18 May 2010

They haven't forgotten

Europeans, especially eastern Europeans, honor pivotal WWII events annually. Allied troops marched into what was then Czechoslovakia in May of 1945 and, under the command of General George S. Patton, liberated the Czechs from Nazi occupation. Even though the Czechs fell under USSR domination after the war was over, they still view American forces with fondness.

The kickoff for the month’s many memorial events held around the Czech Republic for this, the 65th anniversary of the liberation, was held in Prague on Friday, April 30. There was a parade of WWII military vehicles and several dozen Czech citizens dressed in the uniforms of Allied-forces troop personnel. The parade wound its way through Prague and ended in front of the American embassy where a 1940s-style swing band was playing themed music. It wasn’t a huge event; there were perhaps 300 people in attendance. Still, it is gratifying to be an American and experience the appreciation that is still held for Americans who left their shores to defend the freedom of other peoples. It is especially welcome to those of us who serve our government in foreign countries, since there is a fair amount of anti-Americanism overseas, and we are more often on the receiving end of disrespect. The big band music was icing on the cake.

For Reflections on Nursing Leadership, published by the Honor Society of Nursing, Sigma Theta Tau International.

1 comment:

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