James Madison, one of the founding fathers of the United States, feared mob rule in the 1780s. Nearly 240 years later, his nightmare appears to have become a reality.
Collective action to deny reality
Donald Trump, then in office, systematically incited crowds on American streets, but he actually voted out of office as the US president. He claimed his re-election was stolen.
Trump claims that to this day – as do his supporters. Both continue to this day in a collective act of denying reality. These events shook the symbol of the United States as a bastion of democracy.
Martin Bialecki, editor-in-chief of “Internationale Politik”, is also concerned with the international impact of the events of January 6, 2021. In an interview with Deutschlandfunk Kultur, the actors were interested in preserving America’s exceptional standing in the world. In doing so, they may have achieved the opposite. Because now other countries are rightly asking: “How do you want to be an example to the world in terms of human rights, democracy, etc.?”
Videos of the violent intrusion of a group of Trump supporters into the US Capitol remind us of the storming of the Winter Palace in Saint Petersburg in October 1917—with one big difference: the Republican street mob wanted to keep his “czar,” Donald Trump in office.
So we Germans and Europeans have to get used to a different America.
Republicans are on their way to the ‘Mafia Party’
A country in which the Republican Party, which was once the epitome of the American establishment, is transforming itself into the political equivalent of the Mafia Party.
To be sure, the mob in the United States today is not always right-wing. In the summer of 2020, left-wing crowds made headlines around the world. This turned legitimate protests against police brutality in various American cities into a violent event.
But there is a fundamental difference in how Democrats and Republicans react to the riots. The Democratic Party has condemned the excesses of the extreme left. Meanwhile, Republicans are constantly using mobs for their own purposes.
In their willingness not only to protect the putschists but also to celebrate them, the republicans are now fatally reminded of the principles of Leninist power from the dark days of the Soviet Union.
The United States is threatening to drift away
What follows from this? In the United States, the system of separation of powers established by James Madison and other Constitutional Fathers is in danger of closing off its hinges.
Trump — whether in the form of orange-haired Siegfried or a Trump imitator under Republican governors like Ron DeSantis of Florida — can do just that. In Washington, there are already rumors that Trump fighters want to bring Joe Biden, Nancy Pelosi and other Democrats to court after Trump’s re-election in 2024.
Political self-destruction within them leads to fears that the United States will drift away as a responsible international power. The fact that the West’s long-standing supremacy is now collapsing under their leadership is of particular benefit to Russia and China.
How sovereign is Europe?
All this underscores how dangerous the largely empty whisper about Europe’s “strategic sovereignty” is. Other than rhetoric, there is still little to be reported. See, for example, the German armed forces with about 184,000 soldiers (including those performing voluntary military service), including chronic underinvestment and systematic inefficiencies in material procurement.
Meanwhile, the Russians have just deployed 100,000 of their soldiers to the border with Ukraine alone.
In light of the empty content of our understanding of sovereignty, which has been repeatedly assumed in the Sunday Discourses, this presents a real risk factor for us Europeans.
“Award-winning music trailblazer. Gamer. Lifelong alcohol enthusiast. Thinker. Passionate analyst.”