The Change of the Seasons
Sixty three years after D-Day the ghostly 8th Airforce bomber fields are silent, unvisited by men now too old to make the pilgrimage. Across the green counties, "Muhammad is now second only to Jack as the most popular name for baby boys in Britain and is likely to rise to No 1 by next year, a study by The Times has found." The twenty first century was widely predicted to be the century of Europe. For those who are interested such cheerful titles as Why Europe Will Run the 21st Century, United States of Europe : The Superpower No-One Talks About, and The European Dream: How Europe's Vision of the Future Is Quietly Eclipsing the American Dream are all available from Amazon, reminders of how the world can change so quickly. There was this dream, but history had other plans.
Once it was possible to talk of the continuity of centuries. Hitler was going to build his twisted thousand-year Reich. Across the Channel an embattled Winston Churchill looked back across Britain's centuries and spoke too, of a thousand years.
But if we fail, then the whole world, including the United States, including all that we have known and cared for, will sink into the abyss of a new Dark Age made more sinister, and perhaps more protracted, by the lights of perverted science. Let us therefore brace ourselves to our duties, and so bear ourselves that, if the British Empire and its Commonwealth last for a thousand years, men will still say, "This was their finest hour."
It was. Sixty three years was a good run.
And did those feet in ancient time
Walk upon England's mountains green?
And was the holy Lamb of God
On England's pleasant pastures seen?
And did the Countenance Divine
Shine forth upon our clouded hills?
And was Jerusalem builded here
Among these dark Satanic mills?
Bring me my bow of burning gold:
Bring me my arrows of desire:
Bring me my spear: O clouds unfold!
Bring me my chariot of fire.
I will not cease from mental fight,
Nor shall my sword sleep in my hand
Till we have built Jerusalem
In England's green and pleasant land.