1914-2018

1914-2018

A couple of weeks ago I visited the Yser Tower. The Yser Tower is a memorial along the Belgian Yser river in Diksmuide. There have been two Yser Towers, the first was built after the First World War but it was illegally demolished with dynamite in 1946. Several years later, a new and higher tower was built on the same place. The rebuilt tower (84 m) is the highest peace monument in Europe.
The Yser Tower symbolizes the demand for “No more War””, written on the tower in the four languages of the fighting forces in the area during the First World War (1914-18). The Yser Tower site is also the burial place of some Flemish soldiers killed on the battlefield, who have become examples and heroes for Flanders.
The Yser Tower houses a museum on War, Peace, and Flemish Emancipation, that belongs to the United Nations network of peace museums.
During my visit a guide asked a group of youngsters of 10 years old if they knew where chemical weapons were used for the moment. They gave in-group immediately the right answer. Then the guide explained that during the First World War, in this region, chemical weapons were used for the first time ever in history. I realized that is was exactly 100 years ago.
Outside I took this picture in the trenches that were used in WW I.

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