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This Memorial Day will mark the 50th anniversary of the end of the 10-year-long US operation in Vietnam, which led to the deaths of 58,000 American soldiers.
In a speech to mark the occasion, Barack Obama, the US president, called Vietnam one of the most painful chapters in the nation's history. He also noted that, for the first time in nine years, there are no US soldiers fighting in Iraq.
For some veterans and civilians, however, the continuing war in Afghanistan, the longest in US history, and the memories of the nine-year Iraq war, are still fresh and painful conflicts.
Al Jazeera's John Hendren reports from Washington, DC.