Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Sunday urged U.S. European allies to mobilize the same energy and values that won the Cold War to tackle contemporary problems, including terrorism and climate change. Clinton spoke at an event in the German capital on the eve of official observances of the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall.
Clinton's keynote speech at a dinner organized by the Atlantic Council was more an appeal for unity among the expanded NATO alliance than a commemoration of the transformative events in Berlin two decades ago.
With the North Atlantic Treaty Organization facing divisions over the war in Afghanistan and advanced economies struggling for a united approach on climate change, the Secretary of State urged alliance states to again summon the resolve and idealism that won the Cold War. "We owe it to ourselves and to those who yearn for the same freedoms that are enjoyed and even taken for granted in Berlin today. And we need to form an even stronger partnership to bring down the walls of the 21st century and to confront those who hide behind them - the suicide bombers, those who murder and maim girls whose only wish is to go to school, leaders who chose their own fortunes over the fortunes of their people," she said.
Clinton said the United States and its European partners should look at the example of the generations that brought them through the 20th century to combat violent extremism, nuclear proliferation and climate change. "European countries have been leaders in addressing the economic and social development challenges of the world. We need to continue our work on an economic recovery. And we need to continue to promote democracy and human rights beyond freedom's current frontiers, so that citizens everywhere are afforded the opportunity to pursue their dreams and live up to their own God-given potential," she said.
Clinton is in Berlin, heading a bipartisan U.S. delegation to mark the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. U.S. delegates include former U.S. National Security Advisers Zbigniew Brzezinski and Brent Scowcroft.
Clinton is having bilateral meetings on the margins of the Berlin Wall events and is expected to discuss Iran's nuclear program, among other issues, in a meeting on Monday with German Chancellor Angela Merkel.
The secretary of state discussed northern European issues on Sunday in a joint meeting with Estonian President Toomas Hendrik Ilves and his Latvian counterpart, Valdis Zatlers.