Trump sent out an official presidential proclamation commemorating the 50th anniversary of the Vietnam War, which for some bizarre reason is a 13-year long “celebration” of one of the most horrible things this country has ever done. The proclamation leaves out a few important details.
Today, I lead our Nation in somber reflection as we continue the 13-year Commemoration of the 50th Anniversary of the Vietnam War that began in 2012. We salute our brave Vietnam veterans who, in service to our Nation and in defense of liberty, fought gallantly against the spread of communism and defended the freedom of the Vietnamese people.
Fifty years ago, in 1967, nearly 500,000 American troops served in South Vietnam, along with approximately 850,000 troops of our allies. Today, during Veterans and Military Families Month and as the Federal Government observes Veterans Day, I am in Vietnam alongside business and political leaders to advance the interests of America, and to promote peace and stability in this region and around the world. I cherish this opportunity to recall, with humility, the sacrifices our veterans made for our freedom and our Nation’s strength.
During this Commemoration of the 50th Anniversary of the Vietnam War, we embrace our responsibility to help our Vietnam veterans and their families heal from the heavy toll of war. We remember the more than 58,000 soldiers whose names are memorialized on black granite wall in our Nation’s capital for having borne the heaviest cost of war. We also pay tribute to the brave patriots who suffered as prisoners of war, and we stand steadfast in our commitment not to rest until we account for the 1,253 heroes who have not yet returned to American soil.
Americans like to not be reminded of the things its government does. We don’t think about the millions and millions of lives lost as a result of American interventions around the world, not to mention all the dictators we’re put in power. We don’t think about any of that. We accept for others what we would never accept for ourselves. And then we celebrate it with a childish nationalism that tells us that it’s glorious and patriotic to ignore the truth.