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← President Obama Addresses the British Parliament

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Showing Revision 3 created 07/03/2014 by Syed Hasan.

  1. Speaker:
    Mr. President,
    ladies and gentlemen,

  2. history is more than the
    path left by the past.
  3. It influences the present
    and can shape the future.
  4. We meet today in
    Westminster Hall,
  5. a building begun 900 years ago
    when the Vikings were visiting
  6. the shores of what would
    become the United States,
  7. even if it was Columbus who
    would subsequently demonstrate
  8. the politician's art
    of arriving late,
  9. but claiming all the credit.
  10. (laughter)
  11. This hall has witnessed grim
    trials in the sentencing to
  12. death of a king, coronation
    banquets, ceremonial addresses,
  13. and the coffins of those
    receiving the last respects of
  14. our people.
  15. Few places reach so far into
    the heart of our nation.
  16. Yet until today, no American
    president has stood on these
  17. steps to address our
    country's Parliament.
  18. It is my honor, Mr. President,
    to welcome you as our friend and
  19. as a statesman.
  20. Statesmanship is the cement
    which seals our shared idealism
  21. as nations.
  22. It makes meaningful the unity of
    ambition, passion for freedom,
  23. and abhorrence of injustice
    that is the call of our
  24. close alliance.
  25. It has fallen to you to tackle
    economic turbulence at home,
  26. to protect the health
    of those without wealth,
  27. and to seek that precious
    balance between security which
  28. is too often threatened, and
    human rights which are too
  29. often denied.
  30. History is not the burden of
    any one man or woman alone.
  31. But some are called to
    meet a special share of
  32. it's challenges.
  33. It is a duty that you discharge
    with a dignity, determination,
  34. and distinction that
    are widely admired.
  35. Abraham Lincoln once observed
    that nearly all men can
  36. stand adversity.
  37. But if you want to test a man's
    character, give him power.
  38. Ladies and gentlemen, the
    President of the United States
  39. of America, Barack Obama.
  40. (applause)
  41. President Obama:
    Thank you very much.
  42. (applause)
  43. Thank you very much.
  44. Thank you.
  45. (applause)
  46. Thank you.
  47. (applause)
  48. Thank you so much.
  49. (applause)
  50. My Lord Chancellor, Mr. Speaker,
    Mr. Prime Minister, my lords,
  51. and members of the
    House of Commons:
  52. I have known few greater honors
    than the opportunity to address
  53. the Mother of Parliaments
    at Westminster Hall.
  54. I am told that the last three
    speakers here have been the
  55. Pope, Her Majesty the
    Queen, and Nelson Mandela --
  56. which is either a very high
    bar or the beginning of a very
  57. funny joke.
  58. (laughter)
  59. I come here today to
    reaffirm one of the oldest,
  60. one of the strongest alliances
    the world has ever known.
  61. It's long been said that the
    United States and the United
  62. Kingdom share a
    special relationship.
  63. And since we also share an
    especially active press corps,
  64. that relationship is often
    analyzed and overanalyzed
  65. for the slightest hint
    of stress or strain.
  66. Of course, all relationships
    have their ups and downs.
  67. Admittedly, ours got off on the
    wrong foot with a small scrape
  68. about tea and taxes.
  69. (laughter)
  70. There may also have been
    some hurt feelings when the
  71. White House was set on fire
    during the War of 1812.
  72. (laughter)
  73. But fortunately, it's been
    smooth sailing ever since.
  74. The reason for this close
    friendship doesn't just have
  75. to do with our shared history,
    our shared heritage;
  76. our ties of language
    and culture;
  77. or even the strong partnership
    between our governments.
  78. Our relationship is special
    because of the values and
  79. beliefs that have united
    our people through the ages.
  80. Centuries ago, when
    kings, emperors,
  81. and warlords reigned
    over much of the world,
  82. it was the English who first
    spelled out the rights and
  83. liberties of man
    in the Magna Carta.
  84. It was here, in this very hall,
    where the rule of law first
  85. developed, courts
    were established,
  86. disputes were settled, and
    citizens came to petition
  87. their leaders.
  88. Over time, the people of
    this nation waged a long and
  89. sometimes bloody struggle
    to expand and secure their
  90. freedom from the crown.
  91. Propelled by the ideals
    of the Enlightenment,
  92. they would ultimately forge
    an English Bill of Rights,
  93. and invest the power to govern
    in an elected parliament that's
  94. gathered here today.
  95. What began on this island would
    inspire millions throughout the
  96. continent of Europe
    and across the world.
  97. But perhaps no one drew greater
    inspiration from these notions
  98. of freedom than your
    rabble-rousing colonists
  99. on the other side
    of the Atlantic.
  100. As Winston Churchill
    said, the "...Magna Carta,
  101. the Bill of Rights, Habeas
    Corpus, trial by jury,
  102. and English common law find
    their most famous expression in
  103. the American Declaration
    of Independence."
  104. For both of our nations, living
    up to the ideals enshrined in
  105. these founding documents has
    sometimes been difficult,
  106. has always been a
    work in progress.
  107. The path has never been perfect.
  108. But through the struggles
    of slaves and immigrants,
  109. women and ethnic minorities,
    former colonies and persecuted
  110. religions, we have learned
    better than most that the
  111. longing for freedom and human
    dignity is not English or
  112. American or Western
    -- it is universal,
  113. and it beats in every heart.
  114. Perhaps that's why there are
    few nations that stand firmer,
  115. speak louder, and fight harder
    to defend democratic values
  116. around the world than the United
    States and the United Kingdom.
  117. We are the allies who
    landed at Omaha and Gold,
  118. who sacrificed side by side to
    free a continent from the march
  119. of tyranny, and help prosperity
    flourish from the ruins of war.
  120. And with the founding of
    NATO -- a British idea --
  121. we joined a transatlantic
    alliance that has ensured our
  122. security for over
    half a century.
  123. Together with our allies,
    we forged a lasting peace
  124. from a cold war.
  125. When the Iron Curtain lifted, we
    expanded our alliance to include
  126. the nations of Central
    and Eastern Europe,
  127. and built new bridges to Russia
    and the former states of the
  128. Soviet Union.
  129. And when there was
    strife in the Balkans,
  130. we worked together
    to keep the peace.
  131. Today, after a difficult decade
    that began with war and ended in
  132. recession, our nations have
    arrived at a pivotal moment
  133. once more.
  134. A global economy that once stood
    on the brink of depression is
  135. now stable and recovering.
  136. After years of conflict, the
    United States has removed
  137. 100,000 troops from Iraq, the
    United Kingdom has removed its
  138. forces, and our combat
    mission there has ended.
  139. In Afghanistan, we've broken the
    Taliban's momentum and will soon
  140. begin a transition
    to Afghan lead.
  141. And nearly 10 years after 9/11,
    we have disrupted terrorist
  142. networks and dealt al Qaeda a
    huge blow by killing its leader
  143. -- Osama bin Laden.
  144. Together, we have
    met great challenges.
  145. But as we enter this new
    chapter in our shared history,
  146. profound challenges
    stretch out before us.
  147. In a world where the prosperity
    of all nations is now
  148. inextricably linked, a new era
    of cooperation is required to
  149. ensure the growth and stability
    of the global economy.
  150. As new threats spread
    across borders and oceans,
  151. we must dismantle terrorist
    networks and stop the spread
  152. of nuclear weapons, confront
    climate change and combat
  153. famine and disease.
  154. And as a revolution races
    through the streets of the
  155. Middle East and North Africa,
    the entire world has a stake
  156. in the aspirations of a
    generation that longs to
  157. determine its own destiny.
  158. These challenges come at a time
    when the international order has
  159. already been reshaped
    for a new century.
  160. Countries like China, India,
    and Brazil are growing by
  161. leaps and bounds.
  162. We should welcome
    this development,
  163. for it has lifted hundreds of
    millions from poverty around
  164. the globe, and created new
    markets and opportunities
  165. for our own nations.
  166. And yet, as this rapid
    change has taken place,
  167. it's become fashionable in some
    quarters to question whether the
  168. rise of these nations will
    accompany the decline of
  169. American and European
    influence around the world.
  170. Perhaps, the argument goes,
    these nations represent the
  171. future, and the time for
    our leadership has passed.
  172. That argument is wrong.
  173. The time for our
    leadership is now.
  174. It was the United States and
    the United Kingdom and our
  175. democratic allies that shaped a
    world in which new nations could
  176. emerge and individuals
    could thrive.
  177. And even as more nations take on
    the responsibilities of global
  178. leadership, our alliance will
    remain indispensable to the goal
  179. of a century that
    is more peaceful,
  180. more prosperous and more just.
  181. At a time when threats and
    challenges require nations
  182. to work in concert
    with one another,
  183. we remain the greatest
    catalysts for global action.
  184. In an era defined by the
    rapid flow of commerce and
  185. information, it is our free
    market tradition, our openness,
  186. fortified by our commitment to
    basic security for our citizens,
  187. that offers the best chance
    of prosperity that is both
  188. strong and shared.
  189. As millions are still denied
    their basic human rights because
  190. of who they are, or
    what they believe,
  191. or the kind of government
    that they live under,
  192. we are the nations most willing
    to stand up for the values of
  193. tolerance and self-determination
    that lead to peace and dignity.
  194. Now, this doesn't mean we
    can afford to stand still.
  195. The nature of our leadership will
    need to change with the times.
  196. As I said the first time I
    came to London as President,
  197. for the G20 summit, the days
    are gone when Roosevelt and
  198. Churchill could sit in a room
    and solve the world's problems
  199. over a glass of brandy --
    although I'm sure that Prime
  200. Minister Cameron would agree
    that some days we could both
  201. use a stiff drink.
  202. (laughter)
  203. In this century, our joint
    leadership will require
  204. building new partnerships,
    adapting to new circumstances,
  205. and remaking ourselves to meet
    the demands of a new era.
  206. That begins with our
    economic leadership.
  207. Adam Smith's central insight
    remains true today: There is no
  208. greater generator of wealth and
    innovation than a system of free
  209. enterprise that unleashes the
    full potential of individual
  210. men and women.
  211. That's what led to the
    Industrial Revolution that began
  212. in the factories of Manchester.
  213. That is what led to the dawn of
    the Information Age that arose
  214. from the office parks
    of Silicon Valley.
  215. That's why countries like China,
    India and Brazil are growing so
  216. rapidly -- because
    in fits and starts,
  217. they are moving toward
    market-based principles that
  218. the United States and the United
    Kingdom have always embraced.
  219. In other words, we live in a
    global economy that is largely
  220. of our own making.
  221. And today, the competition for
    the best jobs and industries
  222. favors countries that
    are free-thinking and
  223. forward-looking; countries with
    the most creative and innovative
  224. and entrepreneurial citizens.
  225. That gives nations like the
    United States and the United
  226. Kingdom an inherent advantage.
  227. For from Newton and Darwin
    to Edison and Einstein,
  228. from Alan Turing to Steve Jobs,
    we have led the world in our
  229. commitment to science and
    cutting-edge research,
  230. the discovery of new
    medicines and technologies.
  231. We educate our citizens and
    train our workers in the best
  232. colleges and
    universities on Earth.
  233. But to maintain this advantage
    in a world that's more
  234. competitive than ever, we will
    have to redouble our investments
  235. in science and engineering, and
    renew our national commitments
  236. to educating our workforces.
  237. We've also been reminded in the
    last few years that markets can
  238. sometimes fail.
  239. In the last century, both our
    nations put in place regulatory
  240. frameworks to deal with such
    market failures -- safeguards
  241. to protect the banking system
    after the Great Depression,
  242. for example; regulations that
    were established to prevent the
  243. pollution of our air and
    our water during the 1970s.
  244. But in today's economy, such
    threats of market failure can
  245. no longer be contained within
    the borders of any one country.
  246. Market failures can go
    global, and go viral,
  247. and demand international responses.
  248. A financial crisis that began
    on Wall Street infected nearly
  249. every continent, which is why we
    must keep working through forums
  250. like the G20 to put in place
    global rules of the road to
  251. prevent future
    excesses and abuse.
  252. No country can hide from the
    dangers of carbon pollution,
  253. which is why we must build on
    what was achieved at Copenhagen
  254. and Cancun to leave our
    children a planet that
  255. is safer and cleaner.
  256. Moreover, even when the free
    market works as it should,
  257. both our countries recognize
    that no matter how responsibly
  258. we live in our lives,
    hard times or bad luck,
  259. a crippling illness or a layoff
    may strike any one of us.
  260. And so part of our common
    tradition has expressed itself
  261. in a conviction that every
    citizen deserves a basic measure
  262. of security -- health
    care if you get sick,
  263. unemployment insurance
    if you lose your job,
  264. a dignified retirement after
    a lifetime of hard work.
  265. That commitment to our citizens
    has also been the reason for our
  266. leadership in the world.
  267. And now, having come through
    a terrible recession,
  268. our challenge is to meet these
    obligations while ensuring that
  269. we're not consuming -- and hence
    consumed -- with a level of debt
  270. that could sap the strength
    and vitality of our economies.
  271. And that will require difficult
    choices and it will require
  272. different paths for
    both of our countries.
  273. But we have faced such
    challenges before,
  274. and have always been able to
    balance the need for fiscal
  275. responsibility with the
    responsibilities we have
  276. to one another.
  277. And I believe we
    can do this again.
  278. As we do, the successes and
    failures of our own past can
  279. serve as an example for emerging
    economies -- that it's possible
  280. to grow without polluting; that
    lasting prosperity comes not
  281. from what a nation consumes,
    but from what it produces,
  282. and from the investments
    it makes in its people
  283. and its infrastructure.
  284. And just as we must lead on
    behalf of the prosperity of
  285. our citizens, so we must
    safeguard their security.
  286. Our two nations know what it is
    to confront evil in the world.
  287. Hitler's armies would not have
    stopped their killing had we not
  288. fought them on the beaches
    and on the landing grounds,
  289. in the fields and
    on the streets.
  290. We must never forget that there
    was nothing inevitable about our
  291. victory in that terrible war.
  292. It was won through the courage
    and character of our people.
  293. Precisely because we are
    willing to bear its burden,
  294. we know well the cost of war.
  295. And that is why we built an
    alliance that was strong enough
  296. to defend this continent
    while deterring our enemies.
  297. At its core, NATO is rooted in
    the simple concept of Article
  298. Five: that no NATO nation
    will have to fend on its own;
  299. that allies will stand
    by one another, always.
  300. And for six decades, NATO
    has been the most successful
  301. alliance in human history.
  302. Today, we confront
    a different enemy.
  303. Terrorists have taken the lives
    of our citizens in New York and
  304. in London.
  305. And while al Qaeda seeks a
    religious war with the West,
  306. we must remember that they have
    killed thousands of Muslims --
  307. men, women and children
    -- around the globe.
  308. Our nations are not and will
    never be at war with Islam.
  309. Our fight is focused on
    defeating al Qaeda and
  310. its extremist allies.
  311. In that effort, we
    will not relent,
  312. as Osama bin Laden and his
    followers have learned.
  313. And as we fight an enemy
    that respects no law of war,
  314. we will continue to hold
    ourselves to a higher standard
  315. -- by living up to the values,
    the rule of law and due process
  316. that we so ardently defend.
  317. For almost a decade, Afghanistan
    has been a central front of
  318. these efforts.
  319. Throughout those years,
    you, the British people,
  320. have been a stalwart ally, along
    with so many others who fight by
  321. our side.
  322. Together, let us pay tribute to
    all of our men and women who
  323. have served and sacrificed over
    the last several years -- for
  324. they are part of an unbroken
    line of heroes who have borne
  325. the heaviest burden for the
    freedoms that we enjoy.
  326. Because of them, we have
    broken the Taliban's momentum.
  327. Because of them, we have
    built the capacity of
  328. Afghan security forces.
  329. And because of them, we are now
    preparing to turn a corner in
  330. Afghanistan by transitioning
    to Afghan lead.
  331. And during this transition, we
    will pursue a lasting peace with
  332. those who break free of al
    Qaeda and respect the Afghan
  333. constitution and lay down arms.
  334. And we will ensure that
    Afghanistan is never a safe
  335. haven for terror, but is instead
    a country that is strong,
  336. sovereign, and able to
    stand on its own two feet.
  337. Indeed, our efforts in this
    young century have led us to
  338. a new concept for NATO that will
    give us the capabilities needed
  339. to meet new threats -- threats
    like terrorism and piracy,
  340. cyber attacks and
    ballistic missiles.
  341. But a revitalized NATO will
    continue to hew to that original
  342. vision of its founders, allowing
    us to rally collective action
  343. for the defense of our people,
    while building upon the broader
  344. belief of Roosevelt and
    Churchill that all nations
  345. have both rights and
    responsibilities,
  346. and all nations share a common
    interest in an international
  347. architecture that
    maintains the peace.
  348. We also share a common interest
    in stopping the spread of
  349. nuclear weapons.
  350. Across the globe, nations are
    locking down nuclear materials
  351. so they never fall into
    the wrong hands -- because
  352. of our leadership.
  353. From North Korea to Iran, we've
    sent a message that those who
  354. flaunt their obligations will
    face consequences -- which is
  355. why America and the European
    Union just recently strengthened
  356. our sanctions on Iran, in large
    part because of the leadership
  357. of the United Kingdom
    and the United States.
  358. And while we hold
    others to account,
  359. we will meet our own obligations
    under the Non-Proliferation
  360. Treaty, and strive for a world
    without nuclear weapons.
  361. We share a common interest in
    resolving conflicts that prolong
  362. human suffering and threaten
    to tear whole regions asunder.
  363. In Sudan, after years of
    war and thousands of deaths,
  364. we call on both North and South
    to pull back from the brink of
  365. violence and choose
    the path of peace.
  366. And in the Middle East, we stand
    united in our support for a
  367. secure Israel and a
    sovereign Palestine.
  368. And we share a common interest
    in development that advances
  369. dignity and security.
  370. To succeed, we must cast
    aside the impulse to look
  371. at impoverished parts of the
    globe as a place for charity.
  372. Instead, we should empower the
    same forces that have allowed
  373. our own people to thrive: We
    should help the hungry to feed
  374. themselves, the doctors
    who care for the sick.
  375. We should support countries
    that confront corruption,
  376. and allow their
    people to innovate.
  377. And we should advance the truth
    that nations prosper when they
  378. allow women and girls to
    reach their full potential.
  379. We do these things because we
    believe not simply in the rights
  380. of nations; we believe in
    the rights of citizens.
  381. That is the beacon that guided
    us through our fight against
  382. fascism and our twilight
    struggle against communism.
  383. And today, that idea is being
    put to the test in the Middle
  384. East and North Africa.
  385. In country after country,
    people are mobilizing to
  386. free themselves from the
    grip of an iron fist.
  387. And while these movements for
    change are just six months old,
  388. we have seen them play out
    before -- from Eastern Europe
  389. to the Americas, from South
    Africa to Southeast Asia.
  390. History tells us that
    democracy is not easy.
  391. It will be years before these
    revolutions reach their
  392. conclusion, and there will be
    difficult days along the way.
  393. Power rarely gives up without a
    fight -- particularly in places
  394. where there are divisions of
    tribe and divisions of sect.
  395. We also know that populism can
    take dangerous turns -- from the
  396. extremism of those who would
    use democracy to deny minority
  397. rights, to the nationalism that
    left so many scars on this
  398. continent in the 20th century.
  399. But make no mistake:
    What we saw,
  400. what we are seeing in Tehran,
    in Tunis, in Tahrir Square,
  401. is a longing for the same
    freedoms that we take for
  402. granted here at home.
  403. It was a rejection of the notion
    that people in certain parts of
  404. the world don't want to be
    free, or need to have democracy
  405. imposed upon them.
  406. It was a rebuke to the
    worldview of al Qaeda,
  407. which smothers the
    rights of individuals,
  408. and would thereby subject
    them to perpetual poverty
  409. and violence.
  410. Let there be no doubt: The
    United States and United Kingdom
  411. stand squarely on the side of
    those who long to be free.
  412. And now, we must show that
    we will back up those words
  413. with deeds.
  414. That means investing in the
    future of those nations that
  415. transition to democracy,
    starting with Tunisia and Egypt
  416. -- by deepening ties
    of trade and commerce;
  417. by helping them demonstrate
    that freedom brings prosperity.
  418. And that means standing
    up for universal rights
  419. -- by sanctioning those
    who pursue repression,
  420. strengthening civil
    society, supporting
  421. the rights of minorities.
  422. We do this knowing that the West
    must overcome suspicion and
  423. mistrust among many in the
    Middle East and North Africa
  424. -- a mistrust that is
    rooted in a difficult past.
  425. For years, we've faced charges
    of hypocrisy from those who do
  426. not enjoy the freedoms
    that they hear us espouse.
  427. And so to them, we must
    squarely acknowledge that, yes,
  428. we have enduring interests in
    the region -- to fight terror,
  429. sometimes with partners
    who may not be perfect;
  430. to protect against disruptions
    of the world's energy supply.
  431. But we must also insist that
    we reject as false the choice
  432. between our interests
    and our ideals;
  433. between stability and democracy.
  434. For our idealism is rooted in
    the realities of history -- that
  435. repression offers only the
    false promise of stability,
  436. that societies are more
    successful when their citizens
  437. are free, and that democracies
    are the closest allies we have.
  438. It is that truth that
    guides our action in Libya.
  439. It would have been easy at the
    outset of the crackdown in Libya
  440. to say that none of this was
    our business -- that a nation's
  441. sovereignty is more important
    than the slaughter of civilians
  442. within its borders.
  443. That argument carries
    weight with some.
  444. But we are different.
  445. We embrace a broader responsibility.
  446. And while we cannot
    stop every injustice,
  447. there are circumstances that cut
    through our caution -- when a
  448. leader is threatening
    to massacre his people,
  449. and the international community
    is calling for action.
  450. That's why we stopped
    a massacre in Libya.
  451. And we will not relent until the
    people of Libya are protected
  452. and the shadow of
    tyranny is lifted.
  453. We will proceed with humility,
    and the knowledge that we cannot
  454. dictate every outcome abroad.
  455. Ultimately, freedom must be
    won by the people themselves,
  456. not imposed from without.
  457. But we can and must stand
    with those who so struggle.
  458. Because we have always believed
    that the future of our children
  459. and grandchildren will be better
    if other people's children and
  460. grandchildren are more
    prosperous and more free
  461. -- from the beaches of Normandy
    to the Balkans to Benghazi.
  462. That is our interests
    and our ideals.
  463. And if we fail to meet
    that responsibility,
  464. who would take our place,
    and what kind of world would
  465. we pass on?
  466. Our action -- our leadership
    -- is essential to the cause
  467. of human dignity.
  468. And so we must
    act -- and lead --
  469. with confidence in our ideals,
    and an abiding faith in the
  470. character of our people,
    who sent us all here today.
  471. For there is one final quality
    that I believe makes the United
  472. States and the United
    Kingdom indispensable
  473. to this moment in history.
  474. And that is how we define
    ourselves as nations.
  475. Unlike most countries
    in the world,
  476. we do not define citizenship
    based on race or ethnicity.
  477. Being American or British is not
    about belonging to a certain
  478. group; it's about believing
    in a certain set of ideals --
  479. the rights of individuals,
    the rule of law.
  480. That is why we hold incredible
    diversity within our borders.
  481. That's why there are people
    around the world right now
  482. who believe that if
    they come to America,
  483. if they come to New York,
    if they come to London,
  484. if they work hard, they can
    pledge allegiance to our flag
  485. and call themselves Americans;
    if they come to England,
  486. they can make a new life for
    themselves and can sing God
  487. Save The Queen just
    like any other citizen.
  488. Yes, our diversity
    can lead to tension.
  489. And throughout our history there
    have been heated debates about
  490. immigration and assimilation
    in both of our countries.
  491. But even as these
    debates can be difficult,
  492. we fundamentally recognize that
    our patchwork heritage is an
  493. enormous strength -- that in
    a world which will only grow
  494. smaller and more interconnected,
    the example of our two nations
  495. says it is possible for people
    to be united by their ideals,
  496. instead of divided
    by their differences;
  497. that it's possible for hearts to
    change and old hatreds to pass;
  498. that it's possible for the sons
    and daughters of former colonies
  499. to sit here as members
    of this great Parliament,
  500. and for the grandson of a Kenyan
    who served as a cook in the
  501. British Army to stand
    before you as President
  502. of the United States.
  503. (applause)
  504. That is what defines us.
  505. That is why the young men and
    women in the streets of Damascus
  506. and Cairo still reach for the
    rights our citizens enjoy,
  507. even if they sometimes
    differ with our policies.
  508. As two of the most powerful
    nations in the history of the
  509. world, we must always remember
    that the true source of our
  510. influence hasn't just been
    the size of our economies,
  511. or the reach of our militaries,
    or the land that we've claimed.
  512. It has been the values that we
    must never waver in defending
  513. around the world -- the idea
    that all beings are endowed
  514. by our Creator with certain
    rights that cannot be denied.
  515. That is what forged our bond
    in the fire of war -- a bond
  516. made manifest by the
    friendship between two
  517. of our greatest leaders.
  518. Churchill and Roosevelt
    had their differences.
  519. They were keen observers of
    each other's blind spots and
  520. shortcomings, if not
    always their own,
  521. and they were hard-headed
    about their ability to
  522. remake the world.
  523. But what joined the fates of
    these two men at that particular
  524. moment in history was not simply
    a shared interest in victory on
  525. the battlefield.
  526. It was a shared belief in the
    ultimate triumph of human
  527. freedom and human dignity -- a
    conviction that we have a say
  528. in how this story ends.
  529. This conviction lives on
    in their people today.
  530. The challenges we
    face are great.
  531. The work before us is hard.
  532. But we have come through
    a difficult decade,
  533. and whenever the tests and
    trials ahead may seem too big
  534. or too many, let us
    turn to their example,
  535. and the words that Churchill
    spoke on the day that Europe was
  536. freed: "In the
    long years to come,
  537. not only will the people of this
    island but...the world, wherever
  538. the bird of freedom
    chirps in the human heart,
  539. look back to what we've done,
    and they will say 'do not
  540. despair, do not yield...
    march straightforward.'"
  541. With courage and purpose,
    with humility and with hope,
  542. with faith in the
    promise of tomorrow,
  543. let us march
    straightforward together,
  544. enduring allies in the cause of
    a world that is more peaceful,
  545. more prosperous, and more just.
  546. Thank you very much.
  547. (applause)
  548. Speaker:
    Mr. President, I think that
    response describes far more
  549. eloquently than any words of
    mine could do how much that very
  550. memorable and inspiring address
    was appreciated by everybody who
  551. heard it here today.
  552. You spoke --
  553. (applause)
  554. You spoke with great warmth
    and great generosity about the
  555. British Parliament and the
    British people and about the
  556. links that bind us, the
    values and the traditions
  557. that we share.
  558. The history that we have
    experienced together.
  559. But more than that, you
    spoke too not just of the
  560. relationships of the past, but
    the relationships of the future.
  561. And I think that was what made
    what you said so inspirational.
  562. It was a distinguished American
    governor of New York who
  563. remarked on the propensity of
    politicians to campaign in
  564. poetry, but to govern in prose.
  565. The world you described to us
    today was not just one that is
  566. prosaic; it was one where the
    challenges are difficult and
  567. sometimes dangerous.
  568. One that is fast
    moving, that is complex,
  569. sometimes contradictory.
  570. And that offers at least as
    many threats as opportunities.
  571. But in the eloquence
    of your address,
  572. you reminded us of the
    importance of maintaining the
  573. poetry in government.
  574. Because to lead, that
    poetry is necessary.
  575. Necessary not only to
    articulate the challenges,
  576. as you did so masterfully.
  577. But also to bring others
    together to face those
  578. challenges with common
    principles and with
  579. shared purpose.
  580. Mr. President, it has been a
    privilege for all of us to hear
  581. you speak today.
  582. It is a privilege for me to have
    the responsibility of thanking
  583. you on behalf of both
    Houses of Parliament,
  584. for coming to Westminster, and
    to wish you and Mrs. Obama a
  585. very happy and pleasant
    rest of your stay in the
  586. United Kingdom.
  587. Thank you so much.
  588. (applause)