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107th Congress Report
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
2d Session 107-589
TO AUTHORIZE THE PLACEMENT IN ARLINGTON NATIONAL CEMETERY OF A MEMORIAL
HONORING THE WORLD WAR II VETERANS WHO FOUGHT IN THE BATTLE OF THE
July 18, 2002.--Committed to the Committee of the Whole House on the
State of the Union and ordered to be printed
Mr. Smith of New Jersey, from the Committee on Veterans' Affairs,
submitted the following
R E P O R T
[To accompany H.R. 5055]
[Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]
The Committee on Veterans' Affairs, to whom was referred the
bill (H.R. 5055) to authorize the placement in Arlington
National Cemetery of a memorial honoring the World War II
veterans who fought in the Battle of the Bulge, having
considered the same, reports favorably thereon without
amendment and recommends that the bill do pass.
On July 9, 2002, the Subcommittee met and unanimously
ordered H.R. 5055 reported favorably to the full Committee.
On July 16, 2002, the full Committee met and ordered H.R.
5055 reported favorably to the House by voice vote.
Summary of the Reported Bill
H.R. 5055 would:
1. Authorize the Secretary of the Army to place in
Arlington National Cemetery a memorial marker honoring veterans
who fought in the Battle of the Bulge during World War II.
2. Provide the Secretary of the Army exclusive authority
to approve an appropriate design and site for the memorial
Background and Discussion
The Battle of the Bulge is one of the most famous battles
in U.S. history. In September 1944, Adolph Hitler and the
German High Command planned a winter offensive with the
objective of splitting the Allied forces. Hitler believed that
a surprise attack on Allied forces, which had fewer men and
long supply lines, would impel Allied leaders to negotiate an
armistice, after which time the German army could move to
defeat the Soviet Union.
On December 16, 1944, German forces attacked in the
Ardennes Forest area of Belgium, and the Allies were caught off
guard. General Dwight Eisenhower countered and divided the
command of the Allied forces around the ``bulge'' created by
the German offensive. One group was lead by General Bernard Law
Montgomery, British Commander of the Twenty-First Army Group,
the other by General Omar M. Bradley, American Commander of the
Twelfth Army Group. General George Patton's Third Army also
moved in to relieve the defenders of the bulge.
Just weeks into the assault, the Germans began a tactical
withdrawal; by January 28, 1945, Hitler's armies were in full
retreat. The German failure at what became widely known at the
Battle of the Bulge essentially signaled the end of the German
Army. Total German defeat was accomplished within a few months
thereafter; in April 1945 Hitler committed suicide and on May
7, 1945, Germany surrendered.
More than one million men fought in this epic battle, the
largest land battle of World War II. In scope and number of
participants, no American engagement in our history was more
costly or massive. At its conclusion, 62,000 U.S.
servicemembers were wounded and 19,000 were killed, the British
had casualties of 1,400 with 200 killed and 100,000 Germans
were killed, wounded or captured. Winston Churchill called it
``the greatest American battle of the war.''
H.R. 5055 would enable a group of Battle of the Bulge
survivors to replace the modest and decaying plaque at
Arlington National Cemetery commemorating this battle with a
more appropriate memorial.
Section 1(a) would authorize the Secretary of the Army to
place in Arlington National Cemetery a memorial marker honoring
veterans who fought in the European theater of operations
during World War II in the battle known as the Battle of the
Section 1(b) would provide exclusive authority to the
Secretary of the Army to approve an appropriate design and site
within Arlington National Cemetery for the memorial authorized
under subsection (a).
Performance Goals and Objectives
The reported bill would authorize a new memorial in
Arlington National Cemetery commemorating the Battle of the
Bulge. The Cemetery's performance goals and objectives are
established in annual performance plans and are subject to the
Committee's regular oversight.
Statement of the Views of the Administration
The Committee did not request the views of the
Congressional Budget Office Cost Estimate
The following letter was received from the Congressional
Budget Office concerning the cost of the reported bill:
Congressional Budget Office,
Washington, DC, July 17, 2002.
Hon. Christopher H. Smith
Chairman, Committee on Veterans' Affairs,
House of Representatives, Washington, DC.
Dear Mr. Chairman: The Congressional Budget Office has
prepared the enclosed cost estimate for H.R. 5055, a bill to
authorize the placement in Arlington National Cemetery of a
memorial honoring the World War II veterans who fought in the
Battle of the Buldge.
If you wish further details on this estimate, we will be
pleased to provide them. The CBO staff contact is Melissa E.
Zimmerman, who can be reached at 226-2840.
Dan L. Crippen,
Congressional Budget Office Cost Estimate
H.R. 5055, A BILL TO AUTHORIZE THE PLACEMENT IN ARLINGTON NATIONAL
CEMETERY OF A MEMORIAL HONORING THE WORLD WAR II VETERANS WHO FOUGHT IN
THE BATTLE OF THE BULGE, AS ORDERED REPORTED BY THE HOUSE COMMITTEE ON
VETERANS' AFFAIRS ON JULY 16, 2002
H.R. 5055 would authorize the Secretary of the Army to
place a memorial honoring veterans who fought in the Battle of
the Bulge within Arlington National Cemetery. The design and
placement of the memorial would be subject to the Secretary's
Based on information provided by Arlington National
Cemetery, CBO expects that a private veterans organization
would pay for the design and construction of the memorial. The
cemetery would incur costs to construct the foundation for the
memorial, host groundbreaking and dedication ceremonies, and
maintain the memorial. CBO estimates that these costs would be
insignificant. Because the legislation would not affect direct
spending or receipts, pay-as-you-go procedures would not apply.
H.R. 5055 contains no intergovernmental or private-sector
mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act and
would not affect the budgets of state, local, or tribal
The CBO staff contact is Melissa E. Zimmerman. This
estimate was approved by Peter H. Fontaine, Deputy Assistant
Director for Budget Analysis.
Statement of Federal Mandates
The preceding Congressional Budget Office cost estimate
states that the bill contains no intergovernmental or private
sector mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act.
Statement of Constitutional Authority
Pursuant to Article I, section 8, of the United States
Constitution, the reported bill is authorized by Congress'
power to ``provide for the common Defense and general Welfare
of the United States.''