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This Happened

This Happened — June 26: JFK "I'm A Berliner" Speech

President John F. Kennedy delivered his famous "Ich bin ein Berliner" speech on this day in 1963.

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Where did President Kennedy deliver his speech?

President Kennedy gave his "Ich bin ein Berliner" speech in West Berlin, at the Rathaus Schöneberg (Schöneberg City Hall) in front of a crowd of thousands.

What was the purpose of President Kennedy's speech in Berlin?

The purpose of President Kennedy's speech was to express solidarity and support for the people of West Berlin, who were living in the shadow of the Berlin Wall and facing the threat of communism during the Cold War. The speech aimed to reinforce the United States' commitment to the defense of democratic values and the preservation of freedom.

Why did President Kennedy say "Ich bin in Berliner"?

In his speech, President Kennedy used the phrase "Ich bin ein Berliner," which translates to "I am a Berliner" in English, as a powerful symbol of unity and support. By stating his solidarity with the people of Berlin, he sought to emphasize that the United States stood with them in their struggle against the division imposed by the Berlin Wall.

How did the "Ich bin ein Berliner" speech affect the Cold War?

President Kennedy's speech played a role in strengthening the resolve of the Western powers and inspiring the people of West Berlin. It symbolized the United States' determination to support and defend democracy, even in the face of communist aggression. The speech became a lasting symbol of hope and resistance during the Cold War era.

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Iran's War On Abortion Rights, A Toxic Mix Of Theocracy And Demographic Panic

Ending a pregnancy has become a major complication, and a crime, for Iranian women who cannot or will not have children in a country wracked by socio-economic woes and a leadership.

photo of a young child surrounded by women in chadors

Iran's government wants to boost the birth rate at all costs

Office of Supreme Leader/ZUMA
Firoozeh Nordstrom

Keen to boost the population, Iran's Islamic regime has reversed its half-hearted family planning policies of earlier years and is curbing birth control with measures that include banning abortion.

Its (2021) Law to Support the Family and Rejuvenate the Population (Qanun-e hemayat az khanevadeh va javani-e jam'iyat) threatens to fine the women who want to abort, and fine, imprison, and dismiss the performing physician, if the pregnancy is not deemed to be life-threatening. The law also bans contraceptives.

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The measures are in line with the dictates of Iran's Supreme leader, Ali Khamenei. He was already denouncing birth control policies by 2018-19, though conservative elements among Iran's rulers have always dismissed birth control as a piece of Western corruption.

Today, measures to boost families include land and credit incentives for young couples, but it is difficult to say how far they will counter a marked reluctance among Iranians to marry and procreate. Kayhan-London had an online conversation with individuals affected by the new rules in Iran.

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