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tv   President Reagan at D- Day 40th Anniversary  CSPAN  June 6, 2019 3:58am-4:15am EDT

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>> in 1984, president reagan visited normandy for the 40th anniversary of d-day. he talked about the victory and continued role of the u.s. and europe. this is 10 minutes. >> are here to mark the game history when the allied armies joined in battle to reclaim this continent to liberty. years, much of europe had been under a terrible shadow. jewsnations had fallen, cried out in the camps, millions climbed off -- client -- cried out for liberation. europe was an slaved and the world prayed for its rescue.
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here in normandy, the rescue began. allies stood and fought against tyranny in the giant undertaking unparalleled in human history. lonely windswept point on the northern shore of france. the air is soft but 40 years ago at this moment, the air was dense with smoke and the cries of men and the air was filled with the crack of rifle fire and the roar of canon. -- cannon. 200awn on june 6, 1944, rangers ran to the bottom of these cliffs. their mission was one of the most daring of the invasion, to climb this year-end deficit -- desolate cliffs and take out the enemy guns. the allies at henan told that mightiest guns were here and they would be trained on the beaches to stop the allied advance. the rangers looked up and saw
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the enemy soldiers, the edge of the cliffs shooting down with machine guns and throwing grenades. the american rangers began to climb. they shot rope ladders over the face of these cliffs and pulled themselves up. when one ranger fell, another would take his place. when one rope was cut, another would begin his client again. they climbed, shot back, and held their footing. soon, one by one, the rangers pulled themselves over the top. and in seizing that land, they began to seize back the continent of europe. 225 came here. after two days of fighting, only 90 could still bear arms. behind me is a memorial that symbolizes the ranger daggers thrust into the top of these cliffs. and before me are the men who ut them there. these are the boys of puent
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ajo. these are the men who took the liffs. these are the champion who is helped free a continent and these are the hero who is helped end a war. think of k at you, i the words of stephen spender's poem. men who fought for life and lived breath of vivid air signed with your honor. i know what you may be thinking, thinking we were just part of a bigger effort, that everyone was brave that day. well, everyone was. do you remember the story of the bill of the 51st highlanders? 40 years ago, british troops were pinned down near a bridge waiting desperately for help. suddenly they heard the sound of bagpipes. some thought they were drinking.
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well, they were not. they saw bill with his bagpipes ignoring reinforcements and ignoring the smack of bullets in the ground around him. ord lovett was with him, who announced when he got to bridge, orry, i'm a few minutes late, as if he had just been delayed by a traffic jam, when he had been fighting on sword beach. the unsurpassed courage of the canadians, who had already seen the horrors of war on this coast. they knew what awaited them there, but they would not be deterred. once they hit juno beach, they never looked back. all of these men were part of a rollcall of honor, with names that spoke of a pride as bright as the colors they bore. the royal winnipeg rifles,
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poland's 24th lancers, the royal scott fusiliers, the screaming eagles, england's armored divisions, the forces of free france, the coast guard's matchbox fleet and you, the american rangers. 40 summers have passed since the battle you fought here. you were young when you took these cliffs. some of you were hardly boys, and yet you risk everything here. why? why did you do it? what compelled you to put aside the instinct for self-preservation and risk your lives to take these cliffs? what inspired all the men of the armies that met here? we look at you, and somehow we know the answer. it was faith and belief, loyalty nd love.
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the men of normandy had faith that what they were doing was right, faith that they fought for all humanity. faith that a just god would grant them mercy on this beach r on the next. it was deep knowledge, and great god, we have not lost it. there is a profound moral difference between the use of force for liberation and the use of force for conquest. you were here to liberate, not to conquer, and so you and others did not doubt your cause. you knew that some things were worth dying for. one's country is worth dying for and democracy is worth dying spr for because it is the most deeply honorable form of government ever devised by man. all of you loved liberty, all of you were willing to fight tyranny, and you knew the people
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of your country were behind you. the american who is fought here that morning knew word of the invasion was spreading through the the darkness back home. they felt in their hearts they could not know, but in fact, in georgia, they were filling the churches at 4:00 a.m.. in kansas, they were kneeling on their porches and praying. and in philadelphia, they were ringing the liberty bell. something else helped the men of d-day. the rockhard belief that providence would have a hand, that god was an ally in this great cause. and so the night before this invasion, when colonel warburton asked his parachute troops to kneel with him in prayer, he told them do not bow your heads, but look up, so you can see god and ask his blessing in what we are about to o.
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also, matthew ridgway, listening on his cot for the promise of god made to joshua. i will not fail nor forsake hee. these are the things a shaped the unity over the allies. when the war was over, there were lives to be rebuilt and governments to be returned to the people. there were nations to be reborn. above all, there is a new peace to be assured. but the allies summoned strength -- these were huge and downtowning tasks,but the allies summoned strength from the faith, belief, loyalty, and love of those who fell here. they rebuilt a new europe together. there was first a great reconciliation amongst those who had been enemies, all of whom had suffered so greatly. the united states did its part, creating the marshall plan to help rebuild our allies and former enemies.
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the marshall plan led to the atlantic alliance. a great alliance that serves to this day as our shield for prosperity and peace. in spite of our great efforts and successes, not all that followed the end of the world -- war was happy or planned. some countries were lost, and the great sadness echoes down to our own time in the streets of warsaw, prague, and east berlin. soviet troops who came to the center of this continent did not leave when peace came. they are still there, uninvited, on wanted, unyielding almost 40 years after the war. because of this, allied forces still stand on this continent. today, as 40 years ago, our armies are here for only one purpose, to protect and defend democracy.
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the only territories we hold are memorials like this this one, and graveyards where our heroes rest. americans have learned bitter lessons from two world wars. it is better to be here ready to protect the peace than to take a blind shelter across the sea and only respond after freedom is lost. we have learned isolation of never was and never will be an acceptable response to tyrannical governments with expansionist intent. but we try always to be prepared for peace, prepared to deter aggression. prepared to negotiate the reduction of arms. and yes, prepared to reach out again in the spirit of reconciliation. in truth, there is no reconciliation we would welcome more than a reconciliation with the soviet union. so together, we can lessen the risks of war, now and forever.
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it is fitting to remember the great losses also suffered by the russian people during world ar ii. 20 million perished. a terrible price that testifies to the world the severity of war. i tell you in my heart that we do not want war. we want to wipe from the face of the earth the terrible weapons that man has in his hands. and i tell you we are ready to seize that beach head. we are looking for some sign from the soviet union that they are willing to move forward and that they share our desire for love and peace and that they will give up the ways of conquest. there must be a changing that will allow us to turn our hope into action. we will pray forever that someday a changing will come. but for now, particularly today, it is good and fitting to renew our commitment to each
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other. to our freedom and to our athrines protects it. we are bound today boy what und us -- by what bound us -- us 40 years ago. the loyalties, traditions, and beliefs. we are bound by reality. the strength of america's allies is vital to the united states and the american security guarantee is essential to the continued freedom of europe's democracies. we were with you then, we are with you now. your hopes are our hopes and your destiny is our destiny. here in this place, let us make a vow to our dead. let us show them that by our actions, we understand what they died for. that our actions say to them the words for with matthew ridgway listened. i will not fail theenor forsake thee.
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let us continue to stand for the ideals for which they lived and died. thank you very much and god bless you all. [applause] >> thursday we'll bring you d-day anniversary events from normandy france from president trump and other world leaders in attendance. live coverage begins at 4:30 a.m. on c-span. t 10:00 a.m. a ceremony from the world war ii memorial in washington, d.c.. 15012-50, coverage from the about about te u.s. relations with africa. porter: sunday on q & a,
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discussing ku klux klan members. >> he was wearing military camouflage, fatigues with the blood drop emblem here and the andials k.k.k. on his chest embroidered across the beret on his head, ku klux klan. he came in and was followed by mr. keller. in a dark blue suit and tie. when he saw me, he just froze. regained their balance looking all around the room. i knew what they were thinking. they were thinking either the desk clerk gave them the wrong room number or this was a setup or an ambush. i went like this to display my hands. nothing in them. i stood up and i approached him
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and said hi, mr. kelly. my name is darrell davis. come on in. >> sunday night on q & a on c-span. >> the reviews are in for c span's the president's book. it is called a mile post in the evolving and ever changing reputations of our presidents and from the new york journal of books, the presidents makes a fast, engrossing read. and with graduations and father's day fast approaching c-span's the presidents makes a great gift. how presidential historians rank the best and worst chief executives from george washington to barack obama. explore the life events that shaped our leaders, the legacies they left. c-spans the president's is available as a hard cover or e-book today at
4:14 am announcer: in december, 1944, warner bros. released "beachhead to berlin." it documents the did it preparations and the allied assault on the beaches of normandy. it is 20 minutes. ♪


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