The former Czech President Vaclav Klaus spoke recently at a conference in Washington dedicated to the memory of Pope John Paul II and US President Ronald Reagan and their role in the fall of communism in Europe. The theme in Klaus’s speech was “Let us not forget” and it was a call for the re-liberation of Europe.
Klaus began by paying tribute to the two great statesmen for their role in the collapse of the communist bloc, saying that without them there would be no President Vaclav Klaus nor many others. He also warned the organizers that, in his opinion, there was a third one, missing from the ones mentioned, a great stateswoman, the British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. She was on par with the Holy Father and the President of the United States during that turning point.
Klaus said that while millions in Central and Eastern Europe suffered under the Communist regime, the West was living in a period of peace and abundance, and in this complacency, it slowly slid towards the political left. The three – John Paul II, Reagan and Thatcher – correctly understood the developments, said Klaus. That is why they did all that was in their power, not only by helping the sufferers in the countries of the Communist bloc in collapsing the totalitarian regime, but also by directing the West away from the left political spectrum. This was possible only with the advocacy of conservative social values and the free market capitalist system, which proved to be right. Klaus said that people, sick of their communist dictators, looked at the above-mentioned three, within whom they searched for inspiration, and hoped for their help in their liberation. Other European politicians of the time – Mitterrand, Kohl or Delors – were not taken seriously by the people behind the Iron Curtain (neither were they taken seriously by the ruling Communist supreme). Nor did they expect anything special from them, as they did not pursue the conservative European values wanted by the people who suffered under the communist scourge. It turned out that Reagan, Thatcher and John Paul II took the West in the right direction, since it triumphed, while the communist block collapsed.
Unfortunately, a regrettable mistake happened next, said Klaus. After the victory of the Western, conservative values and the defeat of communism, the people in the West put down their guard. They were convinced, at that point, that the restoration of the left-wing movement was no longer possible. The defeated left only backed down for a while, then put itself back together and reemerged, expanding in the form of the “New Left,” the liberal left, the green left…While Reagan, Thatcher, and John Paul II were retreating from the political scene together with their colleagues, this New Left set up new political parties. What is even worse, it infiltrated the old bourgeois parties. The result of this silent takeover is political leaders like Macron, Merkel, May, Juncker…
The result is the quiet transition of Europe towards the political left, which is much worse than the one during the seventies. In particular, this transition is visible in countries in the western part of the continent, in those which never experienced communist dictatorship directly. This New Left is trying to erase from the record in every way the great forgotten people, the real Conservatives who have contributed to the collapse of the communist bloc. For this reason, nowadays, especially in the West, John Paul II, Reagan and Thatcher are almost forgotten, and when they are not forgotten about, their contributions are presented in a distorted way.
In the end, Klaus said that Europe needs strong policies with clearly expressed conservative values, in order to turn it away from the political left, back to the true conservative values of the political right.