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U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III statement on 80th Anniversary of the Attack on Pearl Harbor

United States Department of Defense - DoDWashington, D.C. – Today we recognize the 80th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor, and in so doing we remember the valor exhibited that day by so many American service members and civilians. We also honor the sacrifice of those who did not survive the attack, who died in defense of their country.

The ranks of Pearl Harbor survivors grow thinner with each passing year. But the memory of their heroism — and our gratitude — still shine bright. They were among the first of the Greatest Generation to taste combat, to know war. And they answered that call to duty with exceptional skill and fortitude. We still stand on their broad shoulders.

Indeed, now together with our allies and partners, we remain committed to defending the free and open Indo-Pacific that these heroes built. And we remain committed to maintaining the international rules-based order that they forged, one that raised billions of people out of poverty and made the world a more prosperous place — not just for one nation’s people, but for people across the globe.

Old enemies are now the closest of friends. Old Soldiers and Sailors are now the best of teachers and sterling examples. And old battlefields — like Pearl Harbor — now inspire us to preserve the peace and stability for which so many sacrificed.

We remember today, to be sure, and we are humbled. But we also look forward, and we are grateful.


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