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Remarks of the President and Prime Minister Heath of the United Kingdom Following Their Meetings in Bermuda

December 21, 1971

Mr. Prime Minister :

I want to express my appreciation for the very warm welcome you have given us here in Bermuda on this historic occasion, and to say first that the remarks that you have just made are ones that I can subscribe to completely.

As you have pointed out, we are entering a new era in the relations between our two countries, and a new era in the history of the world. That is exemplified by the fact that Britain will be going into Europe. It is also exemplified by the reference that you made to the fact that I will be visiting Peking and Moscow during the next year.

As we look at those changes in the world, as we look at what is really a new world, we also realize, however, that there are some things that have not changed. One thing that has not changed, and that will not change, is the friendship, the communication, the fact that our two countries, and the leaders of our two countries, have met here on, now, four occasions and, despite some tactical differences, find that on the great issues we see the problems of the world in exactly the same way.

I would put it very briefly in this way: As Britain goes into Europe, there will be a new Europe. The United States is, at the present time, embarked on creating what is really a new America, and we do live at a time when because of the fast changing events in the world, we live in a new world. It is essential that the new Europe and the new America, together with the other nations in the world, and particularly in Asia, Japan, the other great economic power in the world--it is essential that we work together.

It is inevitable that as free nations, believing in competition, we will compete, but it is also indispensable that that competition be constructive and not destructive, and I think that our talks have contributed toward that goal.

Thank you.

Note: The President spoke at approximately 4:20 p.m. at Government House, Hamilton, Bermuda, in response to Prime Minister Heath's remarks.

On the same day, the President and the Prime Minister participated in the ceremonial planting of Canary Island date palm trees on the grounds of Government House. The White House released an announcement containing additional information on the traditional tree planting ceremony reserved by custom to residents of Government House and their houseguests.
The Prime Minister's remarks follow:

Mr. President:

You and I have just come from the room in which your predecessors, President Eisenhower and President Kennedy, and the former Prime Ministers Winston Churchill and Harold Macmillan, sat and had talks in their day about the great problems of the world which confronted them. And in these talks you and I have been looking toward the future, a future in which we in Britain will become part of the European Community, and in which that larger, strengthened, more prosperous Europe will be a partner with you in the Atlantic Alliance.

We find ourselves now in a world which is changing faster than ever before with the development of the great powers and the emergence of China. So it has been a particularly fortunate time, when you are early next year going both to Peking and Moscow, for us to review this situation. What gives me particular pleasure is that, just as our predecessors sat there so informally and discussed these matters so frankly, so we have been able to do exactly the same for these 2 days.

I am one of those who believe that in the years to come, when we are part of a united Europe, we shall be carrying on talks of this kind, just as freely, just as frankly, whenever we feel the need, as we have done now.

And so I would like to thank you for coming here to Bermuda. A year ago you entertained me most hospitably in Washington, and I would like to wish you well in your talks with the other leaders in the Western World, and also with your visits in 1972.

I believe that the future of the Western World depends upon Europe and the United States and Japan being not in confrontation, but working together in harmony, because the interests which we have in common are of vital importance to us, and so much greater than any differences which may, from time to time, in various ways, divide us.

So these talks have confirmed once again the abiding nature of the Anglo-American relationship, the friendship which exists between Britain and the United States, and I would like to thank you again for the part which you and your colleagues are playing in this, and in the talks which we have just had.

Richard Nixon, Remarks of the President and Prime Minister Heath of the United Kingdom Following Their Meetings in Bermuda Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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