Messages from “Dunkirk”

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The superb new movie “Dunkirk” conveys important messages about a fateful episode of World War II.

In May, 1940, the rapid Nazi advance through France trapped a huge British army on the coast, offering easy targets for Luftwaffe bombers. The Royal Navy couldn’t rescue the troops from the beaches, so the government rallied civilian craft-fishing boats, ferries, and pleasure cruisers. Some 650 “little ships” helped take more than 300,000 troops safely home. This miraculous evacuation exemplified “The Dunkirk Spirit,” where private initiative saves the nation in a crisis.

Watching this thrilling movie, American citizens should find our “Dunkirk Spirit” to help our country overcome present dangers. We should also recall the example of the new Prime Minister in 1940, who inspired his countryman after Dunkirk by pledging “we shall never surrender.” Churchill’s words remind us that our politics need not remain tawdry and petty, and can rise once again to grandeur and nobility.

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  1. kemper  •  Jul 22, 2017 at 1:10 pm

    I've just read a book about Dunkirk (Dunkirk), based on interviews, correspondence and government files that had been kept classified 'til long after it happened. Despite the successful rescue of thousands and thousands of troops, the extreme incompetence, malpractice, calculated betrayals, dishonor and dishonest of most major players that was covered up to buck up morale is also a story worth telling.

    We're still pretending that the Crusades were justifiable and righteous Holy War, disregarding the Jews and Orthodox Bysantians who were righteously slaughtered by our Holy Warriors. We can't afford to embrace delusions that God's on our side, that our might makes us right, and that it's heroic to bumble into military adventures abroad that are none o' our beeswax and we're unwiling to fight honorably or win.

    Clinton and his underlings denied commanders on the scene the armor they required for the safey of their troops and anyh hope of success, which set the stage for Black Hawk Down, which may have been a desperately heroic adventure to see in the theater, but was primarily an example of what total f'in' idiots Bill Clinton and his crew were.

    The French valiantlyh defended the Dunkirk perimeter for several days while Brits who'd committed to aid in the defense were concentrating entirely on escape. When the cause became futile and leaders agreed to rescue French and British soldiers in equal numbers, some Brits sent thousands of Frogs down the beach to non-existent departure points so that only Brits could board. Other Brits simply denied French soldiers who were lined up as agreed to join the evacuation.

    I'm no expert but I believe most of this latter day revealtion of what happened based on original sources, before what had happened was understood, and after the need to cover up the outrageous, true story orchurn out fairy tales to inspire Brit civilians.
    Small boats picking up soldiers off dangerous beaches were a major part of the story, but tens of thousands escaped off the East Mole, and as many more could have if war prephad been competent, the RAF hadn't stayed hoime (I!), and the allies had cooperated, and been forthright, honset and honorable with each other.
    Do the research and tell us the real story, Mr. History-boy Medved!

    • AARON SCHULTZ  •  Jul 22, 2017 at 4:29 pm

      What is more effective at inspiring the good? Should we focus our attention on those who fail or act selfishly, or should we keep our minds refreshed with examples of bravery and honor?

      It's easy to overlook of the good when we are obsessed with the lamenting of the bad.

    • AARON SCHULTZ  •  Jul 22, 2017 at 4:31 pm

      What is more effective at inspiring the good? Should we focus our attention on those who fail or act selfishly, or should we keep our minds refreshed with examples of bravery and honor?

      It's easy to overlook the good when we are obsessed with the lamenting of the bad.

      • AARON SCHULTZ  •  Jul 22, 2017 at 4:31 pm

        Sorry about the double submit.

  2. Rizzo  •  Jul 23, 2017 at 10:59 am

    Aaron… you are exactly right!
    I'm a big fan. Keep up the good work!

  3. John Boland  •  Jul 24, 2017 at 11:43 am

    This is an expensive OK movie….but "great" or "a masterpiece"….not for me. There are too many BOMBS going off and the sound was TOO LOUD in the theater…for me. I'd rather READ about the noble event in a book.

  4. John H. Perry, Jr.  •  Aug 3, 2017 at 4:16 pm

    I enjoyed the movie Dunkirk though there were some scenes that confused me ( the one of soldiers hiding in the beached boat is one ).
    My father – African-American- served in World War Two.
    That's a part of history rarely told.
    Dunkirk wasn't as exciting as Hacksaw Ridge but the underlying messsge of non combatants helping rescue their countrymen is inspiring.
    We need that level of commitment to our fellow Americans.

  5. Ross Williams  •  Aug 4, 2017 at 7:38 pm

    Why not include 30 minutes in the film showing what the Germans were thinking when they stopped and gave the British troops time to evacuate? The movie seemed short so there was time for the German point of view.

  6. Paul Rodriguez  •  Aug 24, 2017 at 5:12 pm

    I used to live in San Jose,California . My sister worked at City Hall . They have all
    these cultural exhibits in the hallways as you go in. It also has a statue of Christopher
    Columbus. I heard on the news this morning that a group of loons [ most likely from the left]
    are demanding the removal of the Columbus statue? Then I heard that in NEWYORK , City
    That loon or schmuck of a mayor Bill deblasio , not only wants to have the statue of Columbus
    removed? , but all statues he considers offensive?. What's next? Is he going to rename the
    the state, because the duke of York tricked the Indians out of the land?
    Lol Paul.

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