Nothing is lost

Since the collapse of the Soviet bloc, citizens of democracies believed that their security and future were guaranteed. Western nations remained convinced of the universal superiority of their values, institutions, technologies and armies. A huge mistake! 1989, like 1918, was a failed peace.

As in the 1930s, the free nations did not want to see the danger of their enemies. From then on, authoritarian regimes took advantage of the West’s weaknesses to strengthen themselves militarily, politically and ideologically, from the China of Xi Jinping to the Russia of Vladimir Putin. These empires share a common detestation of political freedom. They claim the superiority of their model and intend to use armed force to bring about a post-Western world order based on arbitrariness and violence.

But nothing is lost. The aggression in Ukraine is a tragic but salutary warning. The democracies still have immense resources to resist, provided they overcome their internal crises and unite in the defence of their interests and values. The West must regain awareness of its heritage and its unity in order to thwart the threats of authoritarian empires. This is not a time for lamenting, but for mobilising to save freedom.

(“Démocraties contre empires autoritaires” – Éd. de l’Observatoire, March 2023)


Nicolas Baverez   twitter   linkedin