Full transcript as prepared for delivery of Prime Minister Gordon Brown's remarks to a joint meeting of Congress.
Madam Speaker, Mr Vice-President, distinguished members of Congress, I come to this great capital of this great nation, an America renewed under a new President to say that America's faith in the future has been, is and always will be an inspiration to the whole world.
The very creation of America was a bold affirmation of faith in the future: a future you have not just believed in but built with your own hands.
And on January 20th, you the American people began to write the latest chapter in the American story, with a transition of dignity, in which both sides of the aisle could take great pride. President Obama gave the world renewed hope, and on that day billions of people truly looked to Washington D.C as "a shining city upon a hill".
And I hope that you will allow me to single out for special mention today one of your most distinguished Senators, known in every continent and a great friend. Northern Ireland is today at peace, more Americans have health care, more children around the world are going to school, and for all those things we owe a great debt to the life and courage of, Senator Edward Kennedy.
And so today, having talked to him last night, I want to announce that Her Majesty The Queen, has awarded an honorary Knighthood for Sir Edward Kennedy.
Madam Speaker, Mr Vice-President, I come in friendship to renew, for new times, our special relationship founded upon our shared history, our shared values and, I believe, our shared futures.
I grew up in the 1960s as America, led by President Kennedy, looked to the heavens and saw not the endless void of the unknown, but a new frontier to dare to discover and explore. People said it couldn't be done - but America did it.
And 20 years later, in the 1980's, America led by President Reagan refused to accept the fate of millions trapped behind an Iron Curtain, and insisted instead that the people of Eastern Europe be allowed to join the ranks of nations which live safe, strong and free. People said it would never happen in our lifetime but it did, and the Berlin Wall was torn down brick by brick.
So early in my life I came to understand that America is not just the indispensible nation, it is the irrepressible nation.
Throughout your history Americans have led insurrections in the human imagination, have summoned revolutionary times through your belief that there is no such thing as an impossible endeavour. It is never possible to come here without having your faith in the future renewed.
Throughout a whole century the American people stood liberty's ground not just in one world war but in two.
And I want you to know that we will never forget the sacrifice and service of the American soldiers who gave their lives for people whose names they never knew, and whose faces they never saw, and yet people who have lived in freedom thanks to the bravery and valour of the Americans who gave the "last full measure of devotion".
Cemetery after cemetery across Europe honours the memory of American soldiers, resting row upon row - often alongside comrades-in-arms from Britain. There is no battlefield of liberty on which there is not a piece of land that is marked out as American and there is no day of remembrance in Britain that is not also a commemoration of American courage and sacrifice far from home.