A half-century ago, every branch of the United States military battled courageously to meet the threat of a brutal communist regime determined to spread its poisonous doctrine throughout southeast Asia and then across the globe. In the jungles, above them, or on the sea, American combatants fought a shifty and cruel enemy in a far-away corner of the globe whose sole mission was to tear down our way of life and prevent others from achieving it. Wherever they met the enemy, America's fighting forces did it with valor and with honor, despite the enormous sacrifice endured by themselves and their families.
Though the extent of America's victory was to stem the tide of communism, the effort left few at home in a mood to celebrate. Now, on the semi-centennial of this protracted challenge, the men, women, and families of those who served in Vietnam can display their pride.