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Remembering Kennedy's Famous Berlin Speech 50 Years Later

50 years ago today, president John F. Kennedy made an impassioned speech in front of Berlin's city hall, declaring famously, "Ich bin ein Berliner."


50 years ago today, American President John F. Kennedy made an impassioned speech in front of Berlin's City Hall, declaring famously, "Ich bin ein Berliner" (I am a Berliner). The speech was watched by 1.1 million—more than 50 percent of Berlin’s population—and from the other side of the border, by small groups of East Berliners unable to even wave because of the presence of the East German People's Police. When Kennedy declared, "All free men, wherever they may live, are citizens of Berlin, and therefore, as a free man, I take pride in the words, 'Ich bin ein Berliner'," he gave a morale boost to West Germans who were still coping with the fact that the Wall had recently been erected.

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