THE IRON PEN by Daniel Hite

December 7, 2010

The Infamous Date

Today as we remember the event that brought America into World War II–the Japanese attack on the Pearl Harbor military installation on December 7, 1941–I was drawn to revisit President Roosevelt’s dramatic speech, “A date which will live in infamy,” delivered to Congress on the following day. Roosevelt concluded,

“…we will gain the inevitable triumph. So help us God.”

Sixty years later, September 11, 2001, this generation saw another attack which would indelibly write another infamous date on America’s calendar. But this time the attack would be upon a civilian target and from a more nebulous and subtle enemy. President Bush concluded his address to Congress with these words:

“I will not forget the wound to our country and those who inflicted it. I will not yield, I will not rest, I will not relent in waging this struggle for freedom and security for the American people. The course of this conflict is not known, yet its outcome is certain. Freedom and fear, justice and cruelty, have always been at war, and we know that God is not neutral between them. Fellow citizens, we’ll meet violence with patient justice, assured of the rightness of our cause and confident of the victories to come. In all that lies before us, may God grant us wisdom and may He watch over the United States of America.”

America does have a date with destiny. Her history, virtue, and resolve shape her future. Remembering this day and others like it should strengthen us, our faith, and our determination to seek God’s providential hand of protection and blessing and a renewed reliance upon His infinite wisdom and guidance.

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