Yesterday was the 68th anniversary of the D-Day invasion. Warren Kozak writes at The Wall Street Journal:
Franklin Roosevelt is not remembered for his religious dogma. Yet 68 years ago on the night of June 6, as tens of thousands of American and Allied forces were flung into a caldron of fire in Western Europe, the president and commander in chief sought to calm an anxious nation as he spoke to his people. It was a presidential address that stands out as a testament to how much our nation has changed since that evening in the late spring of 1944.
Beginning around midnight the night before, elements of the 101st and 82nd Airborne Divisions had landed behind enemy lines in France. They were followed seven hours later by massive landings on beaches in Normandy code-named Sword, Juneau, Gold, Omaha and Utah.
Americans began hearing special reports in the middle of the night and they continued to follow events closely throughout the day. At lunch counters and in offices and factories, people clustered around their radios. So it was both natural and necessary that the president say something.
Yet instead of giving a news account—something Americans had already heard from network radio news and read in their evening papers—Franklin Roosevelt chose a different course. He led the nation in prayer.
President Reagan observed the 40th anniversary of D-Day: