Excerpts from remarks by Chargé d’Affaires Tom Goldberger at the 2016 Independence Day celebration

U.S. Embassy Cairo

Good evening everyone.

My name is Tom Goldberger, I am the Deputy Chief of Mission, and currently the Charge d’Affaires.

On behalf of our entire Embassy community, welcome to this celebration of the 240th anniversary of the Independence of the United States of America.

All of us are deeply saddened by the recent aviation tragedy that took place over the Mediterranean. We offer our condolences to the bereaved and to all Egyptians.

We join you in looking forward to happier days, to Egypt’s success and its flourishing in a region and in a world that is at peace.

Today we are celebrating American patriotism. We are especially highlighting American diversity under the theme of “Route 66.”

The highway opened in 1926, 90 years ago this year. In the hard years that followed, the years of the Dust Bowl and the Great Depression, millions of Americans traveled along Route 66 as they left behind hard times in the East and Midwest to seek a better future in sunny California.

Route 66 represents for Americans the values of freedom, hope, and progress.

To understand the story of Route 66, then, is to understand a bit about the American Dream — the freedom to move, explore, and better oneself and others — along with the optimism that anything is possible with vision and hard work.

This is an American Dream, but a dream that we believe we share with others, including Egyptians, and we are grateful for the chance to celebrate it with you this evening.