Magazine article VFW Magazine

'Veterans of a Forgotten Victory'

Magazine article VFW Magazine

'Veterans of a Forgotten Victory'

Article excerpt

This month marks the 60th anniversary of the Korean War's start. It's time the entire nation remembered veterans of that war.

VFW can be proud of its contribution to commemorating the service and sacrifices of Korean War veterans. To begin with, VFW members donated $600,000 for the construction of the Korean War Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C.

Our organization's literary tribute, Battles of the Korean War (a 135-page book), was reprinted for this year's commemoration. During the 50th anniversary years (2000-2003), the magazine published a three-year-long series of 50 articles upon which the book was based.

And this month's issue is devoted exclusively to Korean War vets. After all, they are 20% of our membership. Moreover, several other symbolic and tangible gestures are to come, ranging from recognition at the national convention to special trips to the capital. This is the least we can do.

Such tributes are well-deserved. For as Reader's Digest once termed them, they are "veterans of a forgotten victory." Today, South Korea is free to elect its own government and create prosperity through free enterprise - in stark contrast to the Stalinist North. The South's survival is living testament to the service of 1 .6 million Americans six decades ago, many of whom are no longer with us.

The late military historian and Korean War vet Harry Summers wrote: "Although not yet fully appreciated, the Korean War was one of the most significant wars of the 20th century. It marked acknowledgment by the Kremlin that communism could no longer be spread by direct force of arms, as it had been spread across eastern Europe in the closing days of World War II. …

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