America is much more than a country. It is much more than a land or a group of people that came together to form a nation. Ultimately, the United States is a symbol. It is the world’s fullest and greatest embodiment of capitalism, democracy, and freedom. It is the land of the free, the home of the brave, a source of hope, and a defender of justice.
Many may not understand the significance of America as an ideal. Some in the United States and Europe have lived comfortably for decades, never been invaded, never lost their land or property, nor their freedom to think or speak. As a result, they can’t value what they already have. It’s an unfortunate reality that you often have to lose something to fully understand its worth.
My country, Albania, is small today, but in the past, the ancestral lands of my people once spread throughout the Balkans. We had the first queen in Europe, gave the Vatican four popes, provided emperors who shaped history and survived through the strong men and women who died for their country, their traditions, and their families.
Nevertheless, neighboring countries with the help of larger empires and states in Europe slowly took our territories and forced into flight large parts of our population. More than 100 years ago, only one country stood up for us, fought for our territorial integrity, and helped us retain the borders we have today: the United States of America.
One doesn’t need to travel further back in time than a few generations to find Albania at the mercy of the red terror known as communism. History was warped and changed, important historical figures were erased, monuments were destroyed, churches and mosques were torn down, and religion found itself hanging in the balance.
Most of what George Orwell writes in his book 1984, communists and far-left terrorists tried to do in Albania. Sure, there was universal health care, free schooling, and no private property. Everything was centralized by the government into the hands of a few well-connected party insiders. As a result, people starved, lost their humanity, and turned against each other.
Our “universal health care” was light-years behind similar systems found in the West. Our “free schools” taught only what the regime allowed. You could go to prison or die for saying the wrong thing or wearing the wrong outfit.
Yet, while Europe abandoned Albania, we fixed a hopeful gaze beyond the Atlantic. All freedom-loving individuals hoped day and night that America would come to save us. In time, by defeating the Soviet Union and ensuring the fall of the Iron Curtain, it eventually did. “Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall,” remains one of the most consequential phrases of all time.
Despite 45 years of propaganda demonizing the United States, the Albanian people never forgot what President Reagan often referred to as the “shining city on a hill.” Indeed, no matter the torture and the brainwashing the regime tried, it could never remove the desire for freedom. The desire for freedom, meritocracy, and justice are deeply ingrained in the human soul.
When he arrived in Albania after the fall of the regime, much to his surprise, U.S. Secretary of State James Baker was greeted by hundreds of thousands of people. The cheers he heard, the sympathy he received, and the thanks he was given were aimed at what he represented. Make no mistake, the American standard is what every nation on Earth should aspire to.
Today, however, as America finds itself under attack, it falls upon not just Americans, but to every one of us to return the favor and stand beside it in its hour of need. The ideology that invaded my country for half a century, tore down monuments and tradition, replaced freedom with oppression, prohibited freedom of speech, encouraged spying, swapped hope with terror, and brought famine instead of prosperity, is now trying to destroy the United States of America.
This evil ideology knows as long as America exists, all nations will look at it for strength, inspiration, and courage, and will fight for their dignity and freedoms. The heralds of the radical leftist ideology infecting the United States have gathered their strength and are trying to destroy American. A nation that gives equal opportunities to every man and woman, the population who welcomes everyone into its bosom, the system that encourages economic success, entrepreneurship, innovation, and risk-taking is now facing threats from within.
Leftist fascists who hate what America stands for want to transform it into a censorious, barren land of misery, without identity or soul. They can not — or refuse — to understand what America has brought to the world through blood and sweat. They do not comprehend or understand the greatness of the American model, so they loathe it. Because the modern radical left is unable to appreciate hard work, love for country, meritocracy, protecting history, or valuing tradition, they do what they do best: destroy.
Heated rhetoric about racial equality is being used as a siren’s song to brainwash the weak and the vulnerable, as the left often does. A future with such people in charge would lead to the confiscation of property, high taxes, and the rewriting of history. This has happened in many countries in the last century.
I am confident the United States will not be fooled and will continue to stand for what is right. Otherwise, a weakened United States would pose an awful danger to the whole world, with a nuclear-powered Iran, Chinese expansion, and an emboldened Russia filling the power vacuum. Europe is already weak; the planet can’t afford to lose the United States as well.
Still, hope remains. I see it every day and not just in America. President Trump stands in front of the advance of the radical leftists in the United States and he inspires others to follow his example in Europe. He has vowed that America will never be a socialist country. The history of America is filled with inspiring stories of those who stood up, never gave up hope, and resolutely worked for a better future. A strong and prosperous United States means a safer and better world.
Every period in history features strong kingdoms or empires. We have to be grateful that the “empire” of our modern age is, as Thomas F. Madden has noted, a freedom-loving empire of commerce and trust, not of conquest, setting an inspirational example for everyone who longs for a better future.
So, here’s to America winning this lastest, most crucial battle — not only for its sake but for all of us who live on this good earth.