Public Papers

Message Honoring Those Civilians Killed in Moscow During the Attempted Coup


A great American, Patrick Henry, more than 200 years ago said: ``Give me liberty or give me death.'' In the years since then, many Americans have faced that choice and have made the supreme sacrifice in defense of freedom and democracy. The justice of the cause does not make the loss of brave men and women any easier to bear.

The American people during this past week shared the shock of the Russian people at the attack on their liberties, watched with admiration their defense of their White House and all it symbolized, and shared their joy at the collapse of the effort to reimpose tyranny. Today, we share your sorrow at the price these brave souls paid in the just cause for which they and you fought. They did not die in vain. May the memory of them remain bright and the democracy for which they gave their lives flourish among you.

Note: Robert S. Strauss, U.S. Ambassador to the Soviet Union, read this Presidential message at the August 24 funeral of three civilians killed in Moscow during the attempted coup.