View Header


Office of the Vice President

For Immediate Release September 15, 2000 (202)


The nation pauses on National POW/MIA Recognition Day to reflect on the heroism of tens of thousands of Americans who endured the hardship of enemy confinement, and those whose fate in time of war remains unknown. Today, some 88,000 of our fellow citizens are missing in action from World War II, the Korean War, the Cold War and the Vietnam War.

Throughout every state of the union, Americans will fly the somber POW/MIA flag from federal, state and local government buildings. It will fly at national and military cemeteries. We will see it at veterans' posts, on top of schools and hospitals and in front lawns. And we will know that this nation has not forgotten its obligation to former POWs and those who are still missing in action.

Patriotic ceremonies and speeches will commemorate this day. But for some, especially the families of our missing, the war is never over. Their loved ones are still unaccounted for.

Our commitment remains steadfast. They did not fight for us to forget, and this nation never will. Wherever it takes us, for as long as it takes us, we will bring them home.

We will bring them home today at Hickam Air Force Base, Hawaii, when we return to American soil the young men who gave their lives in defense of freedom some 50 years ago in the Korean War. We also honor today at Arlington National Cemetery the life of one Navy flier who made the ultimate sacrifice in Vietnam.

God bless them and God bless America.