Wall 2

Today marks the 28th anniversary of President Ronald Reagan’s “tear down this wall” speech at the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin, Germany. In this speech President Reagan challenges Soviet Union leader Mikhail Gorbachev to destroy the Berlin Wall.

The Berlin Wall, erected in 1961, divided the city into two parts: East and West. In the West, prosperity and liberty thrived. In the East, citizens suffered the oppression and brutality of Communism. Reagan’s speech reverberated throughout the divide. And in it he informed all of the benefits that come with freedom—comity, peace, security, and prosperity—and insisted that those who suffer the communist regime must be liberated.  

 “There is one sign the Soviets can make that would be unmistakable, that would advance dramatically the cause of freedom and peace,” the president said. “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!”

Two years later (November 9, 1989) the wall was torn down. Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform, attributes the fall of Communism to Reagan’s steadfast commitment to promoting ideas about freedom and democracy.

“Ronald Reagan changed the Republican Party, then he changed America, and then he changed the world,” said Norquist.