movement; averted gazes; accusations of "insensitivity" or trying to "put women on guilt-trips"; or charges of public indecency and disturbance of the public peace. Rarer still is anything said by Christian leaders about the intrinsic evil of contraception and nothing is said about the abortive nature of many of the so-called "contraceptives" such as "the pill" and the intrauterine device.
On the Wednesday prior to the Normandy Memorial Day, the BBC interviewed George Carey, ex-Archbishop of Canterbury. The occasion was the publication of his memoirs. He talked about many things of a temporal nature and during his long interview, any mention he might have made of eternal things totally escaped me. However, his most shocking statement came when he said that the Anglican Church – the Established Church of England - is, and must remain, "a pragmatic church". For him and his church, no moral absolutes, no fundamental principles and beliefs, no Ten Commandments - expediency rules all.
Fight for life!
So, in review of that day which marked the 60th anniversary of the Normandy Landings, we must emulate the courage and determination of the allied soldiers who fought and died to overcome Nazism, the greatest evil of that time. Now, an even greater and more insidious evil is prevalent. Now, a godless and secular humanist society is rampant, but we are called by God to restore all things in Christ.
Like those brave men of 60 years ago, we must resolutely and untiringly oppose the culture of death, secure in the knowledge that we are on the side of the Angels and Saints and that Godís infinite power is with us. Secure in the knowledge that "if God is with us, who can be against us". Secure in the protection of the Most Holy Virgin Mother of Our Divine Redeemer and of Holy St. Joseph, the Terror of Demons.
Like those brave men of long ago, let us closely engage in combat the enemy, "the great Dragon …the ancient serpent, he who is called the Devil and Satan, who leads astray the whole world".
Let us remember that failure to defend "the sanctity of human life" is "rank cowardice in the face of the enemy". To betray the unborn, slaughtered by abortion, and the handicapped and aged, subject to "mercy killing" in the prevalent "culture of death", is treasonable betrayal of Our Monarch, The Eternal One, Creator of Life and Lord of the Universe.
On the contrary, to defend life will in due course be infinitely and eternally rewarded by the Lord of Life Himself.