Freitag, 30. September 2011

US-President Barack Obama `s Speeches 2002-2009 - Free, Searchable Database

US-President Barack Obama `s Speeches 2002-2009 - Free, Searchable Database

Auswärtiges Amt: Statement by Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle on the occasion of the Afrikaverein Libya Dinner


Mr. Meyer-Ewert,
Distinguished guests and representatives of the new Libya,
Mr Ambassador,
Representatives of German companies,
Members and friends of the Afrikaverein,
Ladies and gentlemen,

I am particularly delighted to be with you tonight and I am very grateful that the Afrikaverein has brought German and Libyan decision-makers from politics and business together. Our meeting is dedicated to a prosperous future for Libya and it sends a clear signal that we stand by the side of the new Libya.

The work of the Transitional National Council in the past six months deserves our respect and support. We have recognized the National Transitional Council as the governing authority of Libya, representing the people of Libya. We have noted that from the outset the National Transitional Council has been guided by a democratic vision for Libya. We are committed to supporting you wherever YOU feel that such support may be helpful. We intend to assist and not to interfere. We believe that Libyan ownership of the country’s political and economic reconstruction is crucial.

I understand that many amongst us tonight work in the medical field. We are here to support your efforts to bring an end to the suffering of so many people. Upon the initiative of the Federal Foreign Office we have established a working group on medical assistance to Libya. Together with various ministries and business associations especially from the German health sector we are preparing measures to the benefit of Libyans injured during the conflict.

We are ready to promote better living conditions, stability, democracy and a prosperous future for Libya.
There is a risk that fundamentalism might spread instead of democracy. It is in our shared interest to prevent that from happening. But democratization will only succeed if people can see and feel the benefits for themselves: more freedom and more opportunities for personal prosperity and well-being. So politics and business will have to work hand in hand to make the new Libya a better place.

German politics and German business are united in our desire to place our know-how at your disposal. German companies have an excellent reputation in the world. We are reliable. That is the reputation Germans have – in politics and in business. We do not enter countries to make short-term investments and extract profits. German business philosophy and German political philosophy is to be involved in countries in the long run. We are interested in partnerships on equal terms. Germany is a partner of the new Libya.

The German Government stands united in its efforts. Together with my colleague, Minister Dirk Niebel, I travelled to Benghazi in June. We opened our representative office with the new Libyan leadership. A few weeks later, the Afrikaverein took a delegation of some 40 German business people to Libya, which was also supported by our Foreign Office and by our Ministry of Economics and Technology.

I have welcomed the objectives of the Ten-Point Action Plan put forward by my colleague and Minister of Economics, Dr Phillip Rösler. We will work hard to contribute to its implementation:

- We will accelerate the lifting of sanctions. The money frozen in Germany and elsewhere belongs to the Libyan people. 1 Billion Euro of frozen assets in Germany have been made available to the National Transitional Council with the agreement of the United Nations sanctions committee.

- We have spent almost 15 million euro on humanitarian assistance.

- We have provided the National Transitional Council with a credit of 100 million euro for humanitarian and civil needs.

- We have reopened our Embassy in Tripoli and are one of the few countries to already have an Ambassador in the capital.

- We are also taking care of Libyan students in Germany – they have to be able to finish their studies in order to be ready to contribute to reconstruction and development in their home country.

In about two weeks’ time, Minister Rösler plans to visit Libya to strengthen our bilateral economic and commercial ties and to make German technological, administrative and management know-how available to Libya.

We are committed to working for a bright future for Libya – both bilaterally and multilaterally. Last week the Deauville Partners met in New York. We agreed to support our partner countries in North Africa by securing financial stability and promoting structural economic change that supports the democratic transformation process.

I am confident that today’s meeting is another step towards a fruitful and prospering partnership between Germany and the new Libya. And I am particularly grateful to each and everyone who is already contributing today and who will be contributing to this partnership in the future.

Unfortunately, I have to leave you now. But my experts from the Federal Foreign Office will be at your disposal for the rest of the evening. 

Thank you for your attention.

Mittwoch, 28. September 2011

Remarks by US-President Obama on the American Jobs Act in Denver, Colorado | The White House

Abraham Lincoln High School
Denver, Colorado

2:20 P.M. MDT

THE US-PRESIDENT: Hello, Denver! (Applause.)

What a beautiful day. Thank you so much. How’s it going, Lancers? (Applause.)

I hear the Lancers have a pretty good ball team.

That’s the story I’ve heard. (Applause.)

Well, listen, there are a couple of people here I want to acknowledge who are just outstanding public servants. First of all, a hometown hero who is now one of the best Secretaries of the Interior that we’ve ever had, Ken Salazar. (Applause.)

One of the best governors in the country, John Hickenlooper. (Applause.)

Two outstanding senators, Mark Udall -- (applause) -- and Michael Bennet. (Applause.)

Congresswoman Diana DeGette. (Applause.)

Congressman Ed Perlmutter. (Applause.)

Your own hometown mayor, Michael Hancock. (Applause.)

And former friend and -- or current friend, former mayor -- (laughter) -- and one of the finest public servants in Colorado history, Federico Peña. (Applause.)

So it is good to be back in Colorado, especially on a gorgeous day like this. (Applause.)

It’s always like this in late September, isn’t it? (Applause.)


It’s an honor to be here at Lincoln High School. (Applause.)

And I want to give a special thank you to Amelia for that wonderful introduction. (Applause.)

I was just talking to Amelia. She’s a senior this year. And she’s planning to go to college and planning to be a doctor, and I am absolutely certain she is going to succeed in everything that she does. And she’s an example, a great example, of how smarter courses and better technology can help guarantee our kids the foundation that they need to graduate and compete in this new global economy.

So we couldn’t be prouder of Amelia and we couldn’t be prouder of all the students here at Lincoln. (Applause.)

Now, I came here today to talk about the economy.

I came to talk about how we can get to a place where we’re creating good middle-class jobs again -- (applause) -- jobs that pay well and jobs that offer security.

We’ve got a lot to do to make sure that everyone in this country gets a fair shake and a fair shot and a chance to get ahead. And that’s the number-one thing that I think about each and every day. Your lives, your opportunities -- that should be the number-one thing that every public servant in Washington is thinking about.
There’s so much that we could accomplish together if Washington can finally start acting on behalf of the people. (Applause.)

We’ve got to get that city to stop worrying so much about their jobs and their careers and start worrying about your jobs and your careers. (Applause.)

And that’s why I sent Congress the American Jobs Act. Now, I know it’s kind of thick, but it boils down to two things: putting people back to work and putting more money in the pockets of working Americans. Every single thing in the American Jobs Act is the kind of proposal that’s been supported by Democrats and Republicans in the past. Everything in it will be paid for.

It’s been two weeks since I sent it to Congress; now I want it back. (Applause.)

I want it back, passed, so I can sign this bill and start putting people back to work. (Applause.)

I’ve already got the pens all ready, all lined up on my desk, ready to sign the bill. And every one of you can help make it happen by sending a message to Congress, a simple message: Pass this jobs bill. (Applause.)

Look, pass this jobs bill, and right here in Colorado, thousands of construction workers will have a job again. (Applause.)

This is one of the most common-sense ideas out there. All over the country there are roads and bridges and schools just like Lincoln that are in need of repair. (Applause.)

One of the reasons we came here was this is the fastest-growing school in one of the fastest-growing school districts in Colorado. (Applause.)

So Lincoln has been adding new AP courses and new language courses, and the wonderful principal and administrators here have been making sure -- and the teachers here have been making sure that kids have upgraded computers and learning software that’s necessary to prepare all of you students for the jobs and the economy of the future.

But you know what?

Things like science labs take money to upgrade. The science labs here at Lincoln High were built decades ago, back in the ‘60s. I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but science and technology has changed a little bit since the 1960s.

The world has changed a little bit since the 1960s. So we need to do everything we can to prepare our kids to compete. We need to do everything we can to make sure our students can compete with any students, anywhere in the world. And every child deserves a great school -- and we can give it to them. (Applause.)

We can rebuild our schools for the 21st century, with faster Internet, and smarter labs, and cutting-edge technology. And that won’t just create a better learning environment for students -- it will create good jobs for local construction workers right here in Denver, and all across Colorado, and all across the country. There are schools all throughout Colorado in need of renovation.

But it’s not just in this state. Last week, I visited a bridge in Cincinnati that connected Ohio to Kentucky. Bridges need renovations. Roads need renovations. We need to lay broadband lines in rural areas. There are construction projects like these all across this country just waiting to get started, and there are millions of unemployed construction workers ready to do the job.

So my question to Congress is: What on Earth are you waiting for? Let’s get to work. (Applause.) Let’s get to work. Let’s get to work.

Why should our children be allowed to study in crumbling, outdated schools? How does that give them a sense that education is important? We should build them the best schools. That’s what I want for my kids; that’s what you want for your kids. That’s what I want for every kid in America. (Applause.)

Why should we let China build the newest airports, the fastest railroads? We should build them right here in America, right here in Denver, right here in Colorado. (Applause.) There is work to be done. There are workers ready to do it. So tell Congress: Pass this jobs bill right away. (Applause.)

Let’s pass this jobs bill and put teachers back in the classroom where they belong. (Applause.) Places like South Korea, they’re adding teachers in droves to prepare their kids for the global economy. We’re laying off our teachers left and right. All across the country, budget cuts are forcing superintendents to make choices they don’t want to make.

I can tell you the last thing a governor like John Hickenlooper wants to do is to lose teachers. It’s unfair to our kids. It undermines our future. It has to stop. You tell Congress: Pass the American Jobs Act, and there will be funding to save jobs of thousands of Colorado teachers and cops and firefighters. It’s the right thing to do. Pass the bill. (Applause.)

If Congress passes this jobs bill, companies will get new tax credits for hiring America’s veterans. Think about it -- these men and women, they leave their careers, they leave their families. They are protecting us and our freedom. And the last thing they should have to do is fight for a job when they come home. (Applause.)

That’s why Congress needs to pass this bill -- to make it easier for businesses to hire our veterans and use the skills that they’ve developed protecting us. (Applause.)

Pass this bill, and it will help hundreds of thousands of young people find summer jobs next year to help them build skills. (Applause.)

It provides a $4,000 tax credit for companies that hire anybody who’s spent more than six months looking for a job. It extends unemployment insurance, but it also says if you’re collecting benefits, you’ll get connected to temporary work as a way to build your skills while you’re looking for a permanent job. Congress needs to pass this bill. (Applause.)

Congress needs to pass this bill so we can help the people who create most of the new jobs in this country -- America’s small business owners. It’s all terrific that corporate profits have come roaring back, but small companies haven’t come roaring back. Let’s give them a boost. Pass this bill, and every small business owner in America gets a tax cut. (Applause.) If they hire new employees, or they raise their employees’ salaries, they get another tax cut. (Applause.)

There are some Republicans in Congress who like to talk about being the friends of America’s job creators. Well, you know what, if you actually care about America’s job creators, then you should actually help America’s job creators with a tax cut by passing this bill. (Applause.)

Right away.

Now finally, if we get Congress to pass this bill, the typical working family in Colorado will get more than $1,700 in tax cuts next year; $1,700 that would have been taken out of your paycheck now goes right back in your pocket. (Applause.)

If Congress doesn’t act -- if Congress fails to pass this bill -- middle-class families will get hit with a tax increase at the worst possible time. We can’t let that happen. Republicans say they’re the party of tax cuts. Well, let them prove it. Tell them to fight just as hard for tax cuts for working Americans as they fight for the wealthiest Americans. (Applause.)

Tell them to pass this jobs bill right now. (Applause.)

So let me summarize here. The American Jobs Act will lead to new jobs for construction workers, jobs for teachers, jobs for veterans, jobs for young people, jobs for the unemployed. It will provide tax relief for every worker and small business in America. And by the way, it will not add to the deficit. It will be paid for. (Applause.)

Last week, I laid out a plan that would not only pay for the jobs bill but would begin to actually reduce our debt over time. It’s a plan that says if we want to create jobs and close the deficit, then we’ve got to not only make some of the cuts that we’ve made -- tough cuts that, with the help of Mark and Michael, we were able to get done -- but we’ve also got to ask the wealthiest Americans and biggest corporations to pay their fair share. (Applause.)

Look, we need to reform our tax code based on a simple principle: Middle-class families shouldn’t pay higher tax rates than millionaires and billionaires. (Applause.) Warren Buffett’s secretary shouldn’t pay a higher tax rate than Warren Buffett. A teacher or a nurse or a construction worker making $50,000 a year shouldn’t pay higher tax rates than somebody making $50 million. That’s just common sense. (Applause.)

And keep in mind I’m not saying this because we should be punishing success. This is the Land of Opportunity. What’s great about this country is that any of these young people here, if they’ve got a good idea, if they go out there and they’re willing to work hard, they can start a business, they can create value, great products, great services. They can make millions, make billions. That’s great. That’s what America is all about. Anybody can make it if they try.

But what’s also a quintessentially American idea is that those of us who’ve done well should pay our fair share to contribute to the upkeep of the nation that made our success possible -- (applause) -- because nobody -- nobody did well on their own. A teacher somewhere helped to give you the skills to succeed. (Applause.)

Firefighters and police officers are protecting your property. You’re moving your goods and products and services on roads that somebody built. That’s how we all do well together. We got here because somebody else invested in us, and we’ve got to make sure this generation of students can go to college on student aid or scholarships like I did. We’ve got to make sure that we keep investing in the kind of government research that helped to create the Internet, which countless private sector companies then used to create tens of millions of jobs.

And you know what? I’m positive -- I’ve talked to them, most wealthy Americans agree with this. Of course, the Republicans in Congress, they call this class warfare. You know what? If asking a millionaire to pay the same tax rate as a plumber makes me a class warrior, a warrior for the working class, I will accept that. I will wear that charge as a badge of honor. (Applause.)

The only warfare I’ve seen is the battle that’s been waged against middle-class families in this country for a decade now.

Ultimately, Colorado, this comes down to choices and it comes down to priorities. If we want to pay for this jobs plan, put people back to work, close this deficit, invest in our future, then the money has got to come from somewhere. And so my question is: Would you rather keep tax loopholes for oil companies? Or do you want construction workers to have a job rebuilding our schools and our roads and our bridges? (Applause.)

Would you rather keep tax breaks for billionaires that they don’t need? Or would you rather put teachers back to work, and help small businesses, and cut taxes, and reduce our deficit? (Applause.)

It’s time to build an economy that creates good middle-class jobs in this country. It’s time to build an economy that honors the values of hard work and responsibility. It’s time to build an economy that lasts.

And, Denver, that starts now. And I need your help to make it happen. (Applause.) I just want you to -- just remember, Republicans and Democrats in the past have supported every kind of proposal that’s in here. There’s no reason not to pass it just because I proposed it. We need to tell them it’s time to support these proposals right now.

There are some Republicans in Washington who have said that some of this might have to wait until the next election.


THE PRESIDENT: Maybe we should just stretch this out rather than work together right now. Some even said that if they agree with the proposals in the American Jobs Act, they still shouldn’t pass it because it might give me a win. Think about that. Give me a win? Give me a break! That’s why folks in Washington -- that’s why folks are fed up with Washington. (Applause.)

There are some folks in Washington who don’t get it. This isn’t about giving me a win. This is about giving Democrats and Republicans a chance to do something for the American people. It’s about giving people who are hurting a win. That’s what this is about. (Applause.)

It’s about giving small business owners a win, and entrepreneurs a win, and students a win, and working families a win. (Applause.) Giving all of us a win. (Applause.)

The next election is nearly 14 months away. The American people don’t have the luxury of waiting that long. There are folks here in Colorado who are living paycheck to paycheck, week to week. They need action and they need it now.

So I’m asking all of you, I need you to lift up your voices. Not just here in Denver, but anyone watching, anybody listening, anybody following online -- I need you to call, email, tweet, fax, visit -- tell your congressperson, unless the congressperson is here, because they’re already on board -- tell them you are tired of gridlock, you are tired of the games. Tell them the time for action is now. Tell them you want to create jobs now. Tell them to pass the bill. (Applause.)

If you want construction workers on the job, pass the bill. (Applause.) If you want teachers back in the classroom, pass the bill. (Applause.) If you want a tax cut for small business owners, pass the bill. (Applause.) If you want to help our veterans share in the opportunity that they defended, pass the bill. (Applause.)

It is time to act. We are not a people who sit back and wait for things to happen. We make things happen. We’re Americans. We are tougher than the times that we live in, and we are bigger than the politics we’ve been seeing out of Washington. We write our own destiny. It is in our power to do so once more. So let’s meet this moment and let’s get to work, and let’s show the world once again why the United States of America is the greatest nation on Earth.

Thank you. God bless you. God bless the United States of America. Go Lancers! (Applause.)


2:40 P.M. MDT

Montag, 26. September 2011

Rede von Außenminister Dr. Guido Westerwelle vor den Vereinten Nationen, 26. 9. 2011


-- Es gilt das gesprochene Wort! --

Herr Präsident,


meine Damen und Herren,

wie selten zuvor prägt in diesem Jahr die Sehnsucht der Menschen nach Freiheit, Würde und Selbstbestimmung unsere Welt.

Bislang erlebten wir Globalisierung vor allem als immer engere Vernetzung der Weltwirtschaft. Heute erleben wir, dass Globalisierung sehr viel mehr bedeutet. Dass sie auch eine Globalisierung der Werte bewirkt. Es sind die Werte der Charta der Vereinten Nationen, die unveräußerlichen Rechte aus der Allgemeinen Erklärung der Menschenrechte.

In Nordafrika und der arabischen Welt haben Millionen Menschen jahrzehntelange Unterdrückung abgeschüttelt. Sie wollen Freiheit, Demokratie, Menschenrechte, aber auch bessere Lebenschancen für sich und für ihre Familien.

Der Weg dorthin ist alles andere als einfach. Ein neues politisches System muss reifen, um stabil zu werden. Das braucht Zeit und Geduld. Aber auch der längste Weg beginnt mit dem ersten Schritt. Dieses Jahr ist ein Jahr der großen Schritte. Die ergreifenden Bilder von selbst errungener Würde und Selbstachtung, die stolzen Gesichter der Menschen auf dem Boulevard Bourguiba in Tunis und auf dem Tahrirplatz in Kairo sind unvergessen. Diese Menschen wollen ihr Schicksal selbst gestalten.

Und diese Sehnsucht ist keinesfalls beschränkt auf die arabische Welt. Auch in Weißrussland sehnen sich die Menschen nach einem Ende von Repression und Unfreiheit, nach Chancen für die volle Entfaltung ihrer individuellen Persönlichkeiten.

Deutschland hat mit dem Fall der Mauer und der Wiedervereinigung vor gut zwanzig Jahren das Glück einer friedlichen Revolution hautnah selbst erfahren. Heute haben wir ein elementares Interesse am Gelingen des Aufbruchs südlich des Mittelmeers.

Wir Deutschen bieten unsere Unterstützung an:

- für den Aufbruch in Ägypten und Tunesien,

- für die Reformen in Marokko und Jordanien,

- für den Neuanfang in Libyen nach dem Sturz des Diktators.

Jedes Land, jede Gesellschaft wird einen eigenen Weg in die Moderne finden, durch Revolution oder durch Reform. Wir wollen mit Rat und Tat Hilfe leisten. Hilfe beim Aufbau einer unabhängigen Justiz, vielfältiger Medien, einer lebendigen Zivilgesellschaft, bei Verfassungsprozess und Vergangenheitsbewältigung. Hilfe vor allem aber beim entscheidenden Aufbau einer neuen sozialen und wirtschaftlichen Ordnung.

Denn wir wissen doch alle, dass der Erfolg des gesellschaftlichen Aufbruchs entscheidend am wirtschaftlichen Erfolg hängt. Die Menschen, die für Freiheit und Selbstbestimmung auf die Straße gegangen sind, müssen ganz persönlich erfahren, dass sie mit ihren Ideen, ihrer Kreativität und ihrem Einsatz auch Erfolg haben können.

Deutschland setzt sich deshalb nicht nur für enge Partnerschaft, sondern auch für Marktöffnung ein. Wir wollen den Wandel durch mehr Handel befördern. Wir bieten Investitionen an, gerade in die mittelständische Wirtschaft, den tragenden Pfeiler einer offenen, erfolgreichen Gesellschaft.

Am Allerwichtigsten aber wird sein, der jungen Generation Bildung und Ausbildung für die Realisierung ihrer Lebenschancen zu bieten.

Den mutigen Frauen und Männern in Syrien schulden wir ein klares Signal der Solidarität. Die syrische Regierung beantwortet die legitimen Forderungen des syrischen Volkes mit brutaler Gewalt.

Deutschland wird sich weiter mit Nachdruck für eine Resolution des Sicherheitsrates einsetzen. Das ist nicht allein Frage der Solidarität mit den Menschen. Es ist auch eine Frage der Glaubwürdigkeit der Staatengemeinschaft. Wenn die Repression andauert, werden wir Europäer die Sanktionen gegen das Regime weiter verschärfen. Das syrische Volk soll frei seine Zukunft wählen können.

Diese Woche steht im Zeichen des ungelösten Konflikts im Nahen Osten. Präsident Abbas hat hier in New York den Erwartungen der Palästinenser wie auch der verständlichen Frustration der Menschen über die ausbleibenden Fortschritte Ausdruck verliehen.

Ministerpräsident Netanyahu hat Israels berechtigtes Verlangen nach einer friedlichen Existenz in sicheren Grenzen bekräftigt.

Beide Seiten haben legitime Interessen. Aber diese Interessen sind eben nicht unvereinbar.

Deutschland setzt sich ein für eine Zwei-Staaten-Lösung. Wir unterstützen einen palästinensischen Staat und ein Leben der Palästinenser in Würde und Selbstbestimmung. Einen Staat, der unabhängig, souverän, zusammenhängend, demokratisch, und politisch wie wirtschaftlich lebensfähig ist.

Für den ganz praktischen Aufbau dieser Staatlichkeit haben wir uns in den vergangenen Jahren besonders engagiert, in Verwaltung, Infrastruktur und Ausbildung, und politisch im Deutsch-Palästinensischen Lenkungsausschuss. Und wir wollen diesen Staat nicht irgendwann in einer fernen, unbestimmten Zukunft.
Aber ich will auch keinen Zweifel daran lassen: die Sicherheit Israels ist für die Bundesrepublik Deutschland Staatsraison.

Frieden zwischen Israelis und Palästinensern ist möglich. Ein palästinensischer Staat ist möglich. Zwei Staaten, friedlich Seite an Seite, das ist möglich. Aber der Weg dorthin führt über Verhandlungen.

Die Erklärung des Nahost-Quartetts vom Freitag setzt die Meilensteine auf diesem Weg. Deutschland hat sich intensiv für diese Quartett-Erklärung eingesetzt und unterstützt sie nachdrücklich. Aus der Konfrontation der Worte hier in New York darf keine Eskalation der Gewalt im Nahen Osten werden.

Ich appelliere deshalb an beide Seiten, an Palästinenser und Israelis, umgehend in direkte Verhandlungen einzutreten!

Beide Seiten haben am Freitag ihren Willen zu einem verhandelten Frieden bekräftigt. Nun kommt es darauf an, die Energie und den Druck dieser Tage in einen konstruktiven Prozess zu verwandeln.

Beide Seiten sind aufgefordert, innerhalb von drei Monaten "umfassende Vorschläge" zu Grenzen und Sicherheit vorzulegen und alle provokativen Schritte zu unterlassen.

Die internationale Gemeinschaft wird den schwierigen Weg zum Frieden weiter begleiten. Dazu gehört auch die Moskauer Konferenz als Teil des Verhandlungsfahrplans der kommenden Monate.

Meine Anerkennung gilt allen Beteiligten, die in den vergangenen Tagen um diese Chance für einen konstruktiven Weg gerungen haben. Als Europäer danke ich insbesondere der Hohen Vertreterin der Europäischen Union, Lady Ashton. Nutzen wir den Impuls des intensiven Ringens hier in New York, im Interesse der Menschen in Israel und den Palästinensischen Gebieten.

Mit größtem Einsatz arbeitet die Staatengemeinschaft seit Jahren darauf hin, dass von Afghanistan keine Bedrohung mehr ausgeht für den Weltfrieden und die internationale Sicherheit. Viele, zu viele Menschen haben dafür schon ihr Leben lassen müssen.

Am 5. Dezember 2011 werden wir in Bonn unter afghanischem Vorsitz über den weiteren Weg beraten.

Dabei wird es um drei große Fragen gehen:

Erstens: die vollständige Übergabe der Sicherheitsverantwortung. In diesem Sommer haben die Afghanen begonnen, die Sicherheit ihres Landes Schritt für Schritt bis 2014 selbst in die Hand zu nehmen. Es ist eine Übergabe der Verantwortung in Verantwortung.

Zweitens, die internationale Staatengemeinschaft wird sich in Afghanistan auch nach 2014 engagieren. Um seine staatliche Souveränität zu stärken, braucht Afghanistan auch künftig wirtschaftliche Impulse und mehr regionale Zusammenarbeit. Diesem Ziel dient die Initiative einer "Neuen Seidenstraße", die wir hier in New York auf den Weg gebracht haben.

Drittens: die innere Aussöhnung Afghanistans und seine Unterstützung durch die Staaten der Region ist der Schlüssel für einen dauerhaften Frieden. Die brutale Ermordung des früheren Präsidenten Rabbani zeigt, dass dieser Aussöhnungsprozess auch in Zukunft von Rückschlägen begleitet sein wird. Dennoch muss und wird er weitergehen. Deutschland wird hierzu auf dem Weg nach Bonn seinen Beitrag leisten.

Während in immer mehr Ländern der Welt Menschen die Chance ergreifen, in Freiheit und Selbstbestimmung eine bessere Zukunft für sich zu bauen, kämpfen am Horn von Afrika Millionen Menschen um das schiere Überleben. Die Vereinten Nationen haben sich um die rasche humanitäre Hilfe sehr verdient gemacht.

Deutschland tut hier und in vielen anderen Krisen, was in seinen Kräften steht, um die Not zu lindern.

Der Zerfall staatlicher Autorität und die Auswirkungen des Klimawandels verschärfen die ohnehin verheerende Situation.

Deutschland wird auch künftig an der Spitze des Kampfes gegen den Klimawandel stehen. Wie die Abrüstung und nukleare Nichtverbreitung, wie der Schutz der Menschenrechte gehört der Kampf für den Klimaschutz zu einer präventiven Diplomatie. Er ist Teil einer vorausschauenden Friedenspolitik.

Ende dieses Jahres werden mehr als sieben Milliarden Menschen unseren Globus bevölkern. In dieser Welt setzt Deutschland auf starke Vereinte Nationen:

- als Forum politischer Konsensbildung,

- als Quelle umfassend legitimierter Regelsetzung,

- als Akteur in den Krisengebieten dieser Welt.

Die VN-Charta und die Allgemeine Erklärung der Menschenrechte bieten mehr Menschen als je zuvor Orientierung und Inspiration für eine kooperative Weltordnung und eine gerechtere Weltgesellschaft.

Aber die Vereinten Nationen müssen sich dieser Welt im Umbruch anpassen. Nur dann werden die hier getroffenen Entscheidungen politische Kraft, Durchsetzungsfähigkeit und Akzeptanz entfalten können.

Neue Kraftzentren entstehen in der Weltpolitik. Aus ihrer wirtschaftlichen Dynamik erwächst der Anspruch politischer Teilhabe. Die letzte Generalversammlung hatte sich der Reform der Vereinten Nationen angenommen. Entscheidende Fortschritte bleiben bislang aus.

Wir begrüßen, dass Sie, Herr Präsident, diese Reform erneut zu Ihrem Anliegen machen wollen. Wir werden Sie nach Kräften dabei unterstützen.

In diesem September vor 38 Jahren wurden zwei deutsche Staaten in die Vereinten Nationen aufgenommen. Mein Amtsvorgänger Walter Scheel sagte damals an dieser Stelle:

"Sie werden die Bundesrepublik Deutschland immer dort finden, wo es um die internationale Zusammenarbeit geht, um die Bewahrung des Friedens und um die Rechte des Menschen. Wenn wir etwas aus eigener bitterer Erfahrung gelernt haben, so ist es dies: Der Mensch ist das Maß aller Dinge."

Diesem Maßstab bleibt Deutschland weiter verpflichtet.

Ich danke Ihnen.

Sonntag, 25. September 2011

Rede Seine Heiligkeit Papst Benedikt XVI.: Flughafen, Heilige Messe am 25. September 2011 als PDF

Reden zum Papstbesuch 2011 in Deutschland als PDF

Hier finden Sie tagesaktuell alle Reden zum Papstbesuch 2011.

Reden vom 25.09.2011

Weitere Reden:

Erzbischof Dr. Robert Zollitsch: Begrüßungsansprache bei der Heiligen Messe

deutsch englisch italienisch

Reden vom 24.09.2011


Reden des Papstes:


SH Papst Benedikt XVI.: Gebetsvigil mit den Jugendlichen

deutsch englisch portugiesisch spanisch italienisch französisch


SH Papst Benedikt XVI.: Begegnung mit dem Rat des Zentralkomitees der deutschen Katholiken (ZDK)

deutsch englisch portugiesisch spanisch italienisch polnisch französisch


SH Papst Benedikt XVI.: Begegnung mit den Vertretern der orthodoxen und orientalischen Kirchen

deutschen glisch portugiesisch spanisch italienisch polnisch französisch


SH Papst Benedikt XVI.: Münsterplatz, Begrüßung der Bürgerschaft

deutsch englisch portugiesisch spanisch italienisch polnisch französisch


SH Papst Benedikt XVI.: Domplatz, Heilige Messe

deutsch englisch portugiesisch spanisch italienisch französisch


Weitere Reden:


Erzbischof Dr. Robert Zollitsch: Begrüßung von Papst Benedikt XVI. bei der Vigilfeier

deutsch englisch italienisch


Alois Glück: Rede bei der Begegnung mit dem Präsidium des Zentralkomitees der deutschen Katholiken

deutsch englisch italienisch


Erzbischof Dr. Robert Zollitsch: Begegnung mit dem Zentralkomitee der deutschen Katholiken (ZdK)

deutsch englisch italienisch


Erzbischof Dr. Robert Zollitsch: Begrüßung des Heiligen Vaters bei der Begegnung mit den Seminaristen

deutsch englisch italienisch


Metropolit Augoustinos von Deutschland: Begrüßung anlässlich der Begegnung mit Papst Benedikt XVI.

deutsch englisch italienisch


Erzbischof Dr. Robert Zollitsch: Begrüßung der Vertreter der orthodoxen und der orientalisch-orthodoxen Kirchen

deutsch englischi talienisch


Erzbischof Dr. Robert Zollitsch: Begrüßung des Heiligen Vaters in Freiburg auf dem Münsterplatz

deutsch englisch italienisch


Bischof Dr. Joachim Wanke: Begrüßung des Heiligen Vaters anlässlich der Heiligen Messe

deutsch englisch


Reden vom 23.09.2011


Reden des Papstes:


SH Papst Benedikt XVI.: Ökumenischer Gottesdienst

deutsch englisch portugiesisch spanisch italienisch polnisch französisch


SH Papst Benedikt XVI.: Begegnung mit Vertretern des Rates der evangelischen Kirche in Deutschland (EKD)

deutsch englisch portugiesisch spanisch italienisch polnisch französisch


SH Papst Benedikt XVI.: Begegnung mit Repräsentanten der Muslimischen Gemeinde

deutsch englisch portugiesisch spanisch italienisch polnisch französisch


Weitere Reden:


Bischof Dr. Joachim Wanke: Begrüßung des Heiligen Vaters in Etzelsbach

deutsch englisch


Landesbischöfin Ilse Junkermann: Ansprache im Kapitelsaal des Augustinerklosters zu Erfurt

deutsch englisch italienisch


Präses Katrin Göring-Eckardt: Begrüßung und Geistliches Wort im Rahmen der Ökumenischen Feier in der Augustinerkirche in Erfurt

deutsch englisch italienisch


Präses Nikolaus Schneider: Ansprache im Kapitelsaal des Augustinerklosters zu Erfurt

deutsch englisch italienisch


Prof. Dr. Mouhanad Khorchide: Ansprache anlässlich der Begegnung des Heiligen Vaters mit Vertretern des Islam

deutsch englisch italienisch


Erzbischof Dr. Robert Zollitsch: Begrüßung anlässlich der Begegnung des Heiligen Vaters mit Vertretern der Muslime in Deutschland

deutsch englisch italienisch


Reden vom 22.09.2011


Reden des Papstes:


SH Papst Benedikt XVI.: Olympiastadion Heilige Messe

deutsch englisch portugiesisch spanisch italienisch polnisch


SH Papst Benedikt XVI.: Begegnung mit Repräsentanten der jüdischen Gemeinde

deutsch englisch portugiesisch spanisch italienisch polnisch


SH Papst Benedikt XVI.: Besuch des Deutschen Bundestags

deutsch englisch portugiesisch spanisch italienisch polnisch


SH Papst Benedikt XVI.: Schloß Bellevue Begrüßungszeremonie

deutsch englisch portugiesisch spanisch italienisch polnisch


Weitere Reden:


Erzbischof Dr. Rainer Maria Woelki: Ansprache beim Empfang im Anschluss an den Gottesdienst mit Papst Benedikt XVI.

deutsch englisch


Erzbischof Dr. Rainer Maria Woelki: Grußwort zur Heiligen Messe im Olympiastadion Berlin

deutsch englisch


Erzbischof Dr. Robert Zollitsch: Begrüßung anlässlich der Begegnung des Heiligen Vaters mit der jüdischen Gemeinschaft

deutsch englisch


Dr. Dieter Graumann: Rede anlässlich der Begegnung mit Papst Benedikt XVI.

deutsch englisch


Dr. Norbert Lammert: Rede anlässlich der Begegnung mit Papst Benedikt XVI. im Deutschen Bundestag

deutsch englisch spanisch italienisch französisch


Bundespräsident Christian Wulff: Begrüßung Seiner Heiligkeit Papst Benedikt XVI. in Schloss Bellevue

deutsch italienisch

Samstag, 24. September 2011

Papstbesuch 2011: Alle Reden

Papstbesuch 2011: Alle Reden

World Leaders Address General Assembly | C-SPAN

World Leaders Address General Assembly | C-SPAN

Remarks by Israeli PM Netanyahu to the U.N. General Assembly

Photo by GPO

Enlarged Picture

Location: United Nations Headquarters, New York City, New York

MR. : The assembly will now hear a statement by His Excellency Benjamin Netanyahu, Prime Minister of the State of Israel.

I have great pleasure in welcoming His Excellency Benjamin Netanyahu, Prime Minister of the State of Israel.


MR. : I invite him to address the General Assembly.

PRIME MINISTER NETANYAHU: Thank you, Mr. President.

Ladies and gentlemen, Israel has extended its hand in peace from the moment it was established 63 years ago. On behalf of Israel and the Jewish people, I extend that hand again today. I extend it to the people of Egypt and Jordan, with renewed friendship for neighbors with whom we have made peace. I extend it to the people of Turkey, with respect and good will. I extend it to the people of Libya and Tunisia, with admiration for those trying to build a democratic future. I extend it to the other peoples of North Africa and the Arabian Peninsula, with whom we want to forge a new beginning. I extend it to the people of Syria, Lebanon and Iran, with awe at the courage of those fighting brutal repression.

But most especially, I extend my hand to the Palestinian people, with whom we seek a just and lasting peace.

Ladies and gentlemen, in Israel our hope for peace never wanes. Our scientists, doctors, and innovators apply their genius to improve the world of tomorrow. Our artists, our writers, enrich the heritage of humanity. Now, I know that this is not exactly the image of Israel that is often portrayed in this hall. After all, it was here in 1975that the age-old yearning of my people to restore our national life in our ancient biblical homeland -- it was then that this was branded shamefully, as racism. And it was here in 1980, right here, that the historic peace agreement between Israel and Egypt wasn't praised; it was denounced! And it's here, year after year that Israel is unjustly singled out for condemnation. It's singled out for condemnation more often than all the nations of the world combined. Twenty-one out of the 27 General Assembly resolutions condemn Israel -- the one true democracy in the Middle East.

Well, this is an unfortunate part of the UN institution. It's the theater of the absurd. It doesn't only cast Israel as the villain; it often casts real villains in leading roles: Gadhafi's Libya chaired the UN Commission on Human Rights; Saddam's Iraq headed the UN Committee on Disarmament. You might say: That's the past. Well, here's what's happening now -- right now, today, Hezbollah-controlled Lebanon now presides over the UN Security Council. This means, in effect, that a terror organization presides over the body entrusted with guaranteeing the world's security.

You couldn't make this thing up.

So here in the UN, automatic majorities can decide anything. They can decide that the sun sets rises in the west. But they can also decide -- they have decided -- that the Western Wall in Jerusalem, Judaism's holiest place, is occupied Palestinian territory.

And yet even here in the General Assembly, the truth can sometimes break through. In 1984 when I was appointed Israel's ambassador to the United Nations, I visited the great rabbi of Lubavich. He said to me -- and ladies and gentlemen, I don't want any of you to be offended because from personal experience of serving here, I know there are many honorable men and women, many capable and decent people, serving their nations here -- But here's what the rebbe said to me. He said to me, you'll be serving in a house of many lies. And then he said, remember that even in the darkest place, the light of a single candle can be seen far and wide.

Today I hope that the light of truth will shine, if only for a few minutes, in a hall that for too long has been a place of darkness for my country. So as Israel's prime minister, I didn't come here to win applause. I came here to speak the truth. The truth is -- the truth is that Israel wants peace. The truth is that I want peace. The truth is that in the Middle East at all times, but especially during these turbulent days, peace must be anchored in security. The truth is that we cannot achieve peace through UN resolutions, but only through direct negotiations between the parties. The truth is that so far the Palestinians have refused to negotiate. The truth is that Israel wants peace with a Palestinian state, but the Palestinians want a state without peace. And the truth is you shouldn't let that happen.

Ladies and gentlemen, when I first came here 27 years ago, the world was divided between East and West. Since then the Cold War ended, great civilizations have risen from centuries of slumber, hundreds of millions have been lifted out of poverty, countless more are poised to follow, and the remarkable thing is that so far this monumental historic shift has largely occurred peacefully. Yet a malignancy is now growing between East and West that threatens the peace of all. It seeks not to liberate, but to enslave, not to build, but to destroy.

That malignancy is militant Islam. It cloaks itself in the mantle of a great faith, yet it murders Jews, Christians and Muslims alike with unforgiving impartiality. On September 11thit killed thousands of Americans, and it left the twin towers in smoldering ruins. Last night I laid a wreath on the 9/11 memorial. It was deeply moving. But as I was going there, one thing echoed in my mind: the outrageous words of the president of Iran on this podium yesterday. He implied that 9/11 was an American conspiracy. Some of you left this hall. All of you should have.

Since 9/11, militant Islamists slaughtered countless other innocents -- in London and Madrid, in Baghdad and Mumbai, in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem, in every part of Israel. I believe that the greatest danger facing our world is that this fanaticism will arm itself with nuclear weapons. And this is precisely what Iran is trying to do.

Can you imagine that man who ranted here yesterday -- can you imagine him armed with nuclear weapons? The international community must stop Iran before it's too late. If Iran is not stopped, we will all face the specter of nuclear terrorism, and the Arab Spring could soon become an Iranian winter.

That would be a tragedy. Millions of Arabs have taken to the streets to replace tyranny with liberty, and no one would benefit more than Israel if those committed to freedom and peace would prevail.

This is my fervent hope. But as the prime minister of Israel, I cannot risk the future of the Jewish state on wishful thinking. Leaders must see reality as it is, not as it ought to be. We must do our best to shape the future, but we cannot wish away the dangers of the present.

And the world around Israelis definitely becoming more dangerous. Militant Islam has already taken over Lebanon and Gaza. It's determined to tear apart the peace treaties between Israel and Egypt and between Israel and Jordan. It's poisoned many Arab minds against Jews and Israel, against America and the West. It opposes not the policies of Israel but the existence of Israel.

Now, some argue that the spread of militant Islam, especially in these turbulent times -- if you want to slow it down, they argue, Israel must hurry to make concessions, to make territorial compromises. And this theory sounds simple. Basically it goes like this: Leave the territory, and peace will be advanced. The moderates will be strengthened, the radicals will be kept at bay. And don't worry about the pesky details of how Israel will actually defend itself; international troops will do the job.

These people say to me constantly: Just make a sweeping offer, and everything will work out. You know, there's only one problem with that theory. We've tried it and it hasn't worked. In 2000 Israel made a sweeping peace offer that met virtually all of the Palestinian demands. Arafat rejected it. The Palestinians then launched a terror attack that claimed a thousand Israeli lives.

Prime Minister Olmert afterwards made an even more sweeping offer, in 2008. President Abbas didn't even respond to it.

But Israel did more than just make sweeping offers. We actually left territory. We withdrew from Lebanon in2000 and from every square inch of Gaza in 2005. That didn't calm the Islamic storm, the militant Islamic storm that threatens us. It only brought the storm closer and made it stronger.

Hezbollah and Hamas fired thousands of rockets against our cities from the very territories we vacated. See, when Israel left Lebanon and Gaza, the moderates didn't defeat the radicals, the moderates were devoured by the radicals. And I regret to say that international troops like UNIFIL in Lebanon and EUBAM in Gaza didn't stop the radicals from attacking Israel.

We left Gaza hoping for peace.

We didn't freeze the settlements in Gaza, we uprooted them. We did exactly what the theory says: Get out, go back to the 1967 borders, dismantle the settlements.

And I don't think people remember how far we went to achieve this. We uprooted thousands of people from their homes. We pulled children out of their schools and their kindergartens. We bulldozed synagogues. We even -- we even moved loved ones from their graves. And then, having done all that, we gave the keys of Gaza to President Abbas.

Now the theory says it should all work out, and President Abbas and the Palestinian Authority now could build a peaceful state in Gaza. You can remember that the entire world applauded. They applauded our withdrawal as an act of great statesmanship. It was a bold act of peace.

But ladies and gentlemen, we didn't get peace. We got war. We got Iran, which through its proxy Hamas promptly kicked out the Palestinian Authority. The Palestinian Authority collapsed in a day -- in one day.

President Abbas just said on this podium that the Palestinians are armed only with their hopes and dreams. Yeah, hopes, dreams and 10,000 missiles and Grad rockets supplied by Iran, not to mention the river of lethal weapons now flowing into Gaza from the Sinai, from Libya, and from elsewhere.

Thousands of missiles have already rained down on our cities. So you might understand that, given all this, Israelis rightly ask: What's to prevent this from happening again in the West Bank? See, most of our major cities in the south of the country are within a few dozen kilometers from Gaza. But in the center of the country, opposite the West Bank, our cities are a few hundred meters or at most a few kilometers away from the edge of the West Bank.

So I want to ask you. Would any of you -- would any of you bring danger so close to your cities, to your families? Would you act so recklessly with the lives of your citizens? Israelis are prepared to have a Palestinian state in the West Bank, but we're not prepared to have another Gaza there. And that's why we need to have rea l security arrangements, which the Palestinians simply refuse to negotiate with us.

Israelis remember the bitter lessons of Gaza. Many of Israel's critics ignore them. They irresponsibly advise Israel to go down this same perilous path again. Your read what these people say and it's as if nothing happened -- just repeating the same advice, the same formulas as though none of this happened.

And these critics continue to press Israel to make far-reaching concessions without first assuring Israel's security. They praise those who unwittingly feed the insatiable crocodile of militant Islam as bold statesmen. They cast as enemies of peace those of us who insist that we must first erect a sturdy barrier to keep the crocodile out, or at the very least jam an iron bar between its gaping jaws.

So in the face of the labels and the libels, Israel must heed better advice. Better a bad press than a good eulogy, and better still would be a fair press whose sense of history extends beyond breakfast, and which recognizes Israel's legitimate security concerns.

I believe that in serious peace negotiations, these needs and concerns can be properly addressed, but they will not be addressed without negotiations. And the needs are many, because Israel is such a tiny country. Without Judea and Samaria, the West Bank, Israel is all of 9 miles wide.

I want to put it for you in perspective, because you're all in the city. That's about two-thirds the length of Manhattan. It's the distance between Battery Park and Columbia University. And don't forget that the people who live in Brooklyn and New Jersey are considerably nicer than some of Israel's neighbors.

So how do you -- how do you protect such a tiny country, surrounded by people sworn to its destruction and armed to the teeth by Iran? Obviously you can't defend it from within that narrow space alone. Israel needs greater strategic depth, and that's exactly why Security Council Resolution 242 didn't require Israel to leave all the territories it captured in the Six-Day War. It talked about withdrawal from territories, to secure and defensible boundaries. And to defend itself, Israel must therefore maintain a long-term Israeli military presence in critical strategic areas in the West Bank.

I explained this to President Abbas. He answered that if a Palestinian state was to be a sovereign country, it could never accept such arrangements. Why not? America has had troops in Japan, Germany and South Korea for more than a half a century. Britain has had an air base in Cyprus. France has forces in three independent African nations. None of these states claim that they're not sovereign countries.

And there are many other vital security issues that also must be addressed. Take the issue of air space. Again, Israel's small dimensions create huge security problems. America can be crossed by jet airplane in six hours. To fly across Israel, it takes three minutes. So is Israel's tiny airspace to be chopped in half and given to a Palestinian state not at peace with Israel?

Our major international airport is a few kilometers away from the West Bank. Without peace, will our planes become targets for antiaircraft missiles placed in the adjacent Palestinian state? And how will we stop the smuggling into the West Bank? It's not merely the West Bank, it's the West Bank mountains. It just dominates the coastal plain where most of Israel's population sits below. How could we prevent the smuggling into these mountains of those missiles that could be fired on our cities?

I bring up these problems because they're not theoretical problems. They're very real. And for Israelis, they're life-and- death matters. All these potential cracks in Israel's security have to be sealed in a peace agreement before a Palestinian state is declared, not afterwards, because if you leave it afterwards, they won't be sealed. And these problems will explode in our face and explode the peace.

The Palestinians should first make peace with Israel and then get their state. But I also want to tell you this. After such a peace agreement is signed, Israel will not be the last country to welcome a Palestinian state as a new member of the United Nations. We will be the first.

And there's one more thing. Hamas has been violating international law by holding our soldier Gilad Shalit captive for five years.

They haven't given even one Red Cross visit. He's held in a dungeon, in darkness, against all international norms. Gilad Shalit is the son of Aviva and Noam Shalit. He is the grandson of Zvi Shalit, who escaped the Holocaust by coming in the 1930’s as a boy to the land of Israel. Gilad Shalit is the son of every Israeli family. Every nation represented here should demand his immediate release. If you want to pass a resolution about the Middle East today, that's the resolution you should pass.

Ladies and gentlemen, last year in Israel in Bar-Ilan University, this year in the Knesset and in the U.S. Congress, I laid out my vision for peace in which a demilitarized Palestinian state recognizes the Jewish state. Yes, the Jewish state. After all, this is the body that recognized the Jewish state 64 years ago. Now, don't you think it's about time that Palestinians did the same?

The Jewish state of Israel will always protect the rights of all its minorities, including the more than 1million Arab citizens of Israel. I wish I could say the same thing about a future Palestinian state, for as Palestinian officials made clear the other day-- in fact, I think they made it right here in New York -- they said the Palestinian state won't allow any Jews in it. They'll be Jew-free -- Judenrein. That's ethnic cleansing. There are laws today in Ramallah that make the selling of land to Jews punishable by death. That's racism. And you know which laws this evokes.

Israel has no intention whatsoever to change the democratic character of our state. We just don't want the Palestinians to try to change the Jewish character of our state. We want to give up -- we want them to give up the fantasy of flooding Israel with millions of Palestinians.

President Abbas just stood here, and he said that the core of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is the settlements. Well, that's odd. Our conflict has been raging for -- was raging for nearly half a century before there was a single Israeli settlement in the West Bank. So if what President Abbas is saying was true, then the -- I guess that the settlements he's talking about are Tel Aviv, Haifa, Jaffa, Be'er Sheva. Maybe that's what he meant the other day when he said that Israel has been occupying Palestinian land for 63 years. He didn't say from 1967; he said from1948. I hope somebody will bother to ask him this question because it illustrates a simple truth: The core of the conflict is not the settlements. The settlements are a result of the conflict..

The settlements have to be --it's an issue that has to be addressed and resolved in the course of negotiations. But the core of the conflict has always been and unfortunately remains the refusal of the Palestinians to recognize a Jewish state in any border.

I think it's time that the Palestinian leadership recognizes what every serious international leader has recognized, from Lord Balfour and Lloyd George in 1917, to President Truman in1948, to President Obama just two days ago right here: Israel is the Jewish state.

President Abbas, stop walking around this issue. Recognize the Jewish state, and make peace with us. In such a genuine peace, Israel is prepared to make painful compromises. We believe that the Palestinians should be neither the citizens of Israel nor its subjects. They should live in a free state of their own. But they should be ready, like us, for compromise. And we will know that they're ready for compromise and for peace when they start taking Israel's security requirements seriously and when they stop denying our historical connection to our ancient homeland.

I often hear them accuse Israel of Judaizing Jerusalem. That's like accusing America of Americanizing Washington, or the British of Anglicizing London. You know why we're called "Jews"? Because we come from Judea.

In my office in Jerusalem, there's a -- there's an ancient seal. It's a signet ring of a Jewish official from the time of the Bible. The seal was found right next to the Western Wall, and it dates back 2,700 years, to the time of King Hezekiah. Now, there's a name of the Jewish official inscribed on the ring in Hebrew. His name was Netanyahu. That's my last name. My first name, Benjamin, dates back a thousand years earlier to Benjamin -- Binyamin -- the son of Jacob, who was also known as Israel. Jacob and his 12 sons roamed these same hills of Judea and Samaria 4,000 years ago, and there's been a continuous Jewish presence in the land ever since.

And for those Jews who were exiled from our land, they never stopped dreaming of coming back: Jews in Spain, on the eve of their expulsion; Jews in the Ukraine, fleeing the pogroms; Jews fighting the Warsaw Ghetto, as the Nazis were circling around it. They never stopped praying, they never stopped yearning. They whispered: Next year in Jerusalem. Next year in the promised land.

As the prime minister of Israel, I speak for a hundred generations of Jews who were dispersed throughout the lands, who suffered every evil under the Sun, but who never gave up hope of restoring their national life in the one and only Jewish state.

Ladies and gentlemen, I continue to hope that President Abbas will be my partner in peace. I've worked hard to advance that peace. The day I came into office, I called for direct negotiations without preconditions. President Abbas didn't respond. I outlined a vision of peace of two states for two peoples. He still didn't respond. I removed hundreds of roadblocks and checkpoints, to ease freedom of movement in the Palestinian areas; this facilitated a fantastic growth in the Palestinian economy. But again -- no response. I took the unprecedented step of freezing new buildings in the settlements for 10 months. No prime minister did that before, ever. Once again -- you applaud, but there was no response. No response.

In the last few weeks, American officials have put forward ideas to restart peace talks. There were things in those ideas about borders that I didn't like. There were things thereabout the Jewish state that I'm sure the Palestinians didn't like.

But with all my reservations, I was willing to move forward on these American ideas.

President Abbas, why don't you join me? We have to stop negotiating about the negotiations. Let's just get on with it. Let's negotiate peace.

I spent years defending Israel on the battlefield. I spent decades defending Israel in the court of public opinion. President Abbas, you've dedicated your life to advancing the Palestinian cause. Must this conflict continue for generations, or will we be able our children and our grandchildren to speak in years ahead of how we found a way to end it? That's what we should aim for, and that's what I believe we can achieve.

In two and a half years, we met in Jerusalem only once, even though my door has always been open to you. If you wish, I'll come to Ramallah. Actually, I have a better suggestion. We've both just flown thousands of miles to New York. Now we're in the same city. We're in the same building. So let's meet here today in the United Nations. Who's there to stop us? What is there to stop us? If we genuinely want peace, what is there to stop us from meeting today and beginning peace negotiations?

And I suggest we talk openly and honestly. Let's listen to one another. Let's do as we say in the Middle East: Let's talk "doogri". That means straightforward. I'll tell you my needs and concerns. You'll tell me yours. And with God's help, we'll find the common ground of peace.

There's an old Arab saying that you cannot applaud with one hand. Well, the same is true of peace. I can not make peace alone. I cannot make peace without you. President Abbas, I extend my hand -- the hand of Israel -- in peace. I hope that you will grasp that hand. We are both the sons of Abraham. My people call him Avraham. Your people call him Ibrahim. We share the same patriarch. We dwell in the same land. Our destinies are intertwined. Let us realize the vision of Isaiah --(Isaiah 9:1in Hebrew) -- "The people who walk in darkness will see a great light." Let that light be the light of peace.