From a Free Radical interview with Nathaniel Branden:
Let me begin by saying that I think he has been a very underestimated man by his opponents. I think that his understanding and handling of our relationship with the Soviet Union was brilliant. Gorbachev himself gives Reagan credit for effectively ending the Cold War. Are there areas where I would disagree with him? Sure. He was opposed to abortion. He did not believe in total laissez-faire capitalism. He did build up our national debt enormously. But I tell you one thing he did that impressed me so much it almost wipes everything else off the mat. It’s something I found thrilling beyond words. And that was: he was in Russia, and he gave a speech in the University of Moscow. And the theme of the speech was to explain to the people there what American capitalism is. Here is the president of the United States, in a distinguished university in a country with whom we’ve had hostile relationships for decades—getting up, and in the most passionate yet totally non-belligerent way, explaining what economic freedom means, what capitalism means. It was so extraordinary in the moral clarity that he brought to his presentation that I’ll remember it, with great admiration, forever.