Poll: "Remember 'enemies' as well as soldiers", say 87%

IssueDecember 2009 - January 2010
News by Jonathan Bartley

87% of Britons agree with the statement: “Remembrance Sunday should be about marking the dead on all sides of war, not just the British”, according to a ComRes poll carried out for the Christian think tank Ekklesia at the beginning of November.

93% say they believe that, contrary to existing remembrance traditions, civilians who died in war should also be remembered.

95% say they think the main message of Remembrance Sunday should be one of peace.

When asked about the current war in Afghanistan, 53% say they feel that politicians’ treatment of people in the Armed Forces there goes against the lessons of Remembrance Day.

When Anglican archbishop Robert Runcie remembered the Argentinian dead in a service at St Paul’s cathedral he caused a political storm.

But it now appears that the overwhelming majority feel that deaths on all sides should be remembered.

The time has come for us to update our remembrance traditions, and acknowledge that we cheapen remembrance if we do not recognise the full tragedy of war for everyone, and make an active commitment to peace. If we do not, we dishonour the memory of those who died.