Time

Top 25 political speeches of all time: 25-13

As Supreme Allied Commander in Europe, Gen Eisenhower announced the D-Day landings at Normandy to the people of France and Western Europe. Warning them of further loss and tragedy ahead, he advised the Resistance to be patient and wait for orders. Eleven months later, the Germans surrendered. “Great battles lie ahead. I call upon all who love freedom to stand with us. Keep your faith staunch – our arms are resolute – together we shall achieve victory.”

Full speech: D-Day broadcast to the people of Western Europe

23 Nikita Khrushchev, February 25, 1956

Delivered in secret before a rapt audience of Communist apparatchiks, this remarkable speech by a Soviet leader helped destroy Stalin’s reputation. Khrushchev launched a full blooded attack on the pillar of the Soviet system, who had been venerated for much of his life. Speaking three years after Stalin’s death, Khrushchev dwelt on his paranoia and brutality. “Stalin

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Napoleon: Politics in Napoleon’s Time

France
under the rule of Bourbon King Louis XVI was the envy of Europe.
During his reign beginning in 1774, France had more people
and wealth than any another nation on the continent. From
his glittering palace of Versailles, Louis XVI and his wife
Marie Antoinette pilfered France’s resources while their
people suffered.

Across
the Atlantic in America, Great Britain’s thirteen colonies
declared their independence from the rule of King George III
on July 4, 1776. France, seizing the opportunity to regain
colonies lost to the English, entered the war and helped secure
American independence.

Thomas
Jefferson drew upon the ideas of the Enlightenment —
the rationalist, liberal, and humanitarian trend in 18th-century
thought — in defining the rights and privileges of citizens
in the Constitution of the United States. Similar ideas had
planted firm roots in Europe. Enlightened despots such as
Holy Roman Emperor Joseph II, Catherine II of

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