The United States Department of Defense recently observed its 15th annual Iftar dinner at the Pentagon in celebration of the Islamic holiday Ramadan.

According to a report from the U.S. Army, the event was attended by senior defense leaders, White House and Congressional staffers, imams, Muslim employees and other supporters of the Muslim religion.

"The month of Ramadan focuses on a lot of things," Colonel Thomas Waynick, the Pentagon chaplain, told reporters. "Among them, focusing one's heart away from worldly activities, the cleansing of one's soul to free it from harmful impurities, and the practices of self-discipline, self-control, sacrifice and empathy, especially with the less fortunate, and thus encouraging generosity and charity. These things are common to many of the world's religions."

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