Each year on Memorial Day, America honours and remembers those brave and heroic Americans who have paid the ultimate price for our freedom, the men and women who died fighting for our country. President Obama is to visit the Arlington cemetery this Memorial Day to pay his tribute to our fallen military heroes.
Arlington National Cemetery has been in existence since the American Civil War when the land had been obtained from Robert E Lee and the first military burial at Arlington of a white soldier, William Henry Christman, occurred on May 13, 1864.
Since that time, the men and women who have paid for our freedom and liberty with their lives have been interred in the national cemetery and friends and relatives can visit the graves of these fallen warriors.
The National Arlington Cemetery, which is situated directly across the Potomac River from the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D C will have flags at every grave on Memorial Day morning.
Despite the fact that the president wants to cut back the countries use of force against terrorists, he fully supports the men and women in the Armed Forces. Last Thursday he explained his position on the terrorist issue by saying, “Not every collection of thugs that labels themselves al Qaeda will pose a credible threat to the United States.”
It was inevitable that Republicans are not pleased with the president’s stand. Republican Senator Michael McCaul said, “The idea that we can’t have a counterterrorism footprint to respond to the future Bin Ladens of the world, I think that’s dangerous.”
Republican Lindsay Graham said on Fox news that, “At a time we need resolved the most, we are sounding retreat. Our enemies are emboldened all over the planet.”
But despite this opposition, President Obama is to show his support for the men and women in the Armed Forces with a visit to the Arlington National Cemetery this Memorial Day to lay a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.
The annual National Memorial Day Concert took place on Sunday night on the west lawn of the U.S. Capitol. The concert, ran from 8 to 9:30 p.m. and was broadcast on PBS. It featured a starry lineup of artists and performers that included the newly crowned winner of American Idol, Candice Glover.
This annual pre-Memorial Day event honors the military veterans and troops currently in active service.
Former Secretary of State Colin Powell spoke about the meaning of Memorial Day and the National Symphony Orchestra also performed. Actors Joe Mantegna and Gary Sinise co-hosted the event.
The concert is broadcast live on PBS and via American Forces Network. Day is a time of mourning and celebration.
Sunday night’s Memorial Day concert served to remind us of America’s bonds in time of war, even when that war is changing. Monday will see ceremonies at a number of memorials in Washington and all over other National Cemeteries in the country, These memorial ceremonies will including veterans from previous wars who will be a part of the ceremony.
Americans will go to the cemeteries, memorials, and monuments nationwide to honor their family members and friends who have died in the service of their country and fellow Americans.
Aside from President Obama’s wreath laying ceremony while he is at the Arlington National Cemetery on Memorial Day, another wreath ceremony will be performed at the Franklin D. Roosevelt Four Freedoms Park in New York City. The park is a tribute to President Roosevelt’s famous speech supporting freedom of speech, freedom of worship, freedom from want and freedom from fear.
By Michael Smith