Barack Obama stood before more than 200,000 people in Berlin and summoned Europeans and Americans to work together to bring the war in Iraq to an end, defeat terrorism and "dry up the well of extremism that supports it."
Obama said America and Europe must stand together in telling Iran to "abandon its nuclear ambitions" and insisted that "we must renew our resolve" to defeat the Taliban in Afghanistan.
Speaking in the Tiergarten, a park not far from where the Berlin Wall once stood, the presumptive Democratic nominee urged Americans, Berliners, and people of the world to work together for a better world.
"A new generation — our generation — must make our mark on history," he said.
Police spokesman Bernhard Schodrowski said the speech drew more than 200,000 people. No incidents were reported.
The speech cited the fall of the Berlin Wall, the Berlin Airlift and the Cold War, which left Berlin divided for decades.
"When you, the German people, tore down that wall — a wall that divided East and West; freedom and tyranny; fear and hope — walls came tumbling down around the world," he said. "From Kiev to Cape Town, prison camps were closed, and the doors of democracy were opened."
Referring to the unease about the decay of the trans-Atlantic relationship over the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq, the Illinois senator said that "the walls between old allies on either side of the Atlantic cannot stand."
"The walls between the countries with the most and those with the least cannot stand," he said. "The walls between races and tribes; natives and immigrants; Christian and Muslim and Jew cannot stand. These now are the walls we must tear down."
He drew applause and shouts of approval in calling for an end to the war in Iraq.
"This is the moment when the world should support the millions of Iraqis who seek to rebuild their lives, even as we pass responsibility to the Iraqi government and finally bring this war to a close," he said, drawing thunderous applause.
Joerg Zimmerman, 43, of Berlin called Obama's speech an extension of the one made by President Ronald Reagan in 1987, where he called for the Berlin Wall to be torn down.
"I liked it when he was talking about different people coming together, and when he picked up where Reagan left off about tearing down walls," he said.
Obama's speech was the centerpiece of a fast-paced tour through Europe designed to reassure skeptical voters back home about his ability to lead the country and take a frayed cross-Atlantic alliance in a new direction after eight years of the Bush administration.
He's already been to the Middle East, Iraq and Afghanistan.
Republicans, chafing at the media attention Obama's campaign-season trip has drawn, sought to stoke doubts abut his claims.
In Die Welt, the German publication, Rep. Thaddeus McCotter, R-Mich., said: "No one knows which Obama will show. Will it be the ideological, left-wing Democratic primary candidate who vowed to 'end' the war rather than win it, or the Democratic nominee who dismisses the progressing coalition victory as a 'distraction'? Will it be the American populist who has told supporters in the United States that he will demand more from our allies in Europe and get it, or the liberal internationalist hell-bent on being liked in Europe's salons?"
Obama met earlier in the day with German Chancellor Angela Merkel for a discussion that ranged across the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, climate change and energy issues.Reuse content