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The post originally appeared on the Freedom Collection’s blog: Freedom Square.
Former Prime Minister Tony Blair was one of several world leaders in attendance at Southern Methodist University for the April 2013 dedication of the George W. Bush Presidential Center. During this occasion, the Freedom Collection had an opportunity to chat with Mr. Blair about different aspects of human freedom. Mr. Blair’s perspectives on the responsibility of free societies to support people languishing under tyranny were insightful.
He commented that individuals in democratic societies sometimes take their liberty for granted, perhaps forgetting that (thankfully) “we don’t have any idea what it’s like to wake up and not have our basic freedoms.” Mr. Blair reminded us there are those living in dictatorships whose daily routine consists of dreading a “knock on the door by the secret police” and having their freedom suppressed. One mission of the Freedom Square blog is to offer compelling arguments as to why individuals in free societies have a unique responsibility to, “celebrate the freedom we have, but not hoard it, and go out and share its huge liberating sense of possibility.”
Chinese Prisoner’s Death Holds a Message for Americans and China
Liu Xiaobo, China’s most prominent dissident and Nobel Peace Prize winner died this week. His death holds a message for Americans and for China.
Release of Chinese Political Prisoner a Timely Reminder to Support Freedom Advocates Abroad
More than half the world’s population still lives in countries where basic political rights and civil liberties are only partly respected, if at all.
Bringing Freedom to the Forefront of 21st Century Politics
Is the global liberal democratic order in danger? Purposefully constructed in the aftermath of World War II, this order -- and the American leadership that is central to its success --has contributed to securing peace and expanding prosperity in the United States and around the world. Today, that order appears to be dissolving. This crisis is not new or sudden; it has been mounting for several years. Global challenges like authoritarian capitalism, violent extremism, demographic pressures, and displaced populations have placed global freedom in decline. Fraying traditional alliances united by core values of freedom are increasingly weak to respond. It is alarming that the downdraft in democratic resilience over the past decade or more includes countries that have long been part of the consolidated democratic West. This is democratic deconsolidation. In much of the Western world, we see a rise in demagogic populism, illiberalism, nationalism, protectionism, and waning conf
The Importance of Speaking Truth to Tyrants
What the president of the United States says matters. Even during the realpolitik policies of détente under Richard Nixon, it was still clear that American policy was based on a set of core values. Nixon’s practical goals of reaching deals with America’s adversaries was never based on the “great chemistry” with himself or praising the Soviet or Communist Chinese leadership doing a “fantastic job.” When the president aligns himself with the autocrats and dictators, he aligns America with their oppression. He sends a message that corruption and brutality are not our concern. Contrast that with how Ronald Reagan defied much of world opinion in calling out the brutality of the Soviet system. Natan Sharansky, then a refusenik imprisoned in a Soviet gulag, later wrote for the Weekly Standard of his thoughts on Reagan’s pronouncement that the USSR was an evil empire: “It was the great, brilliant moment whe