The WW II Memorial in Washington DC Edits God out of Roosevelt Quote-Fiction!
Summary of eRumor:
A inscription on the new WW II memorial in Washington DC cites President Franklin Roosevelt’s famous “Day of infamy” quote about the attack of the Japanese on Pearl Harbor in 1941, but leaves out the phrase “So help us God.”
The eRumor is simply wrong.
There is a list of all the inscriptions on the World War II Memorial on the official website at www.wwiimemorial.com. One of them is from Roosevelt’s “Day of Infamy” speech, but is not the portion quoted in the eRumor.
According to the website, this is the inscription:
“DECEMBER 7, 1941, A DATE WHICH WILL LIVE IN INFAMY…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.”
The inscription uses the first phrase from Roosevelt’s speech then jumps down several paragraphs and draws a sentence from a portion of the speech that does not have any connection to the expression “So help us God.” That phrase is near the end of the speech in a paragraph that says, “
With confidence in our armed forces – with the unbounding determination of our people – we will gain the inevitable triumph – so help us God.”
Yesterday, December 7, 1941 – a date which will live in infamy – the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by naval and air forces of the Empire of Japan.
The United States was at peace with that nation and, at the solicitation of Japan, was still in conversation with its Government and its Emperor looking toward the maintenance of peace in the Pacific. Indeed, one hour after Japanese air squadrons had commenced bombing in the American Island of Oahu, the Japanese Ambassador to the United States and his colleague delivered to our Secretary of State a formal reply to a recent American message. While this reply stated that it seemed useless to continue the existing diplomatic negotiations, it contained no threat or hint of war or of armed attack.
It will be recorded that the distance of Hawaii from Japan makes it obvious that the attack was deliberately planned many days or even weeks ago. During the intervening time the Japanese Government has deliberately sought to deceive the United States by false statements and expressions of hope for continued peace.
The attack yesterday on the Hawaiian Islands has caused severe damage to American naval and military forces. I regret to tell you that very many American lives have been lost. In addition American ships have been reported torpedoed on the high seas between San Francisco and Honolulu.
Yesterday the Japanese Government also launched an attack against Malaya. Last night Japanese forces attacked Hong Kong. Last night Japanese forces attacked Guam. Last night Japanese forces attacked the Philippine Islands. Last night the Japanese attacked Wake Island. This morning the Japanese attacked Midway Island.
Japan has, therefore, undertaken a surprise offensive extending throughout the Pacific area. The facts of yesterday and today speak for themselves. The people of the United States have already formed their opinions and well understand the implications to the very life and safety of our nation.
As Commander-in-Chief of the Army and Navy, I have directed that all measures be taken for our defense.
But always will we remember the character of the onslaught against us. 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.
I believe that I interpret the will of the Congress and of the people when I assert that we will not only defend ourselves to the uttermost but will make it very certain that this form of treachery shall never again endanger us.
Hostilities exist. There is no blinking at the fact that our people, our territory and our interests are in grave danger.
With confidence in our armed forces – with the unbounding determination of our people – we will gain the inevitable triumph – so help us God.
I ask that the Congress declare that since the unprovoked and dastardly attack by Japan on Sunday, December seventh, 1941 a state of war has existed between the United States and the Japanese Empire.
Historical Revisionism at the WWII Memorial
Today I went to visit the new World War II Memorial in Washington, DC. I got an unexpected history lesson. Since I’m a baby boomer, I was one of the
youngest in the crowd. Most were the age of my parents, veterans of “the greatest war” with their families. It was a beautiful day, and people were
smiling and happy to be there. Hundreds of us milled around the memorial, reading the inspiring words of Ike and Truman that are engraved there.
On the Pacific side of the memorial, a group of us gathered to read the words President Roosevelt used to announce the attack on Pearl Harbor:
“Yesterday, December 7, 1941– a date which will live in infamy– the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked.” One woman read
the words aloud: ” With confidence in our armed forces, with the unbounding determination of our people, we will gain the inevitable triumph.” But as
she read, she was suddenly angry. “Wait a minute,” she said. “They left out the end of the quote. They left out the most important part. Roosevelt said
‘so help us God.”
“You’re probably right,” her husband said. “We’re not supposed to say things like that now.”
“I know I’m right,” she insisted. “I remember the speech.” The two shook their heads sadly and walked away.
Listening to their conversation, I thought to myself, “Well, it has been 50 years. She’s probably forgotten.”
But she was right. I went home and pulled out the book my book club is reading. It’s “Flags of Our Fathers” by James Bradley. It’s all about Iwo Jima. I haven’t gotten too far in the book. It’s tough to read because it’s a graphic description of the battles in the Pacific.
But right there it was on page 58. Roosevelt’s speech to the nation. It ends “so help us God.”
The people who edited out that part of the speech when they engraved it on the memorial could have fooled me. I was born after the war. But they
couldn’t fool the people who were there. Roosevelt’s words are engraved on their hearts.
Send this around to your friends. People need to know before everyone forgets.