Vacuum for Chaos

Democratic Security Monthly Foresight: January 2021

7 January 2021

January brings more cases of hateful and divisive messages from political leaders leading to physical violence. Political turmoil in the US after Donald Trump incited a mob which stormed Capitol Hill. In Hungary, a leading think tank expert received death threats to his family after Viktor Orbán marked his criticism of the government as “evil”.

 

  • Expect more turbulence about divisive messages before the end of this month until Joe Biden becomes the next president with a new political narrative from the White House. 
  • Due to the early-stage rollout of vaccination against COVID-19, we expect an increased level of conspiracy theories about it. Watch for efforts by Russia and China to advertise their mode of response and unsafe products such as Sputnik V to vulnerable countries because of geopolitical reasons rather than public health.

 

Attacks on Transatlantic institutions and power transition in Berlin

Many watched with unease the mayhem unfold in Washington DC after Donald Trump incited his followers to “take back control of the government”. Illiberal and autocratic forces in Central Europe are sure to use the event to their advantage. Watch for messages showcasing democratic decline abused by systemic rivals of the West. Also, anticipate new pressures on social media operators to moderate content online.

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