This is something which makes me immensely proud being Danish, our small country making a difference and standing firm on our Western values, willing to take a fight against radicalization and tyranny from a stand based on the firm believe that our Western values are superior to any other, and not being shy about it, not even from highest levels.
Being proud of the best Prime Minister I can ever think of in our nation's history, Anders Fogh Rasmussen, being proud of the fact that he has been chosen as the new Secretary General of NATO, the highest ranking international position any Dane has ever achieved.
Being proud of that his economic policies paid off all the country's foreign dept by 2006 which we less than a decade ago saw as an almost impossible task, being proud of the lowest unemployment rate ever as well as tax cuts plus a maximum ceiling for taxation, ridding the country of leftist clunky burocracy streamlining the public sector.
Being proud of our country's contribution in Afghanistan and in Iraq with outstanding results in Afghanistan in Helmand, the most volatile region were our troops are engaging and killing countless of Taliban, despite having the highest casualty rate of any NATO country engaged in Afghanistan, being proud of our troops who's professionalism is outstanding and for most to envy.
Being proud of the way Anders Fogh Rasmussen handled the cartoon crisis not giving an inch or selling out any of our western values, with a firmness and strong believe in our freedom, freedom of speech and Western values whom all of us are benefitting.
Being proud of Anders Fogh Rasmussen's ability to stay in touch with what the majority of Danes think, respecting them as individuals and on an eyelevel with the people.
Being proud of a former Prime Minister not afraid being proud of his achievements and unwavering principles, especially in this day and age it takes more than just guts, it takes skills and an unwavering believe in what is good for the nation and our fundamental Western values.
being proud of the fact that he developed a personal friendship with the former American President George W Bush, and one of the two people who was invited to Camp David in Bush' reign as well as several times on his ranch and Bush celebrating his birthday in Copenhagen.
Being proud of that Anders fogh Rasmussen has been declared the big enemy of Islam by Al'Qaeda and the Taliban, a badge of honor.
This guy got more than just balls and deserves to be cloned and put in charge in the rest of the Western nations, truly a politician who can inspire.
Fogh's speech and interview the 12th of May in the Danish parliament underscores further that he intents to stand firm in his believes and that Western values are above all! And superior to any other flying around.
Translated from Politikken the 12th of May
There is one thing, which stands above everything else, when Anders Fogh Rasmussen looks back upon his time as Prime Minister: Western values.
There is almost something symbolic about Anders Fogh Rasmussen's (V: Classical Liberal) temporary office in the Foreign Ministry.
From the corner office in the State Ministry he is now back at the groundfloor again - At eyelevel with the Danes. Exactly there, at the very place where one way or the other the whole thing started.
Because when Anders Fogh Rasmussen today summarizes the project, with which he got the voters total support to bring into life in November 2001, it dealt with regaining the voters confidence to the politicians, whom for years had ignored the Danes worries over the increasing immigration, the sloppy justice policy og the elite's domination and know-all attitude.
Proud of the results
Fogh declares, that he is proud of the factual results, he has entrusted to Lars Løkke Rasmussen (The new Prime Minister replacing Fogh). A historical low unemployment rate, a considerable decrease in immigrant family reunions, and a solid ceiling for taxation. Nevertheless it isn't the "factual account" in Fogh's reign, which occupies him the most, but the bottom line in the battle of values, he had put on the political agenda.
A battle, which sent Danish soldiers in war in Iraq, divided the parliament and settled up against the cultural radical influx, that Western values of freedom are better than any other forms of governing.
"First and foremost I want to say, that it was and is a value based - and firm attitude project. One could summarize it in one word and say, what I would like to leave my mark on, is 'Cultural [Classical] Liberalisme' - And with that you are welcome to perceive as the contrary to Cultural radicalism" says Anders Fogh Rasmussen.
Free spirited and a firmness on [Western] values
The coming Secretary General of NATO is busy putting the words on the project, which a majority of the Danes has preferred 3 times in a row instead of a new Social Democratic led government, which has with but a few exceptions been the tradition throughout the 20th century.
"To be a Cultural [classical] Liberal is a combination of free spririt and a firm attitude towards values. I feel a strong connection with the European tradition of enlightenment. The believe in the individual as a being of reason. The believe based on enlightenment and education. It concludes with the bottom line attitude, that one has to be critical towards autorities - That I am in the settlement with the know-all expert might. We deserves a society with the freedom to be different, a society with pluralism, where we do not interfere with, what people believe, what they eat, how they are dressed - Yes, there have to be space for both the funny and far out people"
Speaking about Denmark as just being a country without multiplicity Fogh often had to listen to, but he rejects it.
Under his leadership the government on the contrary has shown openness in face of international currents. Openness for active participation in international co-orporations plus an engagement to undertake a responsibility in the world,he thinks.
"The extrovert free spirited attitude - And that being combined with a firmness on values, wherein the first element is demand and consequence".
Demanding is to show respect
"You can't just pay-out money to young people - You have to say, that if you don't want to work, if you don't want to educate yourself, then you close the wallet. You can't just say, that it doesn't matter, if you contribute or do not contribute - If you have got that attitude, that it doesn't matter, then it is the same as saying, that nobody and nothing matters, and from you we can't expect anything"
Because demanding is to show respect, he affirms.
"That to make demands and show consequence - Is in reality to respect other people: It is, whether we talk about the social system or opholding justice" Says Fogh and turns the conversations towards his battle of values.
"The other part is the firmness of values. That is to say, that there exist as a fact some absolute values in our society. That is why I strongly reject the cultural relativism - According to which, that you can not say, if something is better than something else.
Of course you can, freedom of speech is better than censorship and dictatotship. Equality between women and men is better than oppression of women. The seperation between politics and religion is better than a so called theocracy - That is, a society ruled by priests.
Cultural radicals are deeply pessimistic
According to Fogh cultural [classical] liberalism is in sharp contrast to cultural radicalism, the [classical] liberalism is founded on the believe in progress, believing in the future, whereas you often experience cultural radicals as "deeply pessimistic". It is therefore the cultural [classical] liberals have taken over the national political agenda, and that is something, Fogh isn't ashamed off at all.
The Danish identity has played a central role in connection with the shift of power, and that it should always be, he thinks.
"I don't believe in the abstract human being - The abstract cosmopolitan, there doesn't belong anywhere at all. we are all born into a certain community, an identity, from where our world begins. So it belongs to be a cultural [classical] liberal, that at the same time we are open towards the rest of the world, we have got a clear foundation in our national identity, and is conscience about, what it means to be Danish."
"As a cultural liberal you have got the believe, that there have to be a strong national community, and a strong national identity. You have to take as a starting point, that we are all born into a community. We Danes are born into a national Danish community - That is our identity. And it is my clear understanding, that the stronger the identity, the more you are ready to fight for those values, our Democracy is founded on"
Danish special forces in Afghanistan
As a newly appointed Prime Minister back in January 2002 Fogh decided to send Danish special forces into Afghanistan. A difficult decision, but in spite of that he was never in any doubt that it was the right thing. The same goes for the decision to send Danish soldiers into Iraq on a tight political mandate - a historical decision. But Fogh rejects the very notion, that it divided the Danish population.
"The very fact, that I was elected to be the Prime Minister and re-elected twice since, disprove, that I shopuld have divided the population. So we have to be careful to distinguish - What is parliament and what is the people, and what is the medias? All the polls are showing a broad majority in support of for exampel the policy based on [Western] values.
But the war in Iraq and Afghanistan stands for Fogh as natural offshots from the battle of [Western] values, he had made his project since 2001.
"It is about values and principles. When the Danes wishes for freedom and peace, then we also have to contribute with efforts. We can't just let it be something others have to fight for"
And principles, values and attitudes will always stand as the final difference on Fogh and his opponents, he thinks. Because since 2001 there have not been any tampering with the project's foundation.
"Fact is, the case that we won the election in 2001, is exactly the same, as we won in 2005 and 2007. Because, when it comes to the economy, then we have got the tax ceiling, and when it comes to the opinion making, then we have the immigration policies. Both elements were decisive in 01, 05 and 07.
"Was I any surprised it would would be decisive - No, in 2001 we knew, that we had two positions of strength. To which point it would be upheld into the taking of office, we couldn't know in advance. So in that regard I am positively surprised it has shown such a strength" Says the former Prime Minister.