He certainly managed to hit a spot with Russia, KSA, Burma and North Korea, though only the first three pretend to be liberal if not quite democratic. Chinese executions, concentration camps, organ harvesting and repression haven't earned them this disgrace as yet - maybe we still need their PPE. The latest repressive security law imposed on the people of Hong Kong literally encourages the book burners - books condemned by the Beijing regime are, even as I write, being seized and destroyed; Hague writes about it in today's 'graph.
It is however Russia and China that are stoking the fires of the Culture War on the internet in an effort to destabilise the West. Whilst naive and credulous children are rioting on the street in London because someone called a trannie a tranny on the interweb, Sergei Magnitsky and Jamal Khashoggi, a lawyer and a journalist, were being murdered by their own state officials.
And it's partularly important to distinguish between people and regimes, between holy Russians and Putin's gangster regime, between China's Beijing autocrats and the people of Hong Kong. These subject peoples simply don't enjoy the democratic freedoms that we take for granted; the rampant voting corruption even in Putin's most recent referendum on his own tenure is accepted with just a shrug of the shoulders.
Whilst I'm encouraged by our finally moving out of the twentieth century and into one in which GRU assassins and CCP executioners, Korean torturers and Saudi head-choppers are not only unacceptable but that such actions have consequences, we cannot be complacent about the threats that such rogue nations pose to our liberal democracy. At least it seems we now accept that China, Russia, KSA and the like are not benign regimes but threats to our way of life. Now we must reform our economies to stop selling them arms and technology and buying from them factory goods and fuel that are killing their own citizens and undermining ours.
The global corporates have been quick enough to respond to inconsequential movements such as BLM. Let's now test them with a commercial and trade policy in line with an ethical foreign policy when human lives and human freedoms rather than hurt feelings are at stake.
|Rogue states are once again burning books|