President Joe Biden joined key U.S. allies in Normandy this Thursday to commemorate the 80th anniversary of the D-Day invasion, a pivotal moment in World War II that marked the beginning of the end for Nazi Germany. Attending the ceremonies were French President Emmanuel Macron, British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. This gathering underscored the monumental achievement of what remains the largest seaborne invasion in history.

During his stay, which will extend through the weekend, President Biden is scheduled to engage in several key activities, including meetings with prominent global leaders. “73,000 brave Americans landed at Utah and Omaha beaches in Normandy on June 6, 1944, and the president will greet American veterans and their family members while in France to honor their sacrifice,” stated White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre.

The President and First Lady Jill Biden personally met with WWII veterans at the Normandy American Cemetery ahead of a memorial ceremony on Thursday. President Biden handed out commemorative coins to each veteran, engaging them in light conversation, expressing gratitude for their service, and recognizing them as part of “the greatest generation ever.”

Later in the day, President Biden delivered remarks at a commemoration ceremony attended by bipartisan members of Congress, including House Majority Leader Steve Scalise, House Democratic Leader Hakeem Jeffries, and Speaker Emerita Nancy Pelosi. The ceremony not only honored those who fought but also reflected on the enduring impact of their sacrifice.

The D-Day operation, codenamed OVERLORD, was a massive military endeavor involving 7,000 ships and landing craft manned by over 195,000 naval personnel and saw more than 130,000 troops from the U.S., Great Britain, and other allies landing on the shores of Normandy. Their collective efforts were crucial in the eventual defeat of the Axis powers.

In a speech planned for Friday at the Point du Hoc cliffs, President Biden intends to celebrate the bravery of the soldiers who scaled the cliffs 80 years ago, discuss the importance of democracy, and warn against the dangers of isolationism. National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan indicated that the President will also draw parallels between WWII and current global challenges, including the ongoing conflict in Ukraine.

The weekend’s events will include a parade procession to the Elysee Palace and a wreath-laying at the Aisne-Marne American Cemetery, where WWI veterans are interred. President Biden’s itinerary also features a significant meeting with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, reflecting ongoing U.S. support for Ukraine amid Russian aggression.

Additionally, extensive discussions are expected between President Biden and President Macron on topics ranging from the Middle East and Ukraine to the Indo-Pacific, technology, and clean energy. A joint press appearance and a state dinner hosted by Macron are scheduled for Saturday, further highlighting the deep ties between the U.S. and France.



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