Gorbachev to receive 2008 Liberty Medal for role in ending Cold War

Former Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev will be awarded the 2008 Liberty Medal for his role in helping end the Cold War. Gorbachev also gave hope to those living behind the Iron Curtain, National Constitution Center officials said in announcing the award Friday. Gorbachev will receive the award Sept. 18 at the Constitution Center. It will be presented by former President George H.W. Bush, who led the US at the time the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991. Bush is chairman of the board of the Constitution Center; he was awarded the Liberty Medal in 2006, along with former President Bill Clinton, for their efforts to aid Gulf Coast victims of Hurricane Katrina through the Bush-Clinton Katrina Fund. The National Constitution Center gives the annual award to individuals or organizations whose actions represent the founding principles of the US The medal was first awarded in 1989. Constitution Center President Joseph M. Torsella recalled Friday how Gorbachev phoned Bush as the Soviet flag was being lowered at the Kremlin for the last time.