POLITICS
11/11/2014 12:37 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Joe Biden: Military Veterans Are The 'Spine Of The Nation'

WASHINGTON (AP) — Vice President Joe Biden is saluting military veterans, calling them not only the heart and soul, but the spine of the nation.

Biden spoke at Arlington National Cemetery, where he participated in a wreath-laying ceremony in honor of Veterans' Day.

Biden singled out the generation of men and women who joined the armed forces after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. He said the 3.5 million men and women of that 911 military generation made their decision with the near certainty they would be deployed to Iraq or Afghanistan. He noted that more than 2.6 million ended up serving in those wars.

Biden said that the United States has never before "asked so much over such a sustained period of an all-volunteer force."

Below, some photos from the event:

joe biden

Vice President Joe Biden lays a wreath during a ceremony at the Tomb of the Unknowns during Veterans Day observations at Arlington National Cemetery on Nov. 11, 2014, in Arlington, Virginia. Originally established as Armistice Day in 1919, the holiday was renamed Veterans Day in 1954 by President Dwight Eisenhower. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

joe biden

Vice President Joe Biden and U.S. Army Military District of Washington Commanding General Maj. Gen. Jeffrey Buchanan bow their heads during a wreath laying ceremony at the Tomb of the Unknowns during Veterans Day observations at Arlington National Cemetery on Nov. 11, 2014, in Arlington, Virginia. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

joe biden

Vice President Joe Biden and U.S. Army Military District of Washington Commanding General Maj. Gen. Jeffrey Buchanan arrive for a wreath laying ceremony at the Tomb of the Unknowns during Veterans Day observations at Arlington National Cemetery on Nov. 11, 2014, in Arlington, Virginia. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

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