Proclamation 5842 -- National Week of Recognition and Remembrance for Those Who Served in the Korean War, 1988

 

July 26, 1988

 

By the President of the United States of America

 

A Proclamation

 

Our Nation's beginning was signed with the blood of patriots, and in the more than 212 years that have followed our founding we have never forgotten to pause in honor of the gallant Americans who have suffered and died in the cause of freedom. As we approach the 35th anniversary of the cease-fire that marked the end of active combat in the Korean War, it is appropriate that we take time to remember and express our gratitude to those who served in that fierce conflict. We do so proudly, knowing that their spirit will define forever the words ``courage'' and ``liberty.''

 

In June 1950, when the Communist North Korean army invaded the Republic of Korea in a brazen attempt to extinguish the light of freedom there, American forces joined with those of many other nations to repel this unprovoked assault. Weary of war ourselves and ready to lead an era of peaceful recovery, we nonetheless came to Korea's defense because instinct and experience have taught us that freedom can have no borders, that an attack on free men anywhere is an attack on free men everywhere.

 

Standing shoulder to shoulder with the valiant South Korean armies and troops of 16 other countries operating under United Nations command, nearly six million of our service men and women -- more than served in World War I -- participated in the drive to preserve Korea's territorial integrity and political independence. At Inchon and the Chosin Reservoir, on Old Baldy and Pork Chop Hill, in battle and siege all across the Korean Peninsula, our forces endured unspeakable hardships for a fellow people struggling to keep free. Over 54,000 Americans died, more than 100,000 suffered wounds, and over 8,000 remain missing in action. Theirs has been called the ``Forgotten War,'' but, as President Eisenhower told the Nation 35 years ago on the signing of the Korean Armistice, they proved ``once again that only courage and sacrifice can keep freedom alive upon the earth.'' This is a message that must forever live on in the memories and in the hearts of all who cherish liberty.

 

The Congress, by Senate Joint Resolution 318, has designated the week of July 25 through July 31, 1988, as ``National Week of Recognition and Remembrance for Those Who Served in the Korean War'' and authorized and requested the President to issue a proclamation observing this week and urging the departments and agencies of the United States and interested organizations, groups, and individuals to fly the American flag at half-staff on July 27, 1988, in memory of those Americans who died as a result of their service in Korea.

 

Now, Therefore, I, Ronald Reagan, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim the week of July 25 through July 31, 1988, as National Week of Recognition and Remembrance for Those Who Served in the Korean War. I call upon the people of the United States to observe such week with appropriate ceremonies and activities and call upon and authorize all departments and agencies of the United States and interested organizations, groups, and individuals to fly United States flags at half-staff on July 27, 1988, as a symbol of our gratitude to those who died as a result of their service in Korea and of our steadfast commitment to preserving the values for which they fought.

 

In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand this twenty-sixth day of July, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred and eighty-eight, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirteenth.

 

Ronald Reagan

 

[Filed with the Office of the Federal Register, 10:59 a.m., July 27, 1988]