While international attention on anything other than COVID-19 is in short supply right now, it remains crucial to speak out against the Putins, Kaczyńskis,and Orbáns of the world, argues Jan-Werner Mueller, Professor of Politics at Princeton University, and the author, most recently, of Furcht und Freiheit (Fear and Freedom).
Their citizens, alas, will learn soon enough how their kleptocracies have shortchanged health care. Under the circumstances, it’s all the more important that an institution like the European Commission closely monitor emergency measures in EU states, he writes for Project Syndicate.
How COVID-19 might influence trends in transnational kleptocracy and impact independent media is the focus of an interview conducted by Melissa Aten of the NED’s International Forum with Drew Sullivan, the editor and co-founder of the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (OCCRP):
When the leaders fail and large numbers of people die because governments are corrupt and incompetent, they’re going to start finding scapegoats and use the pandemic as an excuse to attack opposition parties and minority groups. That’s when it could get quite dangerous. I think many countries are going to find that they mishandle this and they’re not going to want to be accountable for their mishandling it. RTWT