WASHINGTON, Nov. 10, 2010 — Across our Nation tomorrow, we honor those who have served so nobly in uniform, selflessly defending and protecting America’s promise throughout our history.
But that same history teaches us that peace does not preserve itself. It demands effort and pain and sacrifice. It also requires generations of young men and women, willing to deploy to the far ends of the earth to, as one memorial puts it, defend countries “they never knew and a people they never met.”
Today, a new generation of GI’s has deployed to far-off places and defend people they did not know. War has bloodied them. Loss has tempered them. Great families have sustained them.
Through it all, they have emerged the most resilient, combat-ready force I have seen in my four decades of service. And yet, they continue to look to veterans past — their predecessors — for example.
They know they stand on very broad shoulders.
As we enjoy this special holiday, I ask every American to join me in thanking those who have — for all of us — stood that treacherous ground and borne that terrible burden: our wounded and missing warriors, their families and the families of the fallen. Please recommit yourselves to supporting them over there and when they come home. They have given us so much, and we owe them so very much in return.
To all our veterans — past and future — as well as your families, the Joint Chiefs and I salute you. We will always remember your service and may America always remember its promise to you.
U.S. Department of Defense
Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense (Public Affairs)