The rise of the far right in France, on the one hand, and the turmoil in domestic politics in Pakistan, on the other, are clear examples of the fact that the world is heading towards a new direction.
There is one thought that grew stronger and stronger over the course of the coronavirus pandemic: liberal democratic regimes cannot be a cure-all. However, we cannot argue that the centralistic nature of autocratic regimes generates any solution either. After all, since this is a matter of balance between resources and production, no matter which regime, liberal or conservative, it should approach the matter more attentively.
Leaders such as Idi Amin, Saddam Hussein, Muammar Gaddafi managed to lead the people longer than expected, but they are in fact remembered for the way they go. Franco in Spain and Salazar in Portugal similarly went down in history as dictators of recent times in Europe, but like them, their regimes too were not permanent. People in North Korea and Iran are being isolated from the outside world, their conservative governments are trying to make people believe that “This is a better way of life”. I do not know how it could be possible to protect the regime forever through isolation in modern times.
The rise of the far right in Europe is not a surprise. Pre-pandemic surveys showed that young people’s opinions were shifting to the extreme right, even the left-wing parties were switching to far-right discourses. The factor of nationalism has its effect on citizens especially in times of economic challenges. After all, there is a sense of patriotism and faith in every average citizen. You would not find a single person among them who does not feel sorry for their country and does not complain about the degeneration of their values. Therefore, it is quite natural that extreme right is getting stronger every day under these circumstances.
“We Need to Be Proactive…”
And the most worrisome part about this process is that, immediately after they come to power, ultra-nationalist leaders tend to start making suggestions about how citizens should live their lives. They may even begin to enact new laws governing the likes or the dislikes of those who voted for them. As their time in office extends, these leaders may tend to put aside consulting the public for radical changes. After a while, “I got the majority vote, I can decide what’s the best for them” kind of thinking becomes the new normal.
Therefore, the developments in both Pakistan in the east and France in the west should be closely monitored. The developments in these countries will set a precedent for similar countries. The direction in which the hostility between India and Pakistan and France’s attitude towards the Ukraine-Russia war will evolve are of great interest to Turkey. So, Turkey may be about to enter a brand-new period in which the Government will hopefully try to eliminate negative occurrences by acting proactively rather than taking a position according to the course of events.