Obama welcomes home Vietnam veterans on war's 50th anniversary
May 28th, 2012
04:47 PM ET

Obama welcomes home Vietnam veterans on war's 50th anniversary

During a visit to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington DC on Monday afternoon, President Obama celebrated the 50th anniversary of the start of the Vietnam War by honoring its veterans.

Standing before the dark granite wall bearing the names of the 58,282 Americans who died as a result of the war in Vietnam, Obama touched on the nation’s historically contentious relationship with the veterans from one of its most controversial military engagements.

“One of the most painful chapters in our history was Vietnam, most particularly how we treated our troops who served there,” the president said. “You were often blamed for a war you didn’t start, when you should have been commended for serving your country with valor. You were sometimes blamed for misdeeds of a few, when the honorable service of the many should have been praised. You came home and sometimes were denigrated, when you should have been celebrated. It was a national shame, a disgrace that should have never happened.  And that's why here today we resolve that it will not happen again.”