Peter Jackson's They Shall Not Grow Old is a stunning act of remembrance

Everyone raised in my hometown learned to recite In Flanders Fields in school. Every year, as November 11th, Remembrance Day, drew near, we were taught about the First World War. We made poppies. We prepared for a concert to honor our veterans. Elderly men with often vacant, watery eyes would visit our classrooms and talk to us about their time overseas. Sometimes they cried. Other times, they laughed as they talked about long absent friends and their lost youth. As I grew older, I marched in my town's annual Remembrance Day parade: first as an cadet and later in a different uniform. Each year as we gathered at the armory after the parade had ended, there were fewer survivors of the First and Second World War there to greet us. Decades have passed since those days. The men and women who served their fellows and the future generations that would become of them have largely passed on.

No matter where I am in the world, I take pause on November 11th, as many others do, to remember those that gave up their lives in the name of democracy and decency. I try to hold the millions that died from hate, xenophobia and greed. I give thanks that I am now too old and too broken to fight. I fear for those in uniform today that will see things that will never leave them and for those who deployed who will never come home.Amidst these meditations, I wonder over who will carry the torch of remembrance of wars and atrocities past, once those who survived them are no more. Read the rest

Leggings inspired by dazzle camouflage

No one will doubt your commitment to Sparkle Motion in Standard Rainbow's leggings. Their geometric patterns are inspired by the "dazzle camouflage," the experimental paint jobs used on World War I battleships to confuse enemy submarine gunners.

P.S. There are also totebags.

Previously: "Dazzle camouflage" on BB

Congrats, Evan Wagoner-Lynch!

USS Nebraska image via Wikipedia (public domain), totes image via Standard Rainbow Read the rest

Pretend cities to fool bombers through history

Starting with a fake Paris built to lure Kaiser Bill's incendiary bombs, through to the pretend industrial towns used in WWII England to divert 900 tonnes of munitions, to the pretend airbases built in the Pacific Northwest and through to the Viet Cong's pretend villages to disguise tunnel complexes. Read the rest

UK cultural institutions leave their WWI cases empty to protest insane copyright

They want the term of copyright changed to life plus 70 years, instead of 2039 for unpublished works of uncertain date, a standard that makes it impossible to reproduce or display things like letters home from the front. Read the rest

Rare footage of the 1914 Martian conflict

The History Channel's created a bizarre secret history of a war against Martian invaders that's an allegory for WWI. The accompanying video has a spooky resonance and plausibility that is not to be missed. Read the rest

Exclusive: Joe Sacco's The Great War, documentary on the creation of an extraordinary graphic history

Joe Sacco is a spectacular political comics creator, and has earned a well-deserved reputation for his work on war and conflict with books on Sarajevo and Bosnia, Gaza and Palestine and other modern militarized zones.

But now he's created The Great War, a wordless, gate-folded work on World War One. It's gorgeous and haunting, and beautifully presented in a slipcased hardcover. His publisher, WW Norton, prepared a short documentary on the book and we've got it exclusively (for now). I hope you enjoy it as much as I have. Read the rest

Fate and the archaeologist

Some archaeologists get to discover Tutankhamun's tomb. Others go down in history for finding Kaiser Wilhelm's urinal. (Via A blog about history and Cort Sims) Read the rest