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                     Office of the Press Secretary
                          (New York, New York)
For Immediate Release                                 September 21, 1998
                       REMARKS BY THE PRESIDENT
                         AT LEADERS LUNCHEON

                         The United Nations
                         New York, New York

1:50 P.M. EDT

THE PRESIDENT: Mr. Secretary General, members of the Secretariat, President Opertti, fellow leaders, first let me thank the Secretary General for his remarks and for his leadership and echo his remarks.

Franklin Roosevelt coined the term "United Nations." I think we all agree that we are more and more united with every passing year. We are more and more against the same things, but even more important, we are more and more for the same things. The United States has been a great beneficiary of the United Nations, and we honor the location of the United Nations here and the chance to be partners with all of you.

I would like to say just one particular word about the Secretary General. I believe he has truly been the right leader for this time. In the United States we are ending the baseball season in our country and here in New York there was once a great baseball figure named Leo Durocher, whose most famous saying was "Nice guys finish last." Kofi Annan proves that Leo Durocher was wrong. He has proceeded with great kindness and decency. He has proved to all of us that change is possible and that, in his words, one can dare to make a difference.

He has stood for human rights and peace. He has demonstrated both strength and courage and humility and infinite patience. I thank him for embodying the best of what we all hope the world can become, for his leadership, for reform, for putting a good team in place, for lifting the morale of the people who work here on all our behalf. And I ask all of you to join me in a toast to the Secretary General and the staff of the United Nations.

(A toast is offered.) (Applause.)

END 1:52 P.M. EDT