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December 7, 2009

Pearl Harbor

Sixty-eight years after Pearl Harbor, we look at that treacherous attack and recall, just as we recall from 9/11, that the world is a dangerous place, and that when our enemies have the power, they will fulfill their rhetoric with violence. We cannot pretend that our enemies will be deterred by half-hearted efforts.

We also cannot pretend that full-hearted efforts breed only misery and destruction. Today, Japan and South Korea live in peace and prosperity because we had the courage to defend ourselves when attacked, and we had the courage to keep fighting even through some of the most desperate and long-running and discouraging battles of the war, and we had the courage to build nations that would stand on their own instead of an empire that would bring us dominance. Now those nations and many more have joined the free peoples and have charted a just destiny along with us, by their own choices.

Time tables for withdrawal were not needed in the Second World War, but saddeningly and inspiringly, we did need many good leaders, and many brave soldiers. Even those who did not return home injured or in coffins were separated from their homes and families for long periods of time, sometimes even through the holiday season we are experiencing now. They did this because they knew it was the right thing to do, and their efforts have reaped great rewards for many people in their nation and in foreign nations.

Let us today remember what they achieved, and let us consider how we may keep and expand upon those gains, so that our children and the children of many more people around the world can experience the blessings of liberty as we have.

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©2017 Thomas S. Smith IV.