Obama Honors Korean War Veterans on Armistice Day

U.S. President Barack Obama has issued a proclamation marking National Korean War Veterans Armistice Day, which was on Sunday.

"More than six decades ago, courageous Americans joined Korean patriots as they defended their right to decide their own fate," the president said. "They fought through mud, snow and heavy fire. As they stood firm against the tide of Communism, nearly 37,000 Americans gave their last full measure of devotion." 

"Thanks to all who served and all who died, allied forces pushed invading armies back across the 38th parallel, and on July 27, 1953, they secured a hard-earned victory," he continued. "On National Korean War Veterans Armistice Day, we honor the men and women who sacrificed so a people they had never met would know the blessings of liberty and security."

Obama stressed that the government will do its best to reciprocate the loyalty shown by veterans.

"Yet our gratitude is not enough," he added. "As a nation, we must do more to keep faith with our veterans and the families that stand with them always. Just as they have done their duty, we must do ours. We will never waver in our commitment to fully account for the captured and the missing, nor will we ever stop striving to give our veterans the care and opportunities they have earned."

The president also discussed the importance of the Korea-U.S. alliance.

"It reminds us that liberty and democracy do not come easily; we must win them, tend to them constantly and defend them without fail," he said.

Obama has issued a presidential proclamation for National Korean War Veterans Armistice Day every year since he was sworn into office in 2009.

Last year, he became the first U.S. president in office to attend the commemoration ceremony when it was held at the Korean War Veterans Memorial on the National Mall for the 60th anniversary.

englishnews@chosun.com / Jul. 28, 2014 09:15 KST