Part of what poliicians do -- in their spare time when they're not lining their pockets or conducting ideological thermonuclear warfare in America's fallowed halls -- is tell people what they'd prefer to believe.
This, of course, exists in stark contrast to what actually is. Or was. Or will be.
Enter President Obama, speaking to a group of aging Korean War veterans on this, the 60th anniversary of the armistice that silenced the guns but never formally ended the war:
When the war ended with a cease-fire rather than a surrender, Mr. Obama noted, some offered the cynical quip "die for a tie" to describe the result of the war that had claimed the lives of more than 36,000 Americans and over a million South Koreans.THIS, of course is revisionist history. It is ascribing a ex post facto point to what many, if not most, Americans saw as pointless six decades ago.
But "that war was no tie," the president said as he stood before thousands of veterans and their families on the National Mall, within sight of the Korean War Memorial. "Korea was a victory."
As a result of the heroism of those who fought, he said, tens of millions of South Koreans are able to thrive in a free and prosperous country instead of living under the thumb of tyranny in North Korea.
"Let it be said that Korea was the first battle where freedom held its ground and free peoples refused to yield," he said. To the veterans and their families, he added, "You have the thanks of a grateful nation and your shining deeds will live now and forever."
And no one -- no one, save the communist Chinese -- was declaring victory in the Korean conflict. As one network radio commentator said on this day in 1953, how do you declare victory when no one's keeping score, when you have no clear objectives?
Gosh, this sounds familiar.
The commentator went on to liken the Korean War to a football game where the field has no goalposts and the entire objective is to keep the other team from crossing the 50-yard line. In other words, contra Barack Obama's revisionism, "Die for a tie."
It is what you settle for when "making the world safe for democracy" doesn't exactly work out.
HERE, THEN, is what we were really saying about Korea when the all the firing was freshly ceased. It comes from an old, old reel-to-reel tape made by an Omaha doctor who thought the moment momentous enough to electronically scrapbook for future generations . . . and then salvaged by this future generation at an estate sale a decade ago.