So now the challenge is in plain view: we face the globalisation of anti-globalisation, a popular front of populists, an International of nationalists. “Today the United States, tomorrow – France,” tweets Jean-Marie Le Pen. It will be a long, hard struggle to defeat them, at home and abroad, and we may now have to look elsewhere for the “leader of the free world”. But defeat them we will.In Vladimir Putin’s Russia we have something very close to fascism. Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s Turkey is rapidly crossing the line between illiberal democracy and fascism, while Viktor Orbán’s Hungary is already an illiberal democracy. In Poland, France, the Netherlands, Britain and now the US, we have to defend the line between liberal and illiberal democracy.In Britain that means standing up for the independence of the judiciary, the sovereignty of parliament and the impartial strength of the BBC. In the US we shall now witness the biggest test of one of the strongest, oldest systems of liberal democratic checks and balances. Even though Republicans dominate Congress and, fatefully, Donald Trump will be able to make key political appointments to the supreme court, that does not mean the new president will have it all his own way.
Populists are out to divide us. They must be stopped