For the first time since the end of the Cold War, the world is steadily becoming less democratic. From the regressive politics taking root in the Visegrad countries, to the transmogrification of the Arab Spring into a totalitarian autumn, to the entrenchment of demagoguery from the Philippines to Russia, liberal democracy is in retreat. The ultimate triumph of such regimes, as predicted by Francis Fukuyama in ‘The End of History’, seems an ever more distant dream.
The Henry Jackson Society is pleased to invite you to an event with Dr Brian Klaas, Fellow, London School of Economics and author, The Despot’s Accomplice: How the West is Aiding and Abetting the Decline of Democracy. Dr Klaas will argue that although the true culprits behind the global decline in democracy are dictators and counterfeit democrats, the West is often complicit in contributing to this phenomenon. In pursuit of short-term economic and political objectives, governments in Washington, London and Brussels ultimately make the world less prosperous and stable. This, Dr Klaas will conclude, is in nobody’s interest, least of all Western democracies.
Brian Klaas is a fellow in Comparative Politics at the London School of Economics, where he focuses on democratisation and political violence. He has advised several national governments and major international NGOs, including International Crisis Group, the Carter Center, and One Earth Future. Klaas received his doctorate from the University of Oxford. The Despot’s Accomplice draws on interviews on the frontlines of the global struggle for democracy, from a poetry-reading, politician-kidnapping general in Madagascar, and Islamist torture victims in Tunisia, to Belarusian activists tailed by the KGB, and tea-sipping members of the Thai junta. Cumulatively, their stories weave together the tale of a broken system at the root of democracy’s global retreat.
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