Dwight D. Eisenhower, the Supreme Allied Commander, wrote a letter to the troops had had it read to them just prior to the D-Day invasion. In the letter he invokes the blessing of God and tells the troop that the hopes and prayers of liberty-loving people everywhere rest upon them. Below is a YouTube video of Eisenhower reading it, and below that is the transcript the letter.
“Soldiers, Sailors and Airmen of the Allied Expeditionary Force!
You are about to embark upon the Great Crusade, toward which we have striven these many months. The eyes of the world are upon you. The hopes and prayers of liberty-loving people everywhere march with you. In company with our brave Allies and brothers-in-arms on other Fronts, you will bring about the destruction of the German war machine, the elimination of Nazi tyranny over the oppressed peoples of Europe, and security for ourselves in a free world.
Your task will not be an easy one. Your enemy is well trained, well equipped and battle-hardened. He will fight savagely.
But this is the year 1944! Much has happened since the Nazi triumphs of 1940-41. The United Nations have inflicted upon the Germans great defeats, in open battle, man-to-man. Our air offensive has seriously reduced their strength in the air and their capacity to wage war on the ground. Our Home Fronts have given us an overwhelming superiority in weapons and munitions of war, and placed at our disposal great reserves of trained fighting men. The tide has turned! The free men of the world are marching together to Victory!
I have full confidence in your courage, devotion to duty and skill in battle. We will accept nothing less than full Victory!
Good Luck! And let us all beseech the blessing of Almighty God upon this great and noble undertaking.”
Signed Dwight D. Eisenhower (Source: General Eisenhower’s Message Sent Just Prior to the Invasion)
I am grateful, especially this day, for these troops who so bravely stood up to fight the forces of evil brought upon the world by National Socialism (Hitler’s Nazi Germany). I have heard a lot in the news this weekend about ‘Never Again’ referring to the Holocaust and the other horrors of fascist Germany in the 30s and 40s. And I pray that such evil does never again come upon us, and I pray that the Americans and people all over the world will recognize such evil regimes and remove them from power before they get strong enough to commit such acts like that again. I hope the day never comes that the freedom-loving people have to again stand up to tyranny. But if that day does come, I hope that generation has the fortitude of character and the faith in God to do what America’s Greatest Generation accomplished.