Articles by: "Slawomir Sierakowski"
Belarus’s moment of truth

The protests that have roiled Belarus in the week since its stolen presidential election are evolving. Mass demonstrations gave way to more dispersed mobilisations on the model pioneered in Hong Kong. Because such ‘liquid’ protests …

The struggle for Belarus

Belarusian opposition leaders knew beforehand that they would be protesting the falsified result of the presidential election this past weekend, and had already adopted three governing principles. Their demonstrations must be absolutely peaceful, they must …

Europe bails out its populists

As expected, the European Parliament has torn into the European Council’s recently agreed budget and pandemic-response package. The €1.8 trillion price tag and proposed cuts to development funding, including science and research, have predictably met …

Pandemic plays into populists’ hands

Threats to national security invariably limit domestic political disputes. Now that governments have assumed a leading role in fighting the Covid-19 pandemic, the political opposition in countries under populist rule is quickly being marginalised. In …

Has Macron gone too far?

You can be talented, handsome, rhetorically skilled and politically brave, and yet suffer for it. In the long run, prudence and restraint are crucial ingredients of successful leadership, and it is precisely those two qualities …

The mainstreaming of corruption

As we’ve seen in recent years, domination by a populist party can lead to the deep polarisation of an electorate. But it also erodes the ethical fabric of political life. Unable to defeat populists through …

The age of cynical voters

We all know that politicians are cunning and cynical, but could the same now be said for the electorate? Many of those who voted for US President Donald Trump did so knowing that he is …

Teflon populism

Populist rule is invariably associated with corruption, nepotism and incompetence. Why, then, do populists appear immune to scandal? Revelations that would have shocked electorates just a few years ago leave nary a mark on populist …

Can Donald Tusk go home again?

Donald Tusk’s term as president of the European Council will end on 30 November, which is perfect timing for the Polish opposition. After the parliamentary election in late October, Poland will hold its presidential election …

The Rorschach test of Notre Dame

Following the death of Pope John Paul II in 2005, a group of young Polish activists and artists donned T-shirts that read: ‘I did not cry for the Pope’. At a time of seemingly obligatory …

How to beat a populist

There have never been more populist governments in place than today. Until now, populists haven’t been voted out of power in any Western country. Even though the president of Slovakia has only symbolic power, anti-corruption …