Our society is the product of several great religious and philosophical traditions. The ideas of the Greeks and Romans, Christianity, Judaism, humanism and the Enlightenment have made us who we are.
Freedom is a universal value.
The horrors of the Second World War, the chilling winds of the Cold War and the crushing weight of the Iron Curtain are little more than fading memories. Ideals that once commanded great loyalty are now taken for granted.
Bitter experience has taught us how fundamental our values are and how great the mission they represent.
The generation which lived through the Second World War is disappearing. Post-war generations see Europe's great achievements - liberty, peace and prosperity - as a given.
Terrorism is an evil that threatens all the countries in Europe. Vigorous cooperation in the European Union and worldwide is crucial in order to meet this evil head on.
Day after day we must remember we can take freedom for granted. Day after day we must keep the bond between freedom and other values in mind.
We can prevent Europe from becoming a spiritless machine that, in the end, grinds to a halt.
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