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Articles on Authoritarianism

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Police arrest a protester at a Moscow rally in support of Russian dissident Alexei Navalny, who fell ill while in prison and is now hospitalized. Alexander Demianchuk\TASS via Getty Images

For Vladimir Putin and other autocrats, ruthlessly repressing the opposition is often a winning way to stay in power

There's not much the world can do to stop authoritarian rulers from persecuting their political opponents, as shown by the standoff over Russian dissident Alexei Navalny, who is ill and imprisoned.
Among the many issues that Joe Biden has to deal with, what place does he reserve for the alliance of democracies project that he mentioned during his presidential campaign? Chip Somodevilla/AFP

Europe must push Joe Biden’s ‘alliance of democracies’

The new US administration has talked about setting up an alliance of democracies. For the time being, the project seems vague. Yet such an alliance is necessary.
At the Rose Monday carnival in Düsseldorf, Germany, on February 15, Vladimir Putin was portrayed in an unfortunate posture in front of Alexei Navalny. Ina Fassbender/AFP

Debate: Is the wind changing for Vladimir Putin?

Can the arrival of a new administration in Washington and the demonstrations in Moscow demanding the release of Alexei Navalny destabilize the strongman of Moscow?
A Donald Trump supporter wears a gas mask and holds a bust of him after he and hundreds of others stormed the Capitol building on Jan. 6, 2021. Roberto Schmidt/AFP via Getty Images

What is fascism?

Given the current, often erroneous, use of the term 'fascist' to describe political movements and leaders, it's important to determine what fascism is and is not.
White supremacists clash with police in Charlottesville in 2017. Evan Nesterak/Wikipedia

Debate: A geopolitical reading of fear

Despite moments of hope, worries about the present and fears that the future may be even worse have been rising for decades. What can geopolitics teach us about the global impact of fear?
Trump yells while visiting a portion of the border wall in Alamo, Tex. on Jan. 12, 2021. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

Trump impeached a second time – but Trumpism will live on

Donald Trump has become the first U.S. president to be impeached twice. But the ignorance and lawlessness of Trumpism will have a dangerous afterlife even after Trump has left Washington.
U.S. President Donald Trump greets Russian President Vladimir Putin during their bilateral meeting in Osaka, Japan, June, 28, 2019. Mikhail Svetlov/Getty Images

President Trump’s use of the authoritarian playbook will have lasting consequences

Throughout his presidency, Donald Trump has exposed the fragility of democratic institutions, mirroring a global trend in authoritarianism, and that will have a lasting effect on the United States.
U.S. President Donald Trump waves to supporters as he departs after playing golf at the Trump National Golf Club in Sterling Va., on Nov. 8, 2020. Trump is refusing to concede the election, a common tactic of authoritarians. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

Trump lost, but racism is alive and infused in U.S. history

Trump is reminiscent of strongmen like Hungary's Viktor Orbán and Turkey's Recep Tayyip Erdogan. A good portion of the electorate like what he's selling anyway. That's a bitter pill for the U.S.
U.S. President Donald Trump speaks at a campaign rally at Carson City Airport on Oct. 18, 2020, in Carson City, Nev. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

Can America survive the re-election of Donald Trump?

Americans can survive a second Trump term if they resurrect a language of critique and possibility that draws from history and shields the U.S. from authoritarianism.

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