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Photographer's Note

THE SORROW OF FLANDERS

There's a saying that if countries want to fight a war, they do it in Flanders. The low country at the crossroads of (western) Europe has seen countless wars, some of them involving Flanders itself, others between France, England, Germany and whoever felt like fighting it out. Travelling in (western) Flanders is travelling through through battlefields.

There's no cycling or walking in Flanders without war cemetries or other reminders of the senseless slaughter that was the Great War, or First World War (1914-1918).

THIS PICTURE was shot on a countryside road near Diksmuide. The black tower in the distance is the Ijzertoren, a huge monument built for the (Flemish) victims of the Great War.

THE "IJZERTOREN" (Yzer Tower) is not only a symbol of the futility of war, it is also an icon of Flemish nationalism and anti-Belgium sentimentalism. Over the years, sometimes the tower leaned more towards anti-war, then towards anti-Belgium, then more towards anti-war again. Whatever, it has always been a powerful symbol of the sorrow of Flanders.

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song title reference: Bob Dylan

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Additional Photos by Benny Verbercht (BennyV) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2810 W: 35 N: 5717] (30480)
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