Excerpts From Remarks to a Group of Correspondents About To Return to the Scene of the Normandy Invasion.
WELL, I THINK it's just a waste of words for me to tell you how much I would like to go along. I don't know exactly what you are going to do. I was there in 1951, when they had a big ceremony. I hope you will pay my respects to the Mayor of Ste. Mere Eglise.
I frequently get to questioning myself about--we used to talk a lot about our sacrifices, and so on--about what these sacrifices brought us. Of course, they brought us--and bought us--an immediate safety from the danger then threatening.
What did they bring us in the long run? We know they brought us an opportunity to do something, but what did these sacrifices mean? I have never been able, and probably never will be able, to write down something, myself, to satisfy me.
But I do know this: that out of it all, the people who know war, those that experienced it--you writers, the fighting men--I believe we are the most earnest advocates of peace in the world. I believe these people that talk about peace academically but who never had to dive into a ditch when a Messerschmidt 109 came over, they really don't know what it is.
How long are you going to be gone? A week or 10 days. Probably you won't go through a town there that I haven't been through. You'll see many old friends of mine--some farmers around there, where we used to camp, on down to Granville, the peninsula Cherbourg, and around there. Please give them my warmest greetings. I like them. I really envy you the chance.
Note: The President spoke in the Rose Garden. The full text of his remarks was not released.
Dwight D. Eisenhower, Excerpts From Remarks to a Group of Correspondents About To Return to the Scene of the Normandy Invasion. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/232100