Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
February 13, 2016

World War II Historian Not Surprised by Vets Storming the Memorial

One of the iconic moments of the government shutdown happened Tuesday, when World War II veterans, some in wheelchairs, stormed the barricades set up around the National World War II Memorial, defying the shuttering of the site. Rick Atkinson, the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of the famed Liberation Trilogy of World War II, wasn’t the least surprised.

World War II veterans were not about to be denied. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call.)

World War II veterans were not about to be denied on their visit to D.C. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call.)

“Well, I think if you’re going to put up barricades, you’d better remember that these are the guys who managed to storm Omaha Beach and Tarawa and Iwo Jima. So the odds are that few Park Service barricades, even if they are octogenarians and older at this point, aren’t going to do much to thwart them,” Atkinson told CQ Roll Call.

Atkinson, whose final part of the trilogy, “The Guns at Last Light: The War in Western Europe, 1944-1945,” was released in May, will be reading from his latest and discussing it as part of the Roll Call Book Club on Oct. 9 at 77 K St. NE. Free, from 6 p.m.-8 p.m. To register for the event, go here.


  • Liberalism is Nonsense

    Whereas liberty offers freedom for all, collectivism offers freedom only for those who are self-proclaimed to be “the good and the wise”.

  • Layla

    God bless these men. They are the last of the real heroes and leaders in this country. And they are having to fight to just see their own memorial.

    But the President can still play golf for free on their golf courses! Do you see what’s wrong with this picture?

  • John Rivas

    If it seems that central governments regard themselves as omnipotent, it is likely because they cite necessity to justify foolish actions.

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