Remembering Iwo Jima

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This week we remember two great presidents. But we also remember the sacrifice of thousands of great men who never lived long enough to rise to prominence.

Sixty years ago this week, a U.S. assault began on a dry spit of land in the Pacific called Iwo Jima (search) — 110,000 of our troops went up against a group of 21,000 Japanese dead-enders, each committed to kill 10 Americans before they died. Our troops prevailed, but at a great cost — 6,821 Americans died at Iwo Jima. Just getting on the island took heroic efforts. Some 2,300 Marines were killed or wounded in the first 18 hours.

The famous photo reenacting the raising of the flag on Mt. Suribachi on February 23 was not the end but just the beginning of a month more of fighting. In fact, three of the six men in that photo were later killed in Iwo Jima.

The president is in Europe (search), where the Europeans have expressed some surprise that the Americans stuck by their commitment to carry off elections in Iraq. Perhaps now the Europeans understand that America’s history is not stagnant. That the Marines in Iwo Jima and Fallujah (search), share more than an enemy with no respect for life or freedom. They share a vision that lives with every generation: that our commitment to and defense of freedom, laid out by our founding fathers, will never die.

And that’s the Asman Observer.

Watch David Asman on "FOX News Live" weekdays at noon ET.