George W. Bush photo

Remarks at a Dinner Hosted by Queen Elizabeth II in London

November 19, 2003

Your Majesty, Your Royal Highness, and distinguished guests: Laura and I are deeply honored to accept Your Majesty's gracious hospitality and to be welcomed into your home. Through the last century and into our own, Americans have appreciated the friendship of your people. And we are grateful for your personal commitment across five decades to the health and vitality of the alliance between our nations.

Of course, things didn't start out too well. [Laughter] Yet, even at America's founding, our nations shared a basic belief in human liberty. That conviction more than anything else led to our reconciliation. And in time, our shared commitment to freedom became the basis of a great Atlantic alliance that defeated tyranny in Europe and saved the liberty of the world.

The story of liberty, the story of the Magna Carta and the Declaration of Independence, continues in our time. The power of freedom has touched Asia and Latin America and Africa and beyond. And now our two countries are carrying out a mission of freedom and democracy in Afghanistan and Iraq. Once again, America and Britain are joined in the defense of our common values. Once again, American and British servicemembers are sacrificing in a necessary and noble cause. Once again, we are acting to secure the peace of the world.

The bonds between our countries were formed in hard experience. We passed through great adversity together. We have risen through great challenges together. The mutual respect and fellowship between our countries is deep and strong and permanent.

Let us raise our glasses to our common ideals, to our enduring friendships, to the preservation of our liberties, and to Her Majesty, the Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.

NOTE: The President spoke at 8:49 p.m. in the Ballroom at Buckingham Palace. In his remarks, he referred to Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. The transcript released by the Office of the Press Secretary also included the remarks of Queen Elizabeth II. A tape was not available for verification of the content of these remarks.

George W. Bush, Remarks at a Dinner Hosted by Queen Elizabeth II in London Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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