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Notes for the Independence Day Speech 2011

English Pages, 30. 6. 2011

Mr. Ambassador, Dear Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen,

Let me congratulate you on the 235th Day of Independence of the United States of America. I have been attending this traditional gathering for many years and it gives me always a great pleasure to meet so many Czech and American friends, so many Czechs and Americans who contribute to the friendly relations between our two countries.

For Americans, the Fourth of July is an occasion to celebrate their history, their patriotism and everything what makes their country exceptional, unique and freedom-loving. For us, it is an occasion to celebrate the values enshrined in the wording of the Declaration of Independence, because these are the values, Mr. Ambassador, we share with your country.

There will be another celebration tomorrow. The Czech Republic joins the Ronald Reagan centennial celebrations to commemorate the 100th birthday of this great President of your country. Tomorrow, the street in front of this residence will be named after him. I am convinced Ronald Reagan deserves to have a street in Prague. We know and we do not forget that he substantially contributed to the collapse of communism. We also know that this victory should not be interpreted as a final and comfortable one. It was Ronald Reagan who said that “freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction”, and we are, Mr. Ambassador, well aware of it.

The Czech Republic attaches great importance to its friendly and cooperative relations with the United States and to the whole concept of transatlantic relationship. The governments change in both countries, we may sometimes concentrate on different tasks and have different priorities, but our partnership is firm and consistent and it can’t be and will not be weakened by any particular difference in our views.

Mr. Ambassador, this is your first Independence Day reception in Prague. We also hope our new Ambassador to the United States, Mr. Petr Gandalovič, will soon present his credentials in Washington D.C. I would like to wish both of you success in your missions.

Mr. Ambassador, thank you for your invitation to be here with all of you today.

Václav Klaus, the Residence of the U.S. Ambassador in Prague, 30 June 2011


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