Home Today's Paper Most Popular Video Gallery Photo Gallery
Subscription Blog Signin Register
Logo
Monday, August 20, 2018 10:45:50 AM
Follow Us On: Facebook Twitter Twitter Twitter Twitter

Putin's disdain for liberal democracy hurts the West

By
09th-Aug-2018       
Comments
Share your thought
Post a comment »
Read all () »

E J Dionne :
The links among Vladimir Putin, US President Trump, and segments of both the Republican Party and the American conservative movement seem bizarre. How can this be, given the Russian president's KGB pedigree and a Cold War history during which antipathy toward the Soviet Union held the right together?
In truth, there is nothing illogical about the ideological collusion that is shaking our political system. If the old Soviet Union was the lynchpin of the Communist International, Putin's Russia is creating a new Reactionary International built around nationalism, a critique of modernity and a disdain for liberal democracy. Its central mission includes wrecking the Western alliance and the European Union by undermining a shared commitment to democratic values.
Putin is, first and foremost, an opportunist, so he is also happy to lend support to forces on the left when doing so advances his purposes in specific circumstances. But the dominant thrust of Putinism is toward the far right, since a nationalism rooted in Russian traditionalism cements his hold on power.
And the right in both Europe and the United States has responded. Long before Russia's efforts to elect Trump in the 2016 election became a major public issue, Putin was currying favour with the American gun lobby, Christian conservatives and Republican politicians.
In a prescient March 2017 article in Time magazine, Alex Altman and Elizabeth Dias detailed Russia's "new alliances with leading US evangelicals, lawmakers and powerful interest groups like the NRA."
Altman and Dias highlighted the role of Maria Butina, a Russian national who was in court last week following her indictment for conspiring to act as a foreign agent.
Butina was at the forefront of forging Russian ties with the NRA. In 2015, many of its leaders travelled to Russia to attend her annual gun-rights conference, Altman and Dias reported. Such a meeting is absurd on its face given Russia's autocratic nature. It should be a bigger scandal than it has been so far that those who speak so much about Constitutional liberties and individual freedom have cozied up to Putin.
The Russian president did not have to invent Europe's new right. It was rising without him, although he has been happy to help it along. Writing in New Statesman British centre-left magazine, veteran journalist John Lloyd described the formation of what he called an "Illiberal International" that seeks to limit immigration and weaken or destroy the European Union.
Lloyd focused on Sebastian Kurz, the Austrian chancellor; Victor Orban, Hungary's prime minister; and Matteo Salvini, Italy's interior minister whose Lega party is now in a coalition government with the Five-Star movement.
It's important to recognise that something more is going on here than merely a generalised effort to disrupt American and European politics. Putin is pushing in a very particular direction, a lesson that should be absorbed across our philosophical divides.
The deepening ties between the Russian government and elements of the right should give pause to all conservatives whose first commitment is to democratic life. The willingness of traditionalists and gun fanatics to cultivate ties with a Russian dictator speaks of a profound alienation among many on the right from core Western values - the very values that most conservatives extol.
It should bother members of the GOP that the progressive writer Brian Beutler was on to something when he observed recently that "in many ways, Moscow understood Republicans better than Republicans understand themselves." Putin saw that what he and parts of the right share is a hatred of liberalism.
And Republicans should bear in mind that disrupting Robert Mueller's probe serves Putin's interests, not just Trump's.
In the meantime, progressives and moderates should not be intimidated by those, including Trump apologists, who claim that standing up to Putin's intervention in our election represents an effort to revive the Cold War. No, opposing Putin is principled, rational and necessary because he is waging a campaign against democracy and is working to undermine the pluralism and tolerance on which it depends.
It's odd that self-styled opponents of globalisation who shout slogans about putting their own countries "first" are actually putting their ideology first as they seek to globalise the far right. Friends of democracy everywhere need to stand in solidarity and resist this backward-looking drift to autocracy.

(Washington Post Writers Group).

Tariff
Add Rate

News Archive

Inside The New Nation

Editorial »

Growing violence in hills: No serious investigation into the killings


Seven people, including three leaders of United People's Democratic Front (UPDF), were killed and six others injured in two gun attacks in Khagrachhari town on Saturday. With these, 33 people have so far been killed in violence in Rangamati and Khagrachhari this year. The UPDF alleged that it was a ...

Entertainment »

I like to do something that challenges me: Jennifer Winget


Bepannaah actress Jennifer Winget likes to challenge herself with each of her projects. “I like to do something that challenges me. I like to do something different from my previous characters,” Jennifer told IANS. “I have been fortunate enough to be offered characters and projects that challenge me and that ...

City »

Dhaka South City Corporation (DSCC) Mayor Sayeed Khokon speaking at a gathering of cleaners on quick disposal of wastes of sacrificial animals yesterday.


.

International »

Russian President Putin steals the show at Austrian FM`s wedding


Reuters, Vienna :Russian President Vladimir Putin danced arm-in-arm with Austria's foreign minister Karin Kneissl at her wedding on Saturday, after receiving an invitation that opposition critics said undermined the West's stance against Moscow.Mr Putin arrived in a car carrying a bouquet of flowers and accompanied, local media said, by a ...

Editorial »

Sanctions by USA and European Union are welcome but more effective measures will be needed


IN the latest development, the US Treasury on Friday slapped sanctions on four Myanmar military and police commanders and two army units for involvement in "ethnic cleansing" and other human rights abuses against the country's Rohingya minority. In response to Myanmar's crackdown on the Rohingyas, the sanctions are so far ...

Sports »

Bolt arrives in Australia on football quest


Usain Bolt says he's deadly serious about becoming a professional footballer and plans to show the world what he's capable of after arriving in Australia Saturday for a trial stint with an A-League club.The superstar athlete has been given the chance to prove his worth by the Central Coast Mariners, ...

Entertainment »

Sonali Bendre`s son posts an emotional message


Family and close friends of Bollywood actress Sonali Bendre have come out as the biggest support in her journey of fighting cancer. The actress who has been diagnosed with high-grade cancer is undergoing her treatment in New York. Being a true fighter, Sonali has not shied away from sharing her ...

Entertainment »

Poet Shamsur Rahman's 12th death anniversary observed


Entertainment Desk : The 12th death anniversary of Shamsur Rahman, one of the major poets in modern Bengali literature, was observed on Friday in a befitting manner.Marking the anniversary, different socio-cultural organisations placed wreaths at the grave of the poet at Banani graveyard and arranged Doa Mahfil.Jatiya Kabita Parishad and Kabi ...

City »

BNP Vice-Chairman Advocate Khondkar Mahbub Hossain speaking at a discussion on 'Next National Election Under Interrogation Without Reform of Election Commission' organised by 'Chetona Bangladesh' at the Jatiya Press Club on Saturday.


International »

Ex-CIA directors issue unprecedented Trump condemnation


AFP, Washington :Former CIA directors and another half dozen of America's most senior spies have issued an unprecedented condemnation of President Donald Trump, after his decision to blacklist their colleague John Brennan.In a statement, ex-CIA bosses appointed by Republican and Democratic presidents - including Robert Gates, George Tenet, Porter Goss, ...

Editorial »

US editors slam Trump for exerting power over free press and strength of democracy


THE rebuke of the US President Donald Trump by over 350 US dailies and other media outlets in their editorials on Thursday has come as a coordinated response to Trump's dirty war against the media and in defense of the press freedom. His sustained attack on free media as 'fake ...

Sports »

Serena learned just before Konta loss that half-sister's killer had been freed


Serena Williams says she discovered just minutes before her match against Johanna Konta last month that the man convicted of killing her half-sister had been released on parole.Briton Konta inflicted the worst defeat of Williams' career by winning 6-1 6-0 in the first round of the Silicon Valley Classic in ...

City »

Convenor of Jatiya Oikya Prokriya Dr Kamal Hossain, among others, at a solidarity meeting organised by prokriya at the Jatiya Press Club on Friday demanding unconditional release of students who were arrested during quota reform movement.


Entertainment »

Radhika Apte gears up for her upcoming project in Mumbai


Radhika Apte who has been juggling multiple projects efficiently is in Mumbai currently promoting her upcoming series on an OTT.  The actress has a lot on her plate as she's currently promoting her upcoming Netflix original Ghoul which is her third project with Netflix followed by the success of her ...

Chittagong »

PSC Chairman expresses dissatisfaction


Sarwaruddin, Chattogram Bureau :Chairman of the Parliamentary Standing Committee (PSC) on Ministry of Railway ABM Fazle Karim Chowdhury MP expressed dissatisfaction over the irregularities, corruptions and mismanagement in Railway East Zone . The dissatisfaction over the activities in East Zone office was expressed on Thursday while exchanging views with the ...

 
Items that you save may be read at any time on your computer, iPad, iPhone or Android devices.
 
Are you new to our website? Do you have already an account at our website?
Create An Account Log in here
Email this news to a friend or like someone
Email:
Write a comment to this news