Increasing authoritarianism in some countries, such as Russia, coupled with gradual democratic erosion around the world, poses an exceptional threat to a rules-based global order, and consequently to peace and prosperity. The invasion of Ukraine is the most blatant and tragic realization of this threat.
Fundamentally, peace and democracy in Europe do not depend only on military, material and financial support for Ukraine. They also depend on dedicated, coherent and long-term action to defend democracy at the state level from foreign and domestic threats. Democracy does not flourish through benign neglect and positive thinking. It flourishes when the entirety of the polity, from student unions to the cabinet, understand the work that democracy requires and the enemies that it faces.