What with the Wisconsin election news, I forgot to include any mention of the 68th anniversary of D-Day yesterday. I can’t honor the veterans of that battle and that war any better than Dwight Eisenhower did in the quote below. I just hope we find our way to the ‘eternal peace in the world’ they sacrificed their lives, blood and youth to ensure:
“Five years before he died, General Eisenhower (who was a conquering hero at war’s end and later served two terms as America’s president) came back to Colleville-sur-Mer. It was the first, and only, time he made that journey after the war. Looking over Omaha Beach, he spoke from his heart:
“‘. . . these men came here – British and our allies, and Americans – to storm these beaches for one purpose only, not to gain anything for ourselves, not to fulfill any ambitions that America had for conquest, but just to preserve freedom. . . . Many thousands of men have died for such ideals as these. . . but these young boys. . . were cut off in their prime. . . I devoutly hope that we will never again have to see such scenes as these. I think and hope, and pray, that humanity will have learned. . . we must find some way . . . to gain an eternal peace for this world. (Eisenhower: A Soldier’s Life, by Carlo D’Este, p. 705.)’
“Decades after D-Day, even though humanity seems farther than ever from finding “some way to gain an eternal peace for this world,” everyone can agree on at least one point. Those who fought, and died, to free Europe on that day altered the course of history.”
– Excerpted from the Awesome Stories entry on the Normandy Invasion.