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The Honorable John Howard was Prime Minister of Australia from 1996 to 2007 and won four consecutive general elections. He presided over a period of unprecedented economic growth and prosperity, and of Australian leadership in world affairs. After the 9/11 attacks, he announced Australia’s “steadfast commitment to work with the United States,” and committed Australia’s military to the war in Afghanistan. In 2003, Australia joined the U.S. in Operation Iraqi Freedom, after Howard stated that this “is right, it is lawful, and it is in Australia’s national interest.” In 2009, he received the United States Presidential Medal of Freedom from President George W. Bush.
In this, the seventh Margaret Thatcher Freedom Lecture, Howard will speak on the convictions that have guided him throughout his political life. As a proud defender of economic freedom and the traditional values of the English-speaking nations, he believes that the continued threats to Western society require the nations of the Anglosphere not only to retain but also to reassert their cultural self-belief.
The open, democratic systems of the Anglosphere nations, with their commitment to press freedom, robust political competition and the rule of law, means they have a special role to play in the advance of liberty and prosperity around the world. While multilateral institutions have a place, the world is still made up of nation states. The experience of recent years has taught us that excessive reliance on multilateral institutions is misguided and that cooperative effort between like-minded societies, like the United States and Australia, remains essential.
More About the Speakers
The Honorable John Howard
Former Prime Minister of Australia
Nile Gardiner, Ph.D.
Director, Margaret Thatcher Center for Freedom