Friday, 8 May 2020

Covid-19 diary: VE day

Today we celebrate the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Europe from a brutal fascist dictatorship, and acknowledge the sacrifices our parents and grandparents made during the time.

The rise of the Nazis is an important lesson of history.  It didn’t happen overnight; it was a gradual process.  Not everyone subscribed to the ideology, but as its grip strengthened, it became increasingly difficult, and dangerous, to resist.

The lesson is that we should watch out for similar processes happening today, and nip them in the bud.  There are currently distressing parallels of the rise of nationalism and fascism around the world, from nationalistic groups arising in European and other countries, including the nationalistic underpinnings of Brexit, to the nibbling away of the rule of law, of checks and balances, in other countries.

Crises can tend to amplify nationalism, as people pull together locally, but apart globally.  And necessary measures put in place during crises can be difficult to remove after the crisis has passed (is it really over? better be safe than sorry!)

VE day reminds us of the utter horrors of fascism.

Don’t let Covid-19 help them return through the back door.

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