Let’s face it. This has all always really been about a small group of well-spoken men with egos so fragile as to cause a psychological need to feel superior to foreigners, and who feel the tingle of approaching tumescence at the thought of a Spitfire or a body-strewn battlefield.
My Grandad was also in WWII. He lay under a truck in the desert as they were strafed with fire from above, and when the attack was over found his best friend lying dead next to him. He'd dived under the right side of it. His friend the wrong side.
He fought against his own ingrained suspicion of Germany most of his life, but was so traumatised by his experiences in North Africa and Italy that he could never talk about it, other than, on only a couple of occasions, to tell that story in only that few words.
He was a quiet man, made so by the horror of war. He was the son of an Estonian immigrant, who, due to turn-of-the-century geopolitics, had Russian papers. Despite being a British veteran, he destroyed his father's passport and papers out of fear of persecution in the Cold War.
I'm lucky that he lived with us in his final years, and I got to know him well.
He would have hated some two-bit politician spreading hatred, xenophobia and ignorance for his own political ends, as he knew that that was exactly what led to loads of his friends being slaughtered.
So fuck off Mr François. You don't get to use the wrecked or ended lives of others like this. You bring shame on your country for doing so.
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