Today in 1953, the United States and the South Korean governments signed an armistice agreement with Soviet-backed North Koreans to officially end the fighting on the Korean peninsula. Lieutenant General William Harrison, Jr., representing the United Nations Command, signed the armistice agreement with North Korean General Nam II at Panmunjom.

The United States joined in this effort to fight the advance of oppression across the Asian continent after World War II, and thousands sacrificed their lives so that freedom could be preserved. Korea continues as a free society thanks to the 33,652 Americans who helped repel the Northern invasion of the Soviet-backed forces lead by Kim Il-sung. Though it was not a popular war, the men and women who fought in Korea did so with bravery and honor, even in the face of disapproval at home.

At the Concerned Veterans for American Foundation, we are thankful to those who gave their lives to protect freedom for the South Korean people. As Ronald Reagan said, “Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction.” Just as Americans fought with South Korea to secure their freedom, we must continue to be vigilant and ensure the principles of our founding never depart from our national conscience.