For most people across the world COVID-19 has been the most important challenge in the past 20 months. Our focus on this pandemic has been a distraction and tyrants worldwide have taken advantage to entrench their despotism. This perspective is published in Progressive Farmer. Here is an excerpt:
Here’s some of what happened while the world was distracted by the coronavirus: Hungary banned the public depiction of homosexuality. China shut Hong Kong’s last pro-democracy newspaper. Brazil’s government extolled dictatorship. And Belarus hijacked a passenger plane to arrest a journalist.
COVID-19 has absorbed the world’s energies and isolated countries from one another, which may have accelerated the creep of authoritarianism and extremism across the globe, some researchers and activists believe.
“COVID is a dictator’s dream opportunity,” said Theary Seng, a Cambodian-American human rights lawyer who has been indicted on charges including treason in the ostensibly democratic southeast Asian nation, where Prime Minister Hun Sen has been in power for more than three decades.
Read the full article here.