Help Us Celebrate Armistice Day 2023!
This year we celebrate the 105th anniversary of the signing of the World War I armistice that ceased hostilities on the Western Front, which took effect on the "eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month" of 1918. With this instrument, nations still recovering from the dreadful nightmare of WWI, one of the deadliest conflicts in human history, collectively embraced peace as a universal principle and called for an end to all wars.
Armistice Day was initially designated as “a day to be dedicated to the cause of world peace and to be thereafter celebrated." But when political conditions at the end of the “Great War” inevitably led to World War II, Armistice Day was rebranded as Remembrance Day in the Commonwealth and Veterans Day in the U.S. Stripped of its original intention, November 11 became a day identified with war instead of peace – a day for remembering yet more war dead, honoring all veterans, and glorifying militarism.
As military veterans serving the cause of world peace, Veterans For Peace is a leader in lifting up the original intention of November 11 as a day for celebrating peace. Some Veterans For Peace chapters held annual Armistice Day commemorations for years before an official Veterans For Peace resolution made it a VFP national effort in 2008. By coordinating events held across the country, we insert our call for peace into the national conversation each Veterans Day.
Clearly, a day that celebrates peace, not war, is the best way to honor the sacrifices of those who have served in war. We know the destruction war has caused and continues to cause, and we understand its senseless futility. In reclaiming November 11 as Armistice Day, we call for an end to armed conflict and recommit ourselves to the hard work of building real and lasting peace.
- Fly the VFP flag from your yard. The VFP flag comes in two sizes and has grommets, which can be easily attached to any standard pole. Order your VFP flag from the VFP store by October 30th to ensure delivery in time for November 11th.
- Download & hang the Armistice Day Sign from your window (see image in sidebar): Hang the sign from your front window, or anywhere else you feel it would be most visible to others. Click the in the sidebar to download and print!
- Distribute Armistice Day Materials. Get out in the community and spread the word! Download and print our Armistice Day half pages from the sidebar. If you cannot print them yourself, email firstname.lastname@example.org to request a bundle of materials from the VFP office. You can also order an organizer bundle here.
- Host a peace vigil with your local peace groups: Call together your members and supporters by hosting an in-person event or virtual action on Zoom. You can read the proclamation at your vigil and ring 11 bells for peace, as we do most years. Be sure to send us any photos of your action!
- Ring 11 bells for peace: Make it a community effort! Reach out to local churches, community centers, and schools to ring their bells at 11am. Here is a sample outreach letter from Chapter 27.
- Host a car caravan for peace: Pick a route and drive by your capital building or mayor's office: Call your members and supporters out together, decorate your cars and bring your VFP flags to organize a drive-by action celebrating Armistice Day as a day of peace.
- Spread the word on social media. Share the VFP Armistice Day webpage and use the sample tweets from the sidebar to spread the word!
- Send letters to the editor: Write from the heart and tell them why you’re a veteran for peace and why you celebrate Armistice Day. If your OpEd or LTE is featured, please send us the link so we can share it!
- Submit a proclamation to your city council: Reach out to your mayor, city council member, or county supervisor to create city and county proclamations in support of Armistice Day. Click here to view sample proclamation templates.
- Share the Liturgy of the Bells!: The Liturgy of the Bells is a great opportunity to reach out to local houses of worship to commemorate Armistice Day.
- Organize or take part in a nonviolent direct action to raise awareness of the impacts of militarism on climate. Visit our Stop War, Save Climate page to see how you can take action.