The run-up to the president’s long-promised event shows both promise and peril.

In some ways, President Joe Biden’s long-promised Summit for Democracy could not be better timed. The virtual gathering, set for Thursday and Friday, comes as people from Cuba to Belarus have hit the streets in recent years to demand a say in their governance — or, at least, some accountability from their leaders. And it comes as Western leaders have grown increasingly wary of the tactics and intentions of the ruling Chinese Communist Party and alarmed about renewed Russian aggression toward Ukraine.

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