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Celebrate Independence & Cybersecurity’s Soulful Work

For many of us who celebrate Independence Day in the U.S., it is barbecue and fireworks time again this week. As I relaxed with my family on July 4th, I found myself thinking about other celebrations of national independence. Americans are not the only ones with a July date commemorating the struggle for freedom worldwide.

A sampling of nations celebrating independence in July

  • Bastille Day, or Fête nationale française (French National Day), observed on July 14, marks the anniversary of the 1789 storming of the Bastille, a Paris prison and fortress holding political prisoners. That day, populist crowds also stormed the Hôtel des Invalides looking for weapons. On August 4, the National Constituent Assembly abolished feudalism. Within weeks, the Assembly proclaimed the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen, setting the stage for France’s constitutions and declaring all individuals are free and equal under the law.
  • Bolivians in the capital city of La Paz celebrate La Paz Day every year on July 16 to commemorate the 1809 uprising of mestizos, people of European and Indigenous South American heritage, against Spanish colonial rule. This uprising sparked a 16-year struggle for independence from Spain. Bolivia was officially established as an independent country on August 6, 1825, but La Paz Day marks the start of the revolution and rebellion against colonialism and exploitation.
  • Tunisians observe Tunisia Republic Day on July 25, marking the anniversary of the 1957 Tunisian vote to abolish monarchical rule and establish a republican government with Habib Bourguiba as Prime Minister. The year prior, on March 20, Bourguiba had signed Tunisia’s declaration of independence from France. Bourguiba was succeeded as ruler in 1987 by President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, who ran the country until 2011. He resigned and fled the country during the uprisings which gave birth to 2011’s Arab Spring. Later that year, on October 23, Tunisia held free and fair elections, culminating in a democratically elected government.

These holidays all have something in common: they celebrate the establishing of a sovereign nation marked by free elections out of colonial or monarchical and feudal rule. They celebrate success in the fight against tyranny, colonialism and exploitation of the people. They all celebrate freedom.

What’s it mean for us in cybersecurity?

How do we as a community help people remain free, find safety, and keep the consent of the governed intact?

  • We protect their information, keeping it shielded from data thieves.
  • We secure critical infrastructure to keep lives safe and businesses moving forward.
  • We secure communication networks allowing for free flow of ideas and information.

This meaningful and purposeful work is our responsibility to people globally.

Independence as a national asset, shared by many worldwide

Globally, we share humanity together and desires to be free to live in our own way. We live in a global village, more interconnected now than ever before. As humanity faces the challenges ahead – climate emergency, rising violence, discrimination – we must remember our shared values.

Throughout, the cybersecurity community has a responsibility to continue our soulful work.

Let’s roll. #soulfulwork

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