It’s time to move on from these overblown commemorations of war,

Simon Jenkins, Guardian columnist

The airwaves have been filled this week with tearful veterans and mournful politicians recalling D-day 1944. That is appropriate when the participants are still among us and when war’s emotions are a living memory – we should thank those who fought to make us safe. Something at least can unite the British, even if it is only the past. But when the remembering is over, then what? […]

Now we risk drawing the wrong lesson from D-day: that strong alliances and massive armies are vital to defend our shores and freedoms. This was true while the cold war lasted, but since then Britain’s alliance with the US and membership of Nato has drawn it into a succession of failed interventions – as in Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya – that have nothing to do with its national security. Proxy aggressions have killed British soldiers and cost it dear, pandering to the populist belligerence of US presidents and our own prime ministers. The only lesson from them is that Nato’s utility is dwindling.[…]

It was left to Donald Trump to asks the inevitable question: why should America continue to offer Europe a nuclear shield against Russia at its own vast expense? Soviet communism is dead. Russia does not militarily threaten America any more than it threatens Britain. Yet western Europe is treating Russia much as it did Germany in the 1920s. It has pushed Nato and its nuclear shield up to Russia’s borders. It imposes on it ever harsher economic sanctions. It has driven its leader, Vladimir Putin, into an autocratic redoubt from which a restless belligerence is his natural response. Do we not remember 1918? Läs artikel