WASHINGTON (WUSA9) - Some of the pictures out of Charlottesville have been particularly distressing for American veterans of World War II.
For some of the troops who fought the Nazis, the sight of American neo-Nazis proudly waving swastikas on the street is especially troubling.
At the World War Two Memorial, where gold stars commemorate the more than 400-thousand American dead, even the thought of American neo fascists is alarming to Vietnam War era vet Ken Bermel.
“As a veteran, I think what's going on is a disgrace. I think it's ridiculous that there are people that came to Charlottesville that are in my opinion, anti-American," he said.
Most World War II vets are now in their 90s or older. Never in 100 years did most of them think they'd see Americans marching under the flag of the enemy. Never did some of them think the President would defend some of them as, "Very fine people."
“Well, it's idiotic,” WWII vet Edward Field, 93, told CBS News.
William Johnson, who served with the Tuskegee Airmen, feels the same way. “It's not a better world when the President of the United States gives into racism and bigotry.”
Henry Beckham Jr served in the Army Air Force, and he says there's no place in America for hate speech. “God wrote the Bible. It doesn't say anything in there about the color of the skin makes one better than the other.”
The philosopher George Santayana wrote that "Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it."
The vets are urging us to remember.
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