Democracy

A demonstrator holds a placard reading 'Stop 5G', during a protest against the 5G (fifth generation) mobile communications network in Bern on May 10, 2019.

The Imagined Threats of 5G Conspiracy Theorists Are Causing Real-World Harm

Attacks on cell phone towers are merely the latest evidence that virtual disinformation is leading to actual violence.

Media at Minneapolis Protest

Attacks on the Press Track a Democratic Backslide

As press freedom declines globally, the United States must reckon with its own diminishment.

People wait in line to vote on June 9, 2020 in Atlanta, Georgia.

To Save Its Democracy, the United States Needs a Dose of Its Own Medicine

Americans have long worked abroad to promote democratic practices and institutions. Now, more than ever, those lessons must be applied at home.

Protesters wearing face masks kneel in Dakar, Senegal on June 9, during a rally in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement, and against racism and police brutality

The World Is Watching America’s Reaction to the George Floyd Protests

Pro-democracy activists in authoritarian countries always pointed to the United States as a model. After police attacks on protesters, it has become increasingly hard to do so.

A young Palestinian walks along Israel's controversial wall in the occupied West Bank Palestinian village of Abu Dis on Jan. 29.

Stop Calling Israel a Jewish Democracy

The looming annexation of the West Bank will create a one-state reality, forcing American elites to choose between a commitment to the country’s Jewishness and democratic values.

Beijing magistrates wearing court uniforms join workers demonstrating in support of student hunger-strikers gathered at Tiananmen Square, in Beijing on May 18, 1989.

Xi Jinping’s Tiananmen Family Lessons

The Chinese leader learned one key thing from his father: The party comes first.

U.S. President Donald Trump leaves the White House to go to St. John's Church in Washington on June 1.

A Moment of National Shame and Peril—and Hope

We may be witnessing the beginning of the end of American democracy, but there is still a way to stop the descent.

An Israeli protester lifts a placard during a rally in Tel Aviv on April 25, to protest what the demonstrators consider threats to Israeli democracy.

What Democracy Will Fall Next?

Hungary was the first democratic victim of the coronavirus. It may not be the last.

City workers spray a neighborhood with disinfectant in Jakarta on April 1.

Indonesians Fear Democracy Is the Next Pandemic Victim

A comprehensive new bill claims to be about business challenges but dangerously strengthens executive power.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg speaks about data leaks and Russian disinformation during a U.S. Senate hearing in Washington, D.C., on April 10, 2018.

Here We Go Again: Russia Gears Up to Interfere in 2020 Election With Coronavirus Disinformation

A campaign linked to Russia aims to manipulate this year’s elections in the United States and Europe. Trump needs to let the intelligence professionals do their work.

A woman watches a live broadcast of Russian President Vladimir Putin's address to the nation over the coronavirus outbreak.

Authoritarians Are Exploiting the Coronavirus. Democracies Must Not Follow Suit.

Democracies are far more effective at combating national crises, but that hasn’t stopped despots across the world from trying to tighten their grip.

A banner with a defaced picture of Mustafa al-Kadhimi, Iraq's former intelligence chief and new prime minister-designate, is seen behind an anti-government demonstrator in Baghdad’s Tahrir Square on April 9.

Nobody Can Help Iraq Anymore

The country has another new prime minister nominee—but no new hopes of success.

The new French self-attested movement document is displayed on a smartphone on April 6—the 21st day of a strict lockdown in France to stop the spread of COVID-19.

Privacy and the Pandemic: Time for a Digital Bill of Rights

Democratic governments need digital tools and personal data to combat the crisis, but too much sharing can be dangerous to individuals. How can they strike the right balance?

U.S. President Donald Trump speaks during the daily briefing of the White House Coronavirus Task Force.

Don’t Let Leaders Use the Coronavirus as an Excuse to Violate Civil Liberties

Today’s emergency measures could become tomorrow’s trampling of free speech.

U.S. President Donald Trump

The United States Is Getting Infected With Dictatorship

The coronavirus pandemic has provided an opening for Donald Trump to attack transparency, voting rights, and accountability.

A 14th-century painting showing the caravan of Niccolò and Maffeo Polo crossing Asia.

The ‘Chinese Virus’ Spread Along the New Silk Road

Western democracies may lose the coronavirus propaganda war, but China certainly won’t win it.

Stock trader Peter Tuchman works on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange.

Our Top Weekend Reads

Market response to the coronavirus, China deflecting blame, and the dawn of post-democratic Europe.

Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban delivers his state of the nation address in Budapest on Feb. 18, 2018.

The Shocking ‘Coronavirus Coup’ in Hungary Was a Wake-Up Call

While the world is shut down, history hasn’t stopped. Authoritarians are seizing the opportunity.

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen welcomes Hungary's Prime Minister Viktor Orban

Coronavirus and the Dawn of Post-Democratic Europe

Hungary has used the pandemic to abandon its last vestiges of democracy—and to dare the EU to do anything about it.

A military patrol walks past the empty Louvre Pyramid in Paris on March 28. The country has introduced fines for people caught violating its nationwide lockdown measures intended to stop the spread of COVID-19.

Authoritarianism in the Time of the Coronavirus

The pandemic offers dictators—and democracies alike—an opportunity for abuse.