Chairman Cites History in Veterans Day Message
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, Nov. 10, 2008 Navy Adm. Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, has issued a Veterans Day message to those who now serve or have served in the armed forces.
Here is the text of the chairman’s message:
“When Armistice was declared on November 11, 1918, effectively ending World War I, over sixty-five million individuals had been mobilized for the “Great War” that resulted in almost nine million deaths and over twenty-one million wounded. In just a year and a half of operations, 126,000 Americans lost their lives on the muddy landscapes of Europe and in the icy depths of the North Atlantic. Such loss of life and limb is hard to fathom today.
“History has debunked the notion of a ‘War to End All Wars.’ And history has also proven that peace does not preserve itself. It requires millions of dedicated men and women – like you and your families – all working in unison toward what one memorial hails as ‘high idealism, courageous sacrifice, and gallant achievement.’
“Today, a new generation of veterans carries this torch. Operations Iraqi and Enduring Freedom have forged the most combat-hardened force in our nation’s history. Yet, no war is without its casualties. Whether seen – or unseen – the wounds of war last a lifetime, and so should our care.
“Our wounded veterans and their families deserve only the best medical care our nation can provide – care on par with the service and sacrifice these patriots have rendered. From the battlefield to regional hospitals, and rehabilitation centers to reintegration programs, our wounded, ill, and injured Service members and their families merit a continuum of care that lasts a lifetime.
“To all our veterans – past and present – and your families, the Joint Chiefs and I salute you and thank you for your service and your sacrifice. As we remember those who have gone before us, may we honor their service through ours.
Admiral, U.S. Navy