Defense Secretary Carter adresses American Legion convention

U.S. Defense Secretary Ashton Carter addressed approximately 5,000 delegates from American Legion posts from around the country at the 97th American Legion National Convention in Baltimore on Tuesday.

Carter emphasized the need to defend those who defend the nation and a national security strategy that meets this century’s needs and plans for the force of the future.

“Few others know better than you: Our greatest responsibility is to make sure we never put a single one of America's brave sons or daughters or their families in harm’s way without the greatest care and reflection about why we’re doing it and how it benefits our nation,” Carter said.

Carter said in the next few years, approximately 1.5 million veterans from the 9/11 generation will join the 2.5 million people who have already left the military.

“How do we lay a foundation for veteran support needed 10, 20 (or) 30 years from now,” Carter said. "How do we stay relevant and attract new leaders who will carry forth our missions?”

In his address, Carter touched on current and future threats, the military’s need to accept change and the personnel changes that are under consideration.

“To stay the best, we must keep our focus on our greatest strength, our people,” Carter said. “If we do right by our people … America’s security will be assured for generations to come.”

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