- 13 October 2015 - 14 October 2015
Policy Program | Second Berlin Transatlantic Conference: "Western Values under Siege. How Open Societies Compete in a Multipolar World"
The end of the Cold War led many to think, that the ideological battle between East and West would be over. From now on, it was assumed, most nations, if not all, would strive to adopt the model of Western liberal democracy and its foundation of universal human rights. This vision did not materialize. Instead, countries like Russia and China today openly oppose the concept of Western values and declare them to be inconsistent with their own civilizations and traditions. They even present themselves as an alternate model. Islamic extremists especially ISIS stun the world with their barbarism and ability t o attract young followers in the West.
On October 14, the Berlin Transatlantic Conference brought together distinguished experts and decision-makers from both sides of the Atlantic and an audience of 170 guests to discuss the state of Western Values and search for ways, how the West can restore credibility and promote the strength and attractiveness of its ideals without betraying them. In her greeting address to the conference, German Chancellor Angela Merkel stressed the importance of shared values: “In our transatlantic community of shared values as elsewhere, we are called upon to act by crises like those in Ukraine and Syria, by international terrorism and by the many million s of people fleeing war, violence and poverty. It is therefore all the more important for us to be conscious of our values, keep faith with our convictions and to act in concert with our transatlantic partners.”