US and Czech Secretaries of State commemorate the end of WWII in Pilsen

14. August 2020 08:11, aktualizováno 09:24, Mgr. Milada Soukupová

Vice President of the Pilsen Region Marcela Krejsová acting as the President of the Region, and the representatives of the Pilsen Region and the city of Pilsen symbolically commemorated the liberation of the city by the US Army together with the US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and his Czech counterpart Tomáš Petříček.

Mike Pompeo and Tomáš Petříček laid wreaths and gave a speech at the memorial ‘Thank you, America!’. Prior to that, they had visited the General Patton Museum in Pilsen. Mike Pompeo's visit is a great honor for Pilsen, as he has been one of the most important foreign guest of the regional capital after 1990. The visit of the ministers was watched by hundreds of people.

"I thank the citizens of Pilsen and the Czech people for building this amazing monument. One of the inscriptions says we will never forget. And we won’t. We keep history alive thanks to this celebration. 75 years ago, our fighters under General Patton cut off Nazi shackles from western Czechoslovakia. I used to be a young officer of a motorized rifle army guarding the Iron Curtain, so I could see up close what real tyranny means. I can imagine the immense joy of the moment when American tanks and jeeps rumbled through the city 75 years ago," said Mike Pompeo in his speech at the Thank you, America!

He reminded that 30 years ago, the American Ambassador Shirley Temple-Black and the then President Václav Havel laid the foundation stone of this monument. "It was the first time after decades of the communist rule and Soviet supremacy that Czechs and Americans could openly remember the US military role in your liberation," Mike Pompeo added, recalling the Soviet occupation of 1968 and the courageous Czechs and Slovaks who fought for freedom in 1989. "The principles they fought for, namely democracy, market economy, freedom, the rule of law, respect for human rights, a return to the West, are the same as American soldiers fought for in World War II and those that have united our countries so far," he added.

Photo: City of Pilsen_Milan Říský