Freedom or autocracy?

So much for democracy:

A new poll of 20 nations around the world finds that none of the national leaders on the world stage inspire wide confidence. While US President George W. Bush is one of the least trusted leaders, no other leader – including China’s Hu Jintao and Russia’s Vladimir Putin – has gained a broad international base of support.

Only UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon received largely positive ratings in a worldwide poll that asked respondents whether they trusted international leaders “to do the right thing regarding world affairs.”

This is a welcome anecdote to those who believe that Western-style democracy is, by definition, the way to improve society. Dissatisfaction is rife throughout the world, especially in countries that are ruled by US-backed despots.

Text and images ©2024 Antony Loewenstein. All rights reserved.

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