Lt. Gen. North shares Independence Day message

  • Published
  • By Lt. Gen. Gary L. North
  • Commander, 9th Air Force
"The eyes of all America are upon us as we play our part, posterity will bless or curse us."

These words from Revolutionary war hero, Henry Knox, hold as true today as they did 231 years ago. As we celebrate 231 years as a nation, America watches our US military and other governmental agencies support Iraq and Afghanistan and their leadership and people in their quest to become independently governed nations. America is supporting these newly-minted governments and their leaders on their road to independence, and manifest destiny, just as our historical leaders did, 231 years ago.

Americans have seen this struggle before. Our founding fathers created a government during a time of war while their fellow Americans watched and waited to see the outcome. They braved the threat of death as they signed the Declaration of Independence. However, this declaration gave the American people and her military leaders and personnel something larger for which to fight. They went from fighting against tyranny to fighting for the independence of a nation.

Today, America is watching Iraqi and Afghan citizens make the same sacrifices that our founding leadership and their families made during the Revolutionary War. They too, are accepting death, if necessary, as the price for the chance for the independence of their country. They are fighting for their independence from tyranny and terrorists while creating a government which can survive throughout the ages, and grow to be as strong and as great a nation as the one we are privileged to live in.

As we celebrate America's 231st Birthday, take time to remember our nation and its struggles for independence and remember the people of Iraq and Afghanistan that are fighting today, as we fought for our freedoms, for the right to say on our Independence Day "Happy 4th of July". And, as American Airmen, all, let us remember the prophetic words of Henry Knox, as true today, as they were at the birth of our great nation. Happy 4th of July, to you, our great Airmen, and to your families, friends, and the great Americans you protect everyday, at home, and abroad.