NDP STATEMENT ON THE 100th ANNIVERSARY OF THE BATTLE OF PASSCHENDAELE

NDP Critic for Veterans Affairs, Irene Mathyssen made the following statement:

“100 years ago,100,000 members of the Canadian Corps took part in the arduous Battle of Passchendaele. In those dark and terrifying days of World War I, they launched an attack to take back Passchendaele ridge in the region of Flanders in Belgium. The battle was long and difficult and the sacrifices were great: 4,000 Canadian soldiers were killed and almost 12,000 wounded. 

But those sacrifices were not vain. Canada won the battle and nine of our soldiers earned the Victoria Cross. Their courage helped to fortify our reputation as the best offensive fighting force on the Western Front. The crucial contributions of Canadians and their great bravery in this battle and in the First World War are still recognized to this day and deeply appreciated internationally. 

Today, New Democrats remember, with Canadians across the country, all those who fought for this hard-won victory. We remember those who lost their lives and those who came back with shattered bodies and shattered souls. We remember their exceptional courage. And we remember their families, who lost loved ones, or welcomed home a person forever changed. 

Today, 100 years later, we still honor those who proudly served our nation and who paid a terrible price to uphold the shared values of freedom and peace. 

Lest we forget.”