“December 7, 1941- a date which will live in infamy- the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by naval and air forces of the Empire of Japan.”
Thus spoke President Franklin D. Roosevelt following the attack on Pearl Harbor by over 350 Japanese aircraft.
Five American battleships and three destroyers were sunk, 400 planes were destroyed and over 4000 were killed or wounded.
President Roosevelt concluded:
“No matter how long it may take us to overcome this premeditated invasion, the American people in their righteous might, will win through to absolute victory…We will not only defend ourselves to the uttermost but will make it very certain that this form of treachery shall never again endanger us.”
“Hostilities exist. There is no blinking at the fact that our people, our territory, and our interests are in grave danger. With confidence in our armed forces – with the unbounding determination of our people – we will gain the inevitable triumph – so help us God.”
The World War II Memorial in Washington, DC, was dedicated in 2004. Of the over 500 words inscribed on it, the designers chose not to include FDR’s phrase “So help us God,” nor any other mention of God.
The D-Day Landing Prayer Act, S 3078, which has 22 co-sponsors in the Senate, would add FDR’s D-Day Prayer to the Memorial. (http://ohioca.org/)
For more interesting quotes from FDR, read below, taken from: The Faith of FDR-From President Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s Public Papers 1933-1945
“THE WHOLE WORLD is divided between…pagan brutality and the Christian ideal. We choose human freedom which is the Christian ideal.” -FDR, May 27, 1941, Address Announcing Unlimited National Emergency
“PRESERVATION OF THESE rights is vitally important now, not only to us who enjoy them – but to the whole future of Christian civilization.” -FDR, Sept. 1, 1941, Labor Day
“THE WORLD IS too small…for both Hitler and God…Nazis have now announced their plan for enforcing their…pagan religion all over the world…by which the Holy Bible and the Cross of Mercy would be displaced by Mein Kampf and the swastika.” -FDR, Jan. 6, 1942, State of Union
“THOSE FORCES HATE democracy and Christianity…They oppose democracy because it is Christian. They oppose Christianity because it preaches democracy.” -FDR, Nov. 1, 1940, Brooklyn, NY
“I SAW SEVASTOPOL and Yalta! And I know that there is not room enough on earth for both German militarism and Christian decency.” -FDR, March 1, 1945, on Yalta Conference
“THIS GREAT WAR effort…shall not be imperiled by the handful of noisy traitors – betrayers of America, betrayers of Christianity itself.” -FDR, April 28, 1942, Fireside Chat
“WE GUARD AGAINST the forces of anti-Christian aggression, which may attack us from without, and the forces of ignorance and fear which may corrupt us from within.” -FDR, Oct. 28, 1940, Madison Square Garden, NY
“I KNEW THAT someday Russia would return to religion for the simple reason that four or five thousand years of recorded history have proven that mankind has always believed in God in spite of the many abortive attempts to exile God.” -FDR, Feb. 10, 1940, American Youth Congress
“THE AMERICAN PEOPLE…have watched with sympathetic interest the effort of the Jews to renew in Palestine the ties of their ancient homeland and to reestablish Jewish culture in the place where for centuries it flourished and whence it was carried to the far corners of the world…It gives me great pleasure to send my warmest personal greetings.” -FDR, Feb. 6, 1937, United Palestine Appeal, Stephen Wise
“AN ORDERING OF society which relegates religion…to the background can find no place within it for the ideals of the Prince of Peace. The United States rejects such an ordering, and retains its ancient faith.” –FDR, Jan. 4, 1939
“I DOUBT IF there is any problem in the world…that would not find happy solution if approached in the spirit of the Sermon on the Mount…in conformity with the teaching of Him Who is the Way, the Light and the Truth.” -FDR, Oct. 1, 1938, New Orleans Eucharistic Congress
“WE WILL CELEBRATE this Christmas Day in our traditional American way…because the teachings of Christ are fundamental in our lives; and because we want our youngest generation…knowing…the story of the coming of the immortal Prince of Peace.” -FDR, Dec. 24, 1944
William J. Federer is a nationally known speaker, best-selling author, and president of Amerisearch, Inc., a publishing company dedicated to researching America’s noble heritage.
To learn more about the author please visit William Federer
Photo by United States Navy, Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Bruce McVicar