- The Washington Times - Monday, December 7, 2009


Today is the anniversary of a day that will live in infamy. On Dec. 7, 1941, Imperial Japan launched surprise attacks that brought America into the Second World War. The United States and our allies were blessed with leaders who were dedicated to doing whatever it took to defeat the enemy, no matter how long that took. As General Douglas MacArthur put it so succinctly, “In war, there is no substitute for victory.” That’s a lesson our current president still needs to learn.

President Franklin D. Roosevelt, Dec. 8, 1941: “No matter how long it may take us to overcome this premeditated invasion, the American people, in their righteous might, will win through to absolute victory. … With confidence in our armed forces, with the unbounding determination of our people, we will gain the inevitable triumph. So help us God.”

British Prime Minister Winston Churchill, May 10, 1940: “Upon this battle depends the survival of Christian civilization. … The whole fury and might of the enemy must very soon be turned on us.

“Hitler knows that he will have to break us in this Island or lose the war. If we can stand up to him, all Europe may be free and the life of the world may move forward into broad, sunlit uplands. But if we fail, then the whole world, including the United States, including all that we have known and cared for, will sink into the abyss of a new Dark Age made more sinister, and perhaps more protracted, by the lights of perverted science.

“Let us therefore brace ourselves to our duties, and so bear ourselves that if the British Empire and its Commonwealth last for a thousand years, men will still say, ‘This was their finest hour.’”

President Harry S. Truman, July 19, 1950: “We know that the cost of freedom is high. But we are determined to preserve our freedom - no matter what the cost.”

President Barack H. Obama, Dec. 1, 2009: “There are those who oppose identifying a time-frame for our transition to Afghan responsibility. Indeed, some call for a more dramatic and open-ended escalation of our war effort. … I reject this course because it sets goals that are beyond what we can achieve at a reasonable cost, and what we need to achieve to secure our interests.”

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