Vimy Ridge marked Canada’s birth as a nation, G-G says on 95th aniversary of battle
The Battle of Vimy Ridge marked “the birth of a nation” for Canada, says Governor-General David Johnston.
Johnston and a Canadian delegation of politicians and 5,000 students gathered at the Canadian National Vimy Memorial in France Monday afternoon to commemorate the 95th anniversary of the surprising and striking victory for Canada’s military.
The brutal Easter Monday battle killed more than 3,500 Canadians and wounded scores more, according to Veterans Affairs Canada, but was a turning point for the Allies in the First World War and a key moment in Canada’s military identity.
“In many ways it was the birth of a nation. It was the first time Canadians fought together shoulder to shoulder,” Johnston told Postmedia News Monday from Vimy, France. “Not as a subordinate unit in the British army, but on our own.” (Photos: Pascal Rossignol/Reuters)
French shooter Mohamed Merah jumps to death in a hail of bullets
A self-proclaimed al-Qaeda militant died in a hail of bullets on Thursday as he jumped out of an apartment window at the end of a 32-hour siege in southern France.
Mohamed Merah, the main suspect in a wave of shootings that killed seven people, had tried to blast his way out of the siege in the city of Toulouse after members of an elite force known as RAID entered his flat.
But Interior Minister Claude Gueant said the 23-year-old had been found dead on the ground in a dramatic end to the lengthy standoff.
“He expressed no regret apart from not having had enough time to kill more victims and even boasted of having brought France to its knees.” (Photo: PASCAL PAVANI/AFP/Getty Images)