On behalf of the American people, I congratulate the Republic of Korea, and all those of Korean descent in the United States and around the world, on the celebration of their Independence Day on August 15. In the sixty-two years since the founding of the Republic of Korea, our two nations have enjoyed a strong and enduring alliance. We are bound by a common belief in the values of democracy and freedom. Sixty years ago, Communist armies came across the 38th parallel and threatened the very survival of the Republic of Korea. Our alliance was as necessary then as it is now. As I said during my visit to Seoul last fall, our commitment to the security and defense of the Republic of Korea will never waver. Here, in the United States, Korean Americans have contributed greatly to our nation in all facets of life, from business and science to sports, the arts, and public service. I send my best wishes on this year's Korean Independence Day.