Obama marks Pearl Harbor 75th anniversary

By Philip Noble 12/8/16

Wednesday marks the 75th anniversary of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor that killed 2400 Americans and launched this country into World War 2.

President Barack Obama honored those dead, and the generation that won the war, saying “Their sacrifice galvanized millions of GIs and Rosie the Riveters who answered the call to defend liberty at its moment of maximum peril.”

President Obama then spoke of reconciliation between the U.S. and Japan. “As a testament that even the most bitter of enemies can become the closest of allies, I look forward to visiting the USS Arizona Memorial later this month along with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe,” he said.

This would be the first instance of any Japanese leader visiting the memorial, which lies above one of the battleships sunk in the Pearl Harbor attack.

Speaking on his visit, Abe said “This will be a visit to soothe the souls of the victims. We should never repeat the ravages of war.”

The visit by Prime Minister Abe is seen as a reciprocation of President Obama’s visit to Hiroshima, where the first atomic bomb was dropped on Japan. That visit was the first time a sitting U.S. President has visited the city.