On behalf of the Government of the United States, and of the American people, it is my duty and my privilege to express to all of you, the distinguished members of the International Astronomical Union, a most cordial welcome to this country.
In this gathering are learned scientists from every continent and latitude, from Australia to that ancient cradle of astronomy, Egypt. We heartily welcome you all to the United States. And since Moscow was the site of your most recent Assembly three years ago, it is my particular pleasure to greet the large and distinguished delegation which has come here from the Soviet Union.
For yours is a community of the mind—ordered by reason, united in the single pursuit of truth about the universe. We who try to keep the peace among unruly nations cannot help envying and admiring your unity and purity of purpose. Would that all of us at the United Nations could follow your example, would that all of us could unite to end cold war and conflict, and concentrate on the arts of peace and the wider enjoyment of the benefits of this age of unparalleled technical progress.