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May 2014 - Nr. 5
Sybille Forster-Rentmeister, Editor-in-chief

Dear Reader

This is the year in which war is being commemorated and I have been asked what we are going to do about it. Given the fact that we are a cultural publication, and not a political one, I can say that to cover all the aspects fairly and from all sides, we do not have the means.

If my personal opinion wants to be heard then I have to say that I do not see war as a solution to any problem or conflict, past or present. To me war is a catastrophe and an insanity causing nothing but human tragedy and suffering. There are no winners in a war on either side involved.

There are two books on the subject of last century’s history that I found to throw interesting data into the mix, some of which are quite different in their point of view from previous comments, some are verifying what we know, but both books expand our point of view on what war is and what leads to it. Bestselling Canadian author Margaret MacMillan, who also authored “Paris 1919”, who can be called one of the best historians of our time, wrote “The war that ended peace - The road to 1914”. The other book I can recommend is by Patrick J. Buchanan and titled “Churchill, Hitler, and the unnecessary war- How Britain lost its Empire and the West lost the world”.

These books look at history not just from a one or two country view, but look at the broad scene of world happenings, thus illuminating the backgrounds of what we often only hear as a very geographically narrow commentary. The murky waters of politics are well documented and give food for thought as to our world and the conflicts we find ourselves in now.

Having said that I would like to turn our attention to what is here and now in our area of interest. The recollections of our celebrations in the community are of importance to the collective, since few of them are covered anywhere else, if any at all. We also serve those that cannot attend anymore most of our gatherings. Let’s face it, our community is shrinking and so is the participation in events.

We shall keep our end up as long as we possibly can, but there are no predictions on how long that will be.

So in this issue you will find a hodgepodge of Easter recollections, a performance of German entertainers, an Operetta review, The Hansa Club Anniversary event and its Kinderfest, a concert or two, and a few other announcements.

We recommend that you keep an eye out for all the news an elections in the main media. I am much more concerned with creating a back yard oasis. If I remember correctly we already had warm weather much earlier and enjoyed our garden and meals outside last year. So far I have only served something outside on one day. That was a very short lived pleasure.

But I really am delighting in the strong signs of spring that have arrived, like an abundance of daffodils and the forming of tulip buds amidst their tall leaves. Every day I can observe a greener presence in shrubs and trees and the variety of shades is phenomenal, ranging from the palest of yellow green to a deep hunter green. The grass is growing and luscious. Robins abound looking for rain worms, of which there should be a lot with all that humidity falling from the sky.

The raccoons have gotten skinny, a litter hidden away somewhere, as have the squirrels. All are foraging for food trying to feed themselves and their brood. That is what mothers of all descriptions do.

Which brings me to Mother’s Day, a special occasion to commemorate and show how grateful we are to those that take care of others so lovingly. Perhaps we should extend this celebration to all those who take care for someone who needs it, not just mothers. Mothering is a universal activity that knows no gender.

So here it is: Happy Mothering Day!

Sybille Forster-Rentmeister

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As the editor of Echo Germanica Sybille reflects on cultural, artistic, political and daily events within the German-Canadian landscape.
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Sybille Forster-Rentmeister, editor, editor-in-chief of Echo Germanica, comments, cultural, artistic, political, daily events, German-Canadian, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

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