“Tear Down This Wall”: Ronald Reagan - “Tear Down...

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“Tear Down This Wall”: Ronald Reagan Introduction On June 12, 1987, President Reagan spoke in West Berlin, near the Berlin Wall, not far from where the Brandenburg Gate stood in the eastern sector. His speech acknowledged the new Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev’s efforts at reform in the Soviet Union. However, Reagan was not satisfied with Gorbachev’s limited measures. He challenged the Soviet leader to show a real commitment to reform by tearing down the Berlin Wall that had stood between East and West Berlin since 1961. This wall symbolized the division between communism and democracy. Primary Source: Reagan’s speech in West Berlin “In the 1950s, Khrushchev predicted : “We will bury you.” But in the West today, we see a free world that has achieved a level of prosperity and well-being unprecedented [never having happened or existed before] in all human history. In the Communist world, we see failure, technological backwardness, declining standards of health, even want of the most basic kind—too little food. Even today, the Soviet Union still cannot feed itself.
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