Liz warns of ‘woke’ West allowing Russia and China to gain ground

Liz Truss will warn the “woke” West is allowing Russia and China to gain ground by failing to stand up for freedom.

The former prime minister will say Britain and the United States were once bastions of free speech and enterprise but are now caught up in a cycle of “self-flagellation” over their past.

Low growth, high taxes and a big state have become a “disease” that will “damage freedom”.

She will say: “It was Anglo-American individualism that made the world prosperous.

“Low taxes, limited government and private enterprise were what won the Cold War. I worry that we are now seeing this model strangled into stagnation*.”

Ms Truss will make the attack when she gives the Margaret Thatcher Freedom Lecture at the Heritage Foundation think-tank in Washington DC today.

She will say the UK and US have failed to stand up for their core values.

“We’ve allowed our opponents to own our institutions, crowd our campuses and fill our airwaves,” Ms Truss will argue.

“Not long ago the United States and the United Kingdom were absolute bastions of free enterprise, free markets and free speech.”

“But what we’ve seen now is self-flagellation – lashing out at the very things that made us great.”

“We have to spell out what individual liberty means and it is the pathway to fulfilment, not identity politics. We have to be brave in challenging those who seek to ‘cancel’ people because they simply express a view with which they disagree.”

“We need to tell people the truth about what happened in the Cold War and how freedom won and what life is really like under communism.”

Ms Truss will criticise French President Emmanuel Macron for showing “weakness” when he asked Chinese leader Xi Jinping to help stop Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine.

She will urge the free world to “get real” about the threat from authoritarian regimes and warn “our opponents have felt they can act with impunity”.

“Putin and Xi have made it clear they are allies against Western capitalism,” she will say. “That is why *Western leaders visiting President Xi to ask for his support in ending the war is a mistake. And it is a sign of weakness.”

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