“And we won’t come back ’til it’s over, over there.”
Someone mentioned on another forum that today is the 100th anniversary of the United States’ entry into what would become known as World War I. I’m a little embarrassed that I forgot about this date until being reminded of it (although I’m terrible at remembering anniversaries generally, as my wife will attest), and disappointed that it’s not getting more attention in the popular media. The Great War seems almost forgotten in the public’s mind now. The last American World War I veteran, Frank Buckles, passed on in 2011 at the age of 110.
This clip is from the 1942 film, Yankee Doodle Dandy, and purports to show how George M. Cohan created the song, “Over There,” that quickly became a pop hit and rallying cry for Americans at the time. I’m sure it’s heavily fictionalized — and it conflates the United States’ declaration of war with the Lusitania sinking, although those events occurred almost two years apart — but it still gives me chills.
“And we won’t come back ’til it’s over, over there.” That was another world, wasn’t it?