General Sec. Gorbachev, if you seek peace…tear down this wall!

Standing at the Brandenburg Gate on the afternoon of June 12, 1986 president Ronald Reagan made his historic speech that changed the world. Following is the text.

“We welcome change and openness; for we believe that freedom and security go together, that the advance of human liberty can only strengthen the cause of world peace. There is one sign the Soviets can make that would be unmistakable, that would advance dramatically the cause of freedom and peace. General Secretary Gorbachev, if you seek peace, if you seek prosperity for the Soviet Union and eastern Europe, if you seek liberalization, come here to this gate. Mr. Gorbachev, open this gate. Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!”

The Berlin Wall, a 28 mile barrier erected to keep East Berliner’s from escaping to the West, was built in 1961 was breached and ultimately dismantled on November 9, 1989, 20 years ago next week.

Part of president Reagan’s June 8, 1982 speech to Members of the British Parliament sounded the alarm which applies in America today:

“At the same time there is a threat posed to human freedom by the enormous power of the modern state. History teaches the dangers of government that overreaches — political control taking precedence over free economic growth, secret police, mindless bureaucracy, all combining to stifle individual excellence and personal freedom.”

In celebration of that memorable date in world history, where the Berlin Wall was breached, “the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation and Library and the Heritage Foundation will commemorate the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall and the advent of freedom and democracy in Eastern Europe with a one-day conference on Friday, November 6, 2009, at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in California.

Speakers will include: George Shultz, Secretary of State under president Reagan; Richard Allen, former National Security Advisor; Ed Meese, former United States Attorney General; Vaclav Klaus, President of the Czech Republic; Lord Charles Powell, foreign advisor to [UK Prime Minister] Margaret Thatcher; Mart Laar, former Prime Minister of Estonia; as well as other policy makers and Reagan scholars. ”

For additional information on this event or the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library simply click on the following link:

PS: For those who would like to see part of the Berlin Wall there is a five to six foot high section located directly behind the receptionist desk. While at the Library you can even enter the replicated Oval Office or have your photo taken entering Air Force One without flying to Washington, DC.

About Larry Gilbert