Brown in US to open new chapter in UK-US relations

British Prime Minister Gordon Brown traveled to the United States on Sunday, saying he planned to use the official visit to strengthen what Britain already considers its "most important bilateral relationship." "It is a relationship that is founded on our common values of liberty, opportunity and the dignity of the individual," Brown said in a statement. "And because of the values we share, the relationship with the United States is not only strong, but can become stronger in the years ahead." Brown, making his first visit to the US as Britain's new leader, also denied speculation that the bilateral relationship was cooling. His predecessor, Tony Blair, was often accused at home of being too compliant with the policies of US President George W. Bush, especially regarding the Iraq war. Some analysts have urged Brown to be more like Prime Ministers Margaret Thatcher and Winston Churchill, who had close ties with the US but remained frank about their own goals and policies.