A "miracle of deliverance"...that's what Winston Churchill called it. And while the evacuation of British and French troops from Dunkirk by a flotilla of largely civilian manned boats under fire from German artillery and fighter planes doesn't quite reach the genuinely miraculous heights of the Exodus across the Red Sea of the Israeites, we can easily understand why Churchill drew upon Biblical allusions to convey the significance of this momentous event. Surely, while it was not quite a miracle in the theological sense - they didn't escape by walking on the waters of the English Channel, or even through divided walls of water, and no divine intervention was immediately apparent - at the very least the extraordinary providence of God was at work for good, ensuring that the less evil side in this conflict would live to fight another day and finally be victorious.
D-Day may have changed the outcome of WWII and the course of modern history, but odds are there would not have been a D-Day without the Dunkirk evacuation.
Dunkirk: 70 years ago today.
Lest We Forget.
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It must be a peculiarly Anglo trait to turn a disastrous military defeat into a moral victory - cf Gallipoli.
Co-incidentally, I recently visited a lady who worships in one of my congregations whose late husband flew Spitfires in the Battle of Britain.