At the start of the 21st century, the West has plunged into crisis. Europe tries to define itself in opposition to America; America increasingly regards Europe as troublesome and irrelevant; and Britain is split down the middle. What’s to becom At the start of the 21st century, the West has plunged into crisis. Europe tries to define itself in opposition to America; America increasingly regards Europe as troublesome and irrelevant; and Britain is split down the middle. What’s to become of what we used to call “the free world”?
No contemporary thinker writes with the combination of passion, historical insight, and reportorial brilliance of Timothy Garton Ash, and here he assesses the causes and implications of our current geopolitical quandary–which dates back to the end of the Cold War and is not merely political but existential. The question is not just “What should we do?” It’s “Who should we be?”
In Free World, Garton Ash draws on an extraordinary range of sources: from unique, personal conversations with Bush, Blair, and Schröder to encounters with farmers in Kansas and British soldiers in rural England; from history, memoirs, opinion polls, and sociological research to personal observations based on a quarter century of traveling in Europe and the United States.
The result is a book that explains why Washington can never rule today’s interconnected world alone, why the new enlarged Europe can only realize its aspirations in a larger, transatlantic community, and how the torments of the Middle East and the world’s poor can only be addressed by free people working together. To remain true to itself, the West must go beyond itself. As Garton Ash shows, Americans and Europeans have at hand a unique opportunity to advance from “the free world” of the cold war to a radically new international order of liberty.
And he urges us, with passion that comes from a lifetime of reflection on these issues, to seize that chance. Defying conventional wisdom and eschewing easy answers, this incisive book should be read not just by all those who purport to lead and and inform us but by everyone who wishes to be a citizen of a truly free world.
“Free World is a model of common-sense reasoning based on strong empirical evidence. Mr. Garton Ash has given us a readable and worthy argument, rooted in a sense of what is important and what is not and based on as informed and accessible a tour of the global situation as we're likely to have.” –THE NEW YORK TIMES
A compelling manifesto for the enlargement of freedom and a new era of world politics." --VACLAV HAVEL
“Timothy Garton Ash has long been among the world’s wisest writers on Europe and America. Now, at a pivotal moment in relations across the Atlantic, he offers us a brilliant analysis–practical, without illusions, original, sparklingly well-written, and, above all, inspiring.” –MADELEINE K. ALBRIGHT
“This is an important book, refreshingly positive yet without pulling any punches. Free World demonstrates that the Transatlantic West remains the key to a better world for all–but that much will depend upon whether the EU defines itself as a partner, or as a frustrator, of America. Learn and be stimulated. You will enjoy the reading.” –GEORGE P. SHULTZ
“Not content with offering a brilliant analysis of today’s world, Timothy Garton Ash shows us what we must do to make the world a better place. He also tells us why it is reasonable to believe that this much-needed change is possible. This is a book that will inform, encourage, and even inspire readers everywhere.” –PETER SINGER, Ira W. DeCamp Professor of Bioethics, University Center for Human Values, Princeton University
“Timothy Garton Ash is one of the most astute observers of Europe and its relationship with the United States. In this important book, he dissects the currently troubled Atlantic relationship, places it in a broader global context, and provides a sense of hope for the future. He writes with grace, wit, and lucidity.” –JOSEPH S. NYE, JR., author of Soft Power: The Means to Success in World Politics