Happy Veterans Day
Friday, November 11, 2005 (07:31:22)

Posted by Steve Blackwell

As the nation braced itself for the final throes of the Civil War, thousands of spectators gathered on a muddy Pennsylvania Avenue near the U.S. Capitol to hear President Lincoln’s second inaugural address. It was March 4, 1865, a time of great uneasiness. In just over one month, the war would end and the president would be assassinated.


As the nation braced itself for the final throes of the Civil War, thousands of spectators gathered on a muddy Pennsylvania Avenue near the U.S. Capitol to hear President Lincoln’s second inaugural address. It was March 4, 1865, a time of great uneasiness. In just over one month, the war would end and the president would be assassinated.

President Lincoln framed his speech on the moral and religious implications of the war; rhetorically questioning how a just God could unleash such a terrible war upon the nation. “If we shall suppose that American slavery is one of those offenses in the providence of God, ... and that He gives to both North and South this terrible war as the woe due to those by whom the offenses came.”

With its deep philosophical insights, critics have hailed the speech as one of Lincoln ’s best.

As the speech progressed, President Lincoln turned from the divisive bitterness at the war’s roots to the unifying task of reconciliation and reconstruction. In the speech’s final paragraph, the president delivered his prescription for the nation’s recovery:


“With malice toward none, with charity for all,
with firmness in the right as God gives us to see the right,
let us strive on to finish the work we are in,
to bind up the nation’s wounds,
to care for him who shall have borne the battle
and for his widow, and his orphan,
to do all which may achieve and cherish
a just and lasting peace among ourselves and with all nations.”


With the words, “To care for him who shall have borne the battle and for his widow, and his orphan,” President Lincoln affirmed the government’s obligation to care for those injured during the war and to provide for the families of those who perished on the battlefield.

So to all of you who have borne the battle and continue to do so today and also to those of you who support our brave men and women around the world defending freedom, I salute you and wish you a safe and happy Veterans Day...

Content received from: The Military Police Homepage, http://www.militarypolice.com