For the first time in 14 years, the United States has the opportunity to celebrate its Memorial Day, the day for celebrating and remembering those who fought for America, without any major ground war.
Near Washington, at the Arlington National Cemetery Obama paid respects to U.S. soldiers who fought for the country during the conflicts throughout the years, such as the now historic World War II to the more recent bouts in Iraq and Afghanistan.
A quote from Obama’s Speech: “For many of us, this Memorial Day is especially meaningful. It is the first since our war in Afghanistan came to an end. Today is the first Memorial Day in 14 years that the United States is not engaged in a major ground war.”
Back in 2008, when Obama was still a mere presidential candidate, he was staunchly against the war in Iraq, criticizing Republican and former president, George W. Bush.
According to Obama: “Today, fewer than 10,000 troops remain on a mission to train and assist Afghan forces. We’ll continue to bring them home and reduce our forces further, down to an embassy presence by the end of next year.”
As the U.S. continues to maintain its presence in conflicts through involvement in air campaigns aimed at Islamic State forces stationed in Syria and Iraq, while aiding training campaigns in Iraq and Afghanistan, Obama has been apprehensive on whether to send out ground troops again.
“But Afghanistan remains a very dangerous place. And as so many families know, our troops continue to risk their lives for us.”