It doesn't happen often that a speech can transform the way a nation sees itself and also the way the world sees that nation. Such a speech was delivered by Richard von Weizsäcker, President of the Federal Republic of Germany, on May 8, 1985. Today we learned that von Weizsäcker died in Berlin at the age of 94.
Und dennoch wurde von Tag zu Tag klarer, was es heute für uns alle gemeinsam zu sagen gilt: Der 8. Mai war ein Tag der Befreiung. Er hat uns alle befreit von dem menschenverachtenden System der nationalsozialistischen Gewaltherrschaft.
(Yet with every day something became clearer, and this must be stated on behalf of all of us today: The 8th of May was a day of liberation. It liberated all of us from the inhumanity and tyranny of the National Socialist regime.)