Foreign Policy Blogs

On Memorial Day, Let's Honor the Memory of Those Who Have Served

Here in America, a lot of us are aware of what Memorial Day stands for – it formally commemorates the men and women who fought and died while in military service. However, too often, it’s simply summer’s annual kick-off, and the official start to vacation season.

Once upon a time, Memorial Day marked a moment of remembrance and reconciliation at the end of this nation’s bloody civil war. It’s now commoditized itself into a weekend of shopping, cook-outs, and national media events like the Indy 500 and the Coca-Cola 600 auto races.

This year, I’d like to think that we can all take a moment to remember the brave soldiers, Marines and airmen who have fought and died in Iraq and Afghanistan over the past decade. Our nation has never been at war for such a long stretch of time – yet we, as a country, have never been so disconnected from the sacrifices made by our men and women in uniform.

This Memorial Day, as the twilight of America’s mission in Iraq settles in, let’s remember that this weekend isn’t about politics. Or beaches. Or barbecues. It’s about the brave men and women who gave their lives to defend our constitution against all enemies, both foreign and domestic. They did not choose their fights, but they served when asked, and died for our freedoms.

Our sincere thanks…