July 6, 2023
Mr. President, Mr. Prime Minister, Mr. Speaker, Ministers, fellow Ambassadors, friends:
Good evening and thank you for joining me to commemorate the 247th anniversary of the independence of the United States. It is the honor of my lifetime to represent my country in yours – to serve as the American ambassador in North Macedonia.
When the founding fathers of the United States crafted our constitution, they wrote about the pursuit of a more perfect union. Pursuit. Not a finality, not an end point – but an ongoing pursuit of something those who created our nation knew, I believe, did not ultimately exist.
For there is no truly perfect union. It is the pursuit that matters, the dogged commitment to making ourselves better, and to treating democracy not as a static state of being, but as constant hard work. That pursuit continues to this day, as we face old and new challenges in the United States.
And so it is with our union, the friendship and partnership between the United States and North Macedonia. We will never achieve the elusive “perfect” union. But the principles we share, the challenges we face — not alone, but together — will drive our union forward, in relentless pursuit of progress, prosperity, and security.
Our second president and a founding father, John Adams, said, “always stand on principle, even if you stand alone.” But our two nations need never stand alone. The principles we all hold dear will unite us, as they always have. We will chase these ideals together and we will celebrate your victories, just as you help celebrate our independence tonight.
As we reflect upon that independence, I am also struck by the conviction that democracy is not built alone. Independent nations do not rise to success singlehandedly. The United States is better, stronger, and nobler because we have allies. We have partners. Because we have friends – friends like you, like the country of North Macedonia.
Thank you again for joining us this evening — for our friendship, our partnership, and the union that we share. God bless America, and God bless the Republic of North Macedonia.