Why a World War One memorial makes sense, a century later
By Leon Panetta
via the Military Times
There is an effort underway by the U.S. World War One Centennial Commission to create a national memorial to the American veterans of World War One in Washington, D.C. I firmly support this effort.
World War One is the only great war of the 20th century that doesn’t have a national memorial in the nation’s capital. That, in itself, makes it important enough for us to do everything possible to make this a reality.
But this memorial is important for a number of other reasons.
First, we have to honor those, and the memory of those, who served our country. World War One involved 5 million men and women who came together in uniform, including 2 million who went overseas and 116,516 who died in the war. We need to take the time to remember their brave sacrifices.
As defense secretary, I had the responsibility to deploy men and women in uniform to our battlefields. I was always reminded of the fact that this country is great because there are those men and women who are willing to put their lives at risk — men and women who will fight, and die, for this country. I’ve always wondered where these brave young people come from, and why they are willing to do this for us. We have to remember them, those men and women, who were willing to sacrifice so much to defend their nation.
Read the entire editorial on the Military Times web site here:
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