Opinion: Tyranny

Jonathan Freedland, in Saturday’s Guardian was right to say the VE commemorations with the present pandemic, are possibly more applicable to September 1939, the beginning of World War II, than 3 May, ’45.

It is beyond tragic how so many gave their lives and fought against tyranny in those dark times because, 75 years on and tyranny is back.

However, tyranny is not back in the form of one deranged leader, it is personified by many leaders of a populist persuasion.

Yes, make no mistake – the dark times have returned and in multiple forms!

Despite the stand-off of the Cold War between mainly the US and Soviet Union in the years that followed the second world war, many nations found their independence from the British empire.  In the UK itself the birth of our treasured NHS was born, as a Labour government built affordable homes for poor or working-class people.

Yet, tyranny has tiptoed its way back to reign.

With the onslaught of the 80s, Thatcher’s government wiped out an entire industry of mining, imposed a heavy hand of anti-union laws, introduced a new brand of individualism along with Ronald Reagan where, greed and material status were all the rage.  Fortunately, she was ousted by her own party with the imposing of the poll tax and an increasing unilateral approach.  In those days, a budding tyrant could still be halted in the name of saving the face of a nation.

With the dawn of the new millennium, came a more aggressive sabotaging of democracy in the US, the tyranny of the Iraq War, the lies and fallout which were spawned into the next decades and so on.

Today though, there is a new tyranny more untameable and seemingly unstoppable than ever.

While media moguls and behind-closed-door think tanks, help to build on extreme projects like Brexit, as external or unseen foreign hands reach across from afar to manoeuvre their desired outcomes of democratic elections.  What a lowered bar of expectations will keep allowing, as  bewildered citizens sit with smart devices, glued to social media, aghast as if somehow entertained by the shock value and control freakery of desperate leaders intoxicated with an agenda so pervasive, it becomes a disease.

Yet despite the continued outrages and baffling weirdness that has become ‘the new norm’ people allow themselves to become brainwashed by the latest generation of demagogues.  So, when the rare qualities of rationale or principled convictions shine through the fog of deceit and deception – they are quickly stifled, silenced and banished from holding the demagogues and ideologists to account.

From those agendas or ideologies, comes fear, another tool of agents of tyranny, despite the age of intelligence or more knowing societies who find it easier to try adopting a higher level of consciousness in a preapocalyptic world of western privilege or displaced, beleaguered victims of war and famine.

Tyranny is even in the air – 5G stealth radiation and microwave warfare, for the need for faster, faster information, communication, surveillance or instant gratification.

Tyranny is dying democracy, as with every election, especially in countries where populism is on the rise.

And, for those who are brave enough to blow the whistle, trumpet the truth or challenge the narrative, they are hunted down, jailed, stifled or even killed.

Again, as Freedland has pointed out, Donald Trump has declared his own hostilities of alliances and international cooperation’s which took years to craft with treaties and comradery between nations following the second World War.

Tyranny is back in the form of xenophobia, hatred for those of colour, from far flung foreign lands, as war on the poor and disenfranchised is more blatant than ever, with the thin veil of disguised disdain by the ruling class stripped away.  Words such as misogyny have now taken on a more prominent life of their own, while nationalism has replaced globalisation and interconnectedness, as the European Union itself is seemingly under threat from within and outside.

After 75 years, the entire world is at war, but fighting a bi product plausibly of human making.

How could governments and industry not think with decades of increased microwaves in the air, pollutants, additives in our food, poisons and pesticides in our soil and overall environmental degradation would not take more and more lives?

People and planet before profit has become a lucid yet feeble defence, barely acknowledged by the top 1 percent of the wealthiest and most powerful.

As birth defects or social maladies skyrocket, war is well underway for human survival against the ultimate tyranny that has manifested in Covid-19.

Sitting outside on VE day, the warm sun shone, and the birds sang their usual chorus of contentment, but it was strangely quiet.  With citizens of Europe sitting home on quarantine, it wasn’t because of the threat of bombs raining down, as in World War II, but an unseen enemy.

The queen’s speech might have been consoling in tone, but was it just a bittersweet, carefully choreographed remnant of another time confronting a new and scared generation?

With modern fanaticism and frenzied busyness temporarily channelled inward while we’re all imprisoned in our homes, the world as we have known it for the last several generations since the war, is being engineered by tyranny in all it’s dark and menacing forms. With speculation of how Covid-19 was started, reaction to its spreading like wildfire across the world and rumours circulating about societies being controlled, a perplexed world hangs in the balance.

Whether humans can withstand a world blitz, with the resilience to take our power back, recover the natural environment, embrace opportunity for change – either recapturing humanity or self-destructing, only time and events will tell.


© 2020