U.S. President Joe Biden used his Memorial Day speech on Monday to defend America's "imperfect" democracy, calling for more work to deliver the promise of what he said remained "the greatest experiment" in world history.
"The struggle for democracy is taking place around the world - democracy and autocracy. The struggle for decency, dignity, just simple decency," he said
Speaking in the largely empty Arlington Memorial Amphitheater with the nation still in the grip of the coronavirus pandemic, Biden said 7,036 people had died in recent U.S. conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan, serving the ideals of the United States and democracy as a vibrant form of government.
Biden has announced plans to withdraw U.S. troops from Afghanistan this year after the longest ever U.S. overseas engagement.