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Remembering the dead – or “poppy fascism”?


poppyThis week, hundreds of thousands of people will join the annual act of remembrance to commemorate those who have died in war, proudly wearing a poppy to honour the fallen.

However the simple flower emblem, which has been used since shortly after the end of World War One as it was the only thing to grow on the devastated battlefields of Belgium and northern France, has once again become an issue in itself.

Is the decision to not wear one an act of disrespect?

The Daily Mail newspaper is running a campaign, demanding that Premier League football teams have a poppy embroidered onto the shirts they wear this weekend. Twelve clubs initially said they would do so, but as the Mail turned its ire on those that didn’t, all bar two — Manchester United and Liverpool — have now agreed to make the gesture.

The Mail said football teams wearing the poppy sent out a “powerful message of solidarity” to Britain’s armed forces.