The White House on Monday defended President Biden after he failed to acknowledge the 77th anniversary of D-Day on Sunday, saying he values the role of the men and women who serve, and that his memory of them is “close to his heart.”
“His value for the role of the men who served on D-Day, and his memory of them is something the president has spoken to many times in the past,” White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Monday.
BIDEN SNUBS D-DAY’S 77TH ANNIVERSARY, ANGERING VETERANS
“It’s close to his heart,” she said. “I wouldn’t be surprised if there is more we have to say on it.”
The White House’s defense comes after a Homeland Security source told Fox News that service members and veterans were upset after Biden failed to acknowledge the 77th anniversary of D-Day on Sunday.
The source told Fox News the fact that Vice President Harris tweeted about D-Day while Biden tweeted about the 1921 Tulsa Massacre on Sunday clearly underscores the administration’s priorities. Roughly 2,500 Americans died on D-Day.
A search through the White House website and social media turns up only two tweets from Harris and first lady Jill Biden mentioning the day when U.S. soldiers stormed Normandy to liberate France from the Nazis, turning the tides in favor of the Allies during World War II. The day is typically honored by the American president.
“On the 77th anniversary of #DDay, we honor the heroes who stormed the beaches of Normandy and liberated a continent. We will never forget their courage and sacrifice,” Harris wrote on Twitter on Sunday.
Jill Biden also shared a D-Day message.
“77 years ago, families gathered around radios and heard FDR pray for a ‘peace that will let all of men live in freedom, reaping the just rewards of their honest toil.’ Let us never forget those who fought, their families, or sacrifices, and let us always pray for peace. #DDay,” the first lady wrote on Twitter.
The president did honor fallen service members, including those who died on D-Day in his Memorial Day remarks last week.
“War and conflict, death and loss are not relics of our American history; they’re a part of Americans’ story. Here in Arlington lie heroes who gave what President Lincoln called ‘the last full measure of devotion,’” Biden said. “They did not only die at Gettysburg or in Flanders Field or on the beaches of Normandy, but in the mountains of Afghanistan, the deserts of Iraq in the last 20 years.”
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Former Presidents George W. Bush, Barack Obama and Donald Trump all acknowledged the anniversary of D-Day in some capacity in their first year in office. Bush commemorated D-Day’s 57th anniversary in a speech in Bedford City, Virginia, in 2001. Obama traveled to Normandy, France, for the 65th anniversary in 2009.
Fox News’ Peter Doocy, Evie Fordham and Gillian Turner contributed to this report.