Here is President Trump’s speech at the D-Day 75th anniversary memorial in Normandy:
And here is a write-up of the festivities, complete with many must-see photos.
(The following is an updated essay that has traditionally run on the anniversary of D-Day. We run it to remind our readers of what D-Day was all about, and of the enormity of the sacrifice made by those soldiers to free Europe from the scourge of Nazism.)
On June 6th, 1944, 156,000 Allied troops stormed the beaches at Normandy. And so we officially mark today as the 75th anniversary of D-Day, the massive Allied invasion that turned back the Nazi sweep of Europe in World War II. But it was called “The Longest Day” for more reasons than one. This wasn’t the kind of battle that ends at sundown.
A 50-mile stretch of the French coast had been divided into five sectors that Allied commanders planned to take separately, and then join. But by the end of the first day, only two had been joined. It took six more days of intense fighting before the entire beach was unified under Allied control. And that was just the toehold to begin the long march across Europe.
There were at least 10,000 Allied casualties on D-Day, and tens of thousands more wounded. Among those who survived, there are fewer each year who are still alive to tell the tale. One soldier who landed on Omaha Beach that day, James Gabaree of the 5th Ranger Battalion, said he and his fellow soldiers were young when they went over there, but they came back as old men, if they came back at all.
I’ve walked on those beaches and stood at attention at the flag ceremony in the US cemetery in Normandy. Few moments have caused me to reflect more soberly on the sacrifice of those brave men than to see the thousands of graves lined up ever so neatly in the well-kept cemetery.
There was nothing neat or orderly on June 6, 1944. It was pure, deadly chaos. But despite a hale of gunfire coming at them, those brave soldiers kept coming off those boats and moving forward. They did their duty to liberate Europe from Hitler and his war machine. Looking back at age 91, D-Day veteran Jacob Cutler of Long Island told Newsday, with the humility typical of the Greatest Generation, “We were 19, 20, 21 years old, kids sent to war. But we did the job.”
Once the heroes of World War II are no longer here to tell their inspiring stories, it’s up to us to preserve them, to read them to our kids and pass them on to future generations. Americans must never forget their incredible courage and sacrifice in saving the world from one of the greatest evils mankind ever faced.
If you can’t make it all the way to France to pay your respects to the heroes of D-Day, then consider taking your family to the National World War II Museum in New Orleans. You can learn more at www.NationalWW2Museum.org.
One reason that so much attention is being focused on this year’s 75th anniversary of D-Day is that it’s feared it will be the last landmark anniversary for which many surviving veterans will be alive or in good enough health to travel to France to be honored.
On the other hand, I wouldn’t be too quick to discount the ability of the veterans of D-Day to overcome the heaviest odds. There’s a reason they’re known as “the Greatest Generation.” Like Tom Rice, who parachuted into Normandy with the U.S. Army's 101st Airborne Division on D-Day and landed safely, despite a German bullet ripping through his parachute…and who helped kick off the 75th anniversary ceremonies on Thursday by recreating that dive at the age of 97.
Tom worked with a physical trainer for six months to prepare for the tandem dive. If anyone’s laying odds on whether he’ll recreate it again on the 80th anniversary at 102, I would not bet against him.
Click the link to see video and photos of this amazing American hero.
We often hear that one leftist hobby horse or another is the “moral equivalent of war.” Just this week, Sen. Elizabeth Warren declared that combating climate change is a “bigger challenge than World War II.” These are the kind of clueless pronouncements that are often made by people who have zero experience or understanding of what it took to fight World War II.
At this link, Stephen Green takes a fascinating look at the seemingly impossible logistics of pulling off the D-Day Invasion, and keeping it a secret (today, it would be blared all over social media, giving the Germans plenty of advance warning.)
As Green notes, just to prepare for D-Day required the equivalent of secretly moving every resident of a medium-sized city – along with all the food, beverages, fuel, vehicles and weapons needed for days of battle – anywhere from 30 to 125 miles in a few hours, by air and heavy seas in foul weather, under enemy fire. And that was just to get them to the point where the battle would start.
That’s only the beginning of Green’s account of the overwhelming logistics nightmare that was necessary to overcome to launch the D-Day invasion, liberate Europe from the Nazis and stop Russia from taking over from the east. Read it and think about it the next time someone claims that one liberal program or another is the “moral equivalent of World War II.”
When you ponder the sheer enormity of the D-Day operation, it’s easy to lose sight of the individuals. This is a must-read article that brings home what it was like from the standpoints of two soldiers. Both willingly made great sacrifices to save the world from totalitarian evil. One hero made it home; the other did not.
Media outlets may huff(po) and puff about President Trump’s blasting of “fake news,” but a lot of Americans agree with him. A new survey by Pew Research found that Americans view made-up “fake news” as a bigger threat than terrorism, climate change or illegal immigration.
I don’t know if I’d go that far (which doesn’t mean the poll is fake news), but it’s definitely a problem. Here's yet another example: how many Democratic Presidential candidates are claiming that most Americans couldn't handle an emergency that cost $400? You guessed it: fake stat.
Most fake anti-Trump news is fueled by the kind of rabid partisanship that leads every reporter to swallow any negative story, no matter how suspicious, or seize on any possible anti-Trump spin to a story while ignoring the bigger picture. And yes, “fake news” can have really bad consequences, even beyond the way that it misinforms the public, undermines respect for the President, and gins up anger and divisiveness.
For instance, over the weekend, I noted that many top US media outlets, including the New York Times…
…were repeating a claim from a South Korean newspaper that North Korean dictator Kim Jong-Un had executed his top nuclear negotiator for failing to reach a deal with President Trump. This story, if true, could have resulted in an end to nuclear disarmament talks, discrediting of our President internationally, and more dangerous turmoil in Asia. But in my comments, I pointed out that the story was far-fetched and made little logical sense (admittedly, Kim often doesn’t, either), that the source had been wrong before, and (quoting myself), this “would be like (Kim) aiming his entire firing squad at his own foot” and “until it’s verified, let’s bear in mind that the US isn’t the only place that has ‘fake news.’”
Well, it appears that the nose for avoiding cow droppings that I developed growing up in a rural environment still works. Several days after that report appeared, the official who was allegedly executed was photographed sitting five seats away from Kim at a concert.
I hope that incidents like this, and the new Pew poll, will convince media outlets to clean up their acts and get back to aiming for objective, fact-based reporting instead of biased, badly-sourced attack pieces. However, I predict that tomorrow’s New York Times headline will read, “North Korea Defies Trump by Creating Zombie Army.”
Democrats claim there’s no illegal immigration crisis at the border...and they say Trump is mentally unfit for his job? Customs and Border Protection just reported that in May alone, there were 144,258 apprehensions at the border, and those are just the ones who were caught.
For comparison sake: the number of troops who invaded France on D-Day and turned the tide of World War II in Europe was 156,000.
Speaking of “fake news,” no news is faker than polls taken two years before an election. Yet we’re already seeing polls claiming that Joe Biden would destroy Trump in 2020. One even claimed that Joe has a four-point lead in Texas! Are they the same pollsters who told us Hillary had an 11-point lead in 2016?
But just in case there is anyone out there who seriously is longing for the good old days of Obama-Biden policies, when serious, sober liberal politicians presided over American decline with stately dignity, here’s a reminder of exactly what that era was like. It also proves that the current boom in job creation and rising wages is NOT merely a holdover of their policies.
Steve Straub at TheFederalistPapers.org put together in one graphic a collection of charts showing various economic conditions under Obama-Biden, including student loan debt, health care costs, median family income, home ownership and more. Note that everything you’d hope to see going up dropped like a rock, and everything we want to see go down shot up.
Now comes Joe Biden, offering to take us back to those wonderful days when smug elitists chortled at the very idea of manufacturing jobs ever coming back and the most patriotic thing about the entire Administration was the way food stamp enrollment shot up like a rocket on the Fourth of July.
Look, I understand that Trump’s Administration can be a rough ride at times (although all the blame for that usually falls on Trump, and none on the bitter leftists who constantly throw obstacles into his path.) But I find that when you really press people on what Trump has done that’s supposedly so bad, they can only come up with two things. They either quote horrible stories about him that are pure fake news, or else they complain about his brutal Twitter tweets.
Well, if the choice is between more jobs, rising wages, and putting America first or going back to the days of an economy stuck in quicksand and declining American prestige and sovereignty, then I’d suggest simply turning off Twitter. How do people even have time to read all those tweets anyway? Since Trump took office, everyone has a job again!