President Joe Biden is taking some heat for not mentioning veterans on the 77th anniversary of the D-Day invasion on June 6, 1944.
“As a veteran I find it reprehensible that the president ends his speeches with ‘God bless the troops,’ which now seems to be in words only. He blatantly forgot to acknowledge the tremendous sacrifice of our greatest generation,” an Afghanistan and Iraq wars veteran said in a published report on Monday.
On Sunday, the 77th anniversary of the massive invasion of the European mainland by allied troops during World War II, Biden put out a tweet on social media about commemorating the Tulsa Massacre earlier in the week.
“I met with survivors of the Tulsa Massacre this week to help fill the silence,” Biden said in the post on Twitter from his official presidential account. “Because in silence, wounds deepen. And, as painful as it is, only in remembrance do wounds heal.”
While Biden seemed to neglect mentioning the soldiers that stormed the Normandy beaches in France in 1944, both Vice President Kamala Harris and First Lady Jill Biden did post acknowledgements of the anniversary.
“Seventy-seven years ago, families gathered around radios and heard FDR pray for a ‘peace that will let all of men live in freedom, reaping the just rewards of their honest toil,’” First Lady Jill Biden posted. “Let us never forget those who fought, their families, or sacrifices, and let us always pray for peace.”
“On the 77th anniversary of #DDay, we honor the heroes who stormed the beaches of Normandy and liberated a continent,” Vice President Harris posted Sunday. “We will never forget their courage and sacrifice.”
White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki downplayed criticism of the president on the subject when asked by a reporter.
“I can tell you that certainly his value for the role the men who served on D-Day and the memory of them, the families who have kept their memories alive over the course of years on this day, is something the president has spoken to many, many times in the past,” Psaki said at a press briefing Monday. “It’s close to his heart and I wouldn’t be surprised if there’s more we have to say on it.”
In one of the largest military actions in history, more than 156,000 American, British, and Canadian troops came ashore along a 50-mile stretch of beaches in Normandy, France in which would become a pivotal battle in the war against Hitler’s Nazi regime, according to the History.com website.
More than 4,000 allied troops, including an estimated 2,400 American soldiers died on those blood-stained beaches, with thousands more injured in the fierce fighting.
In less than a week, allied soldiers secured the beaches and brought more than 326,000 troops, 50,000 vehicles, and 100,000 lbs. of equipment onto the European mainland.
The action led to the liberation of Paris, turning the tide of the war against Hitler, and led to victory over the Nazis in May 1945.
Biden becomes the first president in two decades to ignore the anniversary during his first year in office, according to published reports.
Presidents Barack Obama and Donald Trump each traveled to Normandy to commemorate the anniversary.
According to USA Today, ceremonies for the anniversary in France were smaller this year due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
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