by Robert Taylor for Communities Digital News
With the 70th anniversary of D-Day just a few days away, it should be a time of celebration and heartfelt appreciation. In Normandy, France, where the allied assault occurred on June 6, 1944, that is precisely the perspective. It is the way it is supposed to be.
Yet here, at home, there is a cloud that hovers over one of the greatest military accomplishments in history and the inevitable question we should ask is “Why?”
Just days before a monumental occasion to honor the ultimate sacrifice of thousands of soldiers from all over the world, there should be moments of solitude, prayer, thankfulness, joy and sorrow. There should be a reaching out of hands across the vast Atlantic Ocean to commemorate the victory of freedom and liberty over tyranny.
True, the celebrations will be grand. The memories will be vivid. There will be feelings of pride and achievement and, for the last time, we will be able to personally thank those who remain for their courage against overwhelming odds.
Why then is there also a pervading sense of melancholy that accompanies the historic events of the day?
Perhaps it is because the current occupant of the White House somehow always manages in his own way to mar an occasion with controversy. Somehow there is always a taint of dispute that bubbles beneath the surface to distract from the true spirit of the moment.
Each day French school children converge by the bus load upon the 50 mile stretch of Normandy coastline where the allied invasion took place. They come to pay tribute to the America that once was, not the America we have become.
French kids learn the history of seven decades ago and they come to understand what “the greatest generation” was all about.