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Reagan challenges Gorbachev

A+former+film+start%2C+President+Ronald+Reagan+is+credited+by+some+as+the+man+who+ended+the+Cold+War.
A former film start, President Ronald Reagan is credited by some as the man who ended the Cold War.

A former film start, President Ronald Reagan is credited by some as the man who ended the Cold War.

A former film start, President Ronald Reagan is credited by some as the man who ended the Cold War.


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Today in 1987, President Ronald Reagan challenges  Soviet Leader Mikhail Gorbachev to tear down the Berlin Wall in one of the most famous speeches of the Cold War.  Following Germany’s defeat in World War II, the country was divided into four separate sections.  The Americans, British, and French took control of the Western region, and the Soviets gained the East. In May of 1939, the three Western sections came together as one, forming the Federal Republic of Germany. Germany now stood in two sections, per 1952 as the border closed, the East and the West. By August of 1961, East Germany put up the Berlin wall in order to prevent its citizens from fleeing West.  With the wall as backdrop to his speech, President Reagan  challenged the Soviets for peace.

By famously stating, “Secretary General 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.” Reagan proposed a choice to Gorbachev and the entire Soviet Nation.  Although action wasn’t taken right away, in November of 1989 the Wall would come down. A year after that, in 1990 Germany was once again reunited and the Cold War came to abrupt close.

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Reagan challenges Gorbachev