Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Indian "Hindu Nazis" Join Forces With Western Neo-Nazis to Threaten World Peace

In an op ed titled "Hitler's Hindus: The Rise and Rise of India's Nazi-Loving Nationalists" published by leading Israeli newspaper Haaretz, author Shrenik Rao raises alarm bells about "large and growing community of Indian Hindu Nazis, who are digitally connected to neo-Nazi counterparts across the world".

Rao talks about Nagpur, a town he describes as the "epicenter of Hindu Nationalism", where he found  ‘Hitler’s Den’ pool parlor "that shocked me on a round-India trip 10 years ago was no outlier. Admiration for Nazism – often reframed with a genocidal hatred for Muslims – is rampant in the Hindu nationalist camp, which has never been as mainstream as it is now".

History of Hindu Nationalism:

Hindu nationalists in India have a long history of admiration for the Nazi leader, including his "Final Solution". In his book "We" (1939), Madhav Sadashiv Golwalkar, the leader of the Hindu Nationalist RSS (Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh) wrote, "To keep up the purity of the Race and its culture, Germany shocked the world by her purging the country of the Semitic races -- the Jews. Race pride at its highest has been manifested here. Germany has also shown how well-nigh impossible it is for races and cultures, having differences going to the root, to be assimilated into one united whole, a good lesson for us in Hindusthan to learn and profit by."

Golwalkar, considered the founder of the Hindu Nationalist movement in India, saw Islam and Muslims as enemies. He said: “Ever since that evil day, when Moslems first landed in Hindusthan, right up to the present moment, the Hindu Nation has been gallantly fighting to shake off the despoilers".

There may have been mutual admiration between the upper caste Hindu Nationalists and the Nazis since the 1940s. After all, the Nazis adopted the Swastika, a symbol commonly used by Brahmans in India, because it was understood as an Aryan symbol indicating racial purity and superiority. The Nazis knew that the early Aryans of India were white invaders.

On the surface, it appears that Indians are schizophrenic. It is hard to reconcile the right-wing Hindus' growing admiration for the Nazis with their new-found love of Israel. But there is evidence to suggest that both trends are real. Along with rising sales of the Nazi merchandise, there have also been calls in India to "do Gaza" in Pakistan, and the Indian police discovered a conspiracy by a serving Indian Army officer to set up a radical Hindu government in exile in Israel. Both of these trends seem to be driven mainly by the rising hatred of minorities, particularly Muslims, in India.

Neo-Nazis and Hindu Nazis on Social Media:

The advent and growth of online social media have enabled a large and growing community of Indian Hindu Nazis connected to neo-Nazi counterparts in Europe and America.  This came to light a few years ago when the Norwegian white supremacist terrorist Anders Behring Breivik's manifesto against the "Islamization of Western Europe" was heavily influenced by the kind of anti-Muslim rhetoric which is typical of the Nazi-loving Hindu Nationalists like late Madhav Sadashiv Golwalkar (1906-1973), and his present-day Sangh Parivar followers and sympathizers in the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) who currently rule several Indian states. This Hindutva rhetoric which infected Breivik has been spreading like a virus on the Internet, particularly on many of the well-known Islamophobic hate sites that have sprouted up in Europe and America in recent years. In fact, much of the Breivik manifesto is cut-and-pastes of anti-Muslim blog posts and columns that validated his worldview.

"It is essential that the European and Indian resistance movements learn from each other and cooperate as much as possible. Our goals are more or less identical," Breivick wrote in his manifesto. The Christian Science Monitor has reported that "in the case of India, there is significant overlap between Breivik’s rhetoric and strains of Hindu nationalism – or Hindutva – on the question of coexistence with Muslims. Human rights monitors have long decried such rhetoric in India for creating a milieu for communal violence, and the Norway incidents are prompting calls here to confront the issue."

Indian Textbooks Praise Nazis:

Adulation for for Hitler has found its way into Indian textbooks to influence young impressionable minds. Here's how Rao describes it:

In 2004, when now-Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi was the Chief Minister of Gujarat, school textbooks published by the Gujarat State Board portrayed Hitler as a hero, and glorified fascism.

The tenth-grade social studies textbook had chapters entitled "Hitler, the Supremo," and "Internal Achievements of Nazism." The section on the "Ideology of Nazism" reads: "Hitler lent dignity and prestige to the German government. He adopted the policy of opposition towards the Jewish people and advocated the supremacy of the German race." The tenth-grade social studies textbook, published by the state of Tamil Nadu in 2011 (with multiple revised editions until 2017) includes chapters glorifying Hitler, praising his "inspiring leadership," "achievements" and how the Nazis "glorified the German state" so, "to maintain a German race with Nordic elements, [Hitler] ordered the Jews to be persecuted."

Mein Kampf has also gone mainstream, becoming a "must-read" management strategy book for India’s business school students. Professors teaching strategy lecture about how a short, depressed man in prison made a goal of taking over the world and built a strategy to achieve it.

Modi and Trump:

Prime Minister Narendra Modi of India has built his entire political career on the intense hatred of  Muslims. US President Donald Trump built his successful presidential campaign on Islamophobia and xenophobia. That's what the two men have in common.

Just as white racists form the core of Trump's support base in America, the Modi phenomenon in India has been fueled by Hindu Nationalists whose leaders have praised Adolph Hitler for his hatred of Jews.

M.S. Golwalkar, a Hindu Nationalist who Mr. Modi has described as "worthy of worship" wrote the following about Muslims in his book "We":

 "Ever since that evil day, when Moslems first landed in Hindustan, right up to the present moment, the Hindu Nation has been gallantly fighting on to take on these despoilers. The Race Spirit has been awakening.”

"To keep up the purity of the Race and its culture, Germany shocked the world by her purging the country of the Semitic races -- the Jews. Race pride at its highest has been manifested here. Germany has also shown how well-nigh impossible it is for races and cultures, having differences going to the root, to be assimilated into one united whole, a good lesson for us in Hindusthan to learn and profit by."

Summary:

The simultaneous rise of Neo Nazis in the West and the Hindu Nazis in India represents a very serious and growing threat to world peace. Their combined menace can lead to a devastating third world war with nuclear weapons if these trends are not halted and reversed soon. I hope good sense prevails among the voters in these countries to pull the world back from the brink of human catastrophe.

Related Links:

Haq's Musings

Hindu Nationalists Love Nazis

Lynchistan: India is the Lynching Capital of the World

Modi and Trump

Anders Breivik: Islamophobia in Europe and India

Hindu Nationalism Goes Global

Hindutva: The Legacy of the British Raj

18 comments:

Nizar L. said...

You seemed to have left out the wahabbists/salafists nazis who have killed thousands of muslims, destroyed several countries in the middle east and have targeted Ahmadis, Hazaras and other minorities in Pakistan.

Riaz Haq said...

Nizar: "You seemed to have left out the wahabbists/salafists nazis who have killed thousands of muslims, destroyed several countries in the middle east and have targeted Ahmadis, Hazaras and other minorities in Pakistan."


Nazis have killed tens of millions and have the capacity to destroy the world as we know it with nukes they posses. http://www.businessinsider.com/percentage-of-countries-who-died-during-wwii-2014-5

Nizar L. said...

Oh, I didn't know killings of thousands of muslims, destruction of several muslim countries, destroying the livelihood of millions and making them refugees is different than what the nazis did. Also, nazis did not use nuclear weapons. How do you even attempt to minimize the lives lost either by nuclear or conventional weapons or chemical weapons as used by wahabbists/salafists and Yemenis presently being killed by the "Zioudis" by aerial bombings, blockade of ports and siege of the country causing famine, disease and malnutrition of children?

Riaz Haq said...

Nizar: "Oh, I didn't know killings of thousands of muslims, destruction of several muslim countries, destroying the livelihood of millions and making them refugees is different than what the nazis did. Also, nazis did not use nuclear weapons. How do you even attempt to minimize the lives lost either by nuclear or conventional weapons or chemical weapons as used by wahabbists/salafists and Yemenis presently being killed by the "Zioudis" by aerial bombings, blockade of ports and siege of the country causing famine, disease and malnutrition of children?"

Huge difference: Unlike ISIS terrorists, Nazis (like Modi) and Nazi sympathizers (like Trump) are leaders of nuclear-armed nations with the capacity to completely annihilate all human existence. They pose an existential threat to mankind.

Nizar L. said...

You seemed to have a soft corner for ISIS or their "Zioudi" supporters as you see nothing wrong with the killings and destructions that they done on muslims. Let me remind you that KSA, UAE & the other wahabbist/salafists Gulf dictators have joined with Trump (Nazi sympathizer, your title) with Zionist Israel to shortchange the Palestinians and preparing to strike Iran or other muslim countries who do not kowtow to their demands.

Riaz Haq said...

Nizar: "You seemed to have a soft corner for ISIS or their "Zioudi" supporters..."

Nonsense! I absolutely detest ISIS and similar other groups and regimes. My point is that nuclear armed Nazis are far more dangerous than these groups

Nizar L. said...

They say the same thing about nuclear armed Pakistan, but I will end here as you are entitled to your opinion.

Riaz Haq said...

Nizar: "They say the same thing about nuclear armed Pakistan, but I will end here as you are entitled to your opinion."

“They” are the ones who have actually used nukes against civilians and continue to threaten pre-emotive nuclear strikes in future. “They” have no moral high ground here

Anonymous said...

Nizar,

Two wrongs don't make a right. No one elected ISIS or Wahabis and other fundamentalists groups in any Muslim country. Also, kindly enlighten us when in any Muslim country has events like that happened in India in 1984, 1992 and 2002 ever occurred?

G. Ali

Ravi K said...

Ali Sahib, 1984 and 1992 happened when 'secular' Congress was ruling India.

Anonymous said...

Ravi,

To me as an out sider that is totally irrelevant. Gujrat happened under BJP rule.

G. Ali

Ravi K said...

Well of course it is relevant when the post is about "Hindu Nazi Modi" and the so called threat to the world.

Riaz Haq said...

US military consider white supremacism greater threat than Isis, finds new poll
Military leaders have denounced racism and discrimination within the ranks

Andrew Buncombe New York @AndrewBuncombe Wednesday 25 October 2017 14:03 BST

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/us-politics/us-military-army-white-supremacism-isis-racism-islamist-extremists-poll-soldiers-syria-iraq-a8019376.html

One-in-four serving US military personnel have seen examples of white supremacism within their ranks and consider it more of a threat to national security than Islamist extremists such as Isis they have been battling in Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan, according to a new poll.

The poll, conducted by the Military Times, was carried out after a neo-Nazi-led protest in Charlottesville, Virginia, resulted in clashes with anti-fascist demonstrators and the death of a young woman. A young man from Ohio, said to be an admirer of Hitler, has been charged with her death.

Donald Trump was criticised for his slow, shifting response to the violence, seeking to claim there was blame on “many sides”. Yet senior leaders from all branches of the military spoke out to say that threats or discrimination against minorities, did not fit with the values of national service the military sought to espouse.

Concern about white supremacism was most pronounced among soldiers of colour, the survey found. Almost 42 per cent of non-white troops who responded to the survey said they had personally experienced examples of white nationalism or with supremacism, in the military. For white service members, the figure stood at 18 per cent.

When asked whether white nationalists posed a threat to national security, 30 per cent of respondents labelled it a significant danger, more than many war zones such as Syria (27 per cent), Pakistan (25 per cent), Afghanistan (22 per cent) and Iraq (17 per cent).

The newspaper said five per cent of those polled complained that groups such as Black Lives Matter, whose stated goal is to protest in a non-violent way to draw attention to discrimination and violence towards people of colour, were not included in the poll as a possible threat to national security.

While the poll include unspecified “US protest movements” and “civil disobedience”, respondents’ concerns about those issues fell well short of the perceived threat from white supremacism.

-----------

More than 60 per cent of troops who took the survey said they would support activating the National Guard or reserves to handle civil unrest arising from white nationalist events such as the clashes in Charlottesville in August

Riaz Haq said...

In #India, some fear lawmakers are stoking anti-#Muslim fervor. #Modi #BJP #RSS #Hindutva #Islamophobia

http://abcnews.go.com/International/wireStory/india-fear-lawmakers-stoking-anti-muslim-fervor-51943124

A lawmaker from India's ruling party called the Taj Mahal a blot on Indian culture, saying in October that the famous tourist site had been built by Muslim traitors. In November, another party member offered a bounty for the heads of two people involved in a movie featuring a Muslim sultan. Then, this month, a laborer was hacked to death and set afire while his alleged attacker ranted against Muslims.

The series of incidents this fall has reinforced fears that anti-Muslim sentiment has hardened in India in the three years since a Hindu nationalist party led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi swept to power. Some say it has reached a point where Hindu extremists believe they can get away with murder. Others worry that hard-line Hindu leaders want to rewrite the country's rich Muslim history.

The shift in attitudes is happening in a democracy of 1.3 billion people that is often held up as a model for inclusion in the developing world. When former President Barack Obama visited New Delhi earlier this month, he said Muslims were integrated and consider themselves Indian.

Hindus account for 80 percent of the population, compared to Muslims' 14 percent. While there have long been religious tensions, there is a sense the stakes have risen under Modi's Bharatiya Janata Party. The BJP maintained its hold on Modi's home state of Gujarat in election results tallied Monday, although with a reduced majority.

In a tweet this month, Muslim lawmaker Asaduddin Owaisi questioned whether Modi is a leader for all religions or just Hindus. "Remember that you have taken oath on Constitution," he wrote.

Muslims in India have had to deal with a certain level of discrimination for decades, historian and writer Mukul Kesavan said, noting they often find it difficult to buy or rent homes.

But Kesavan said Modi and his party have given Hindus a sense of permission to lash out against Muslims. He cited cases of mob violence against Muslims who buy or sell cows for slaughter, which is banned in most of the country because Hindus consider cows sacred.

The mobs have gone unpunished in some cases, while the victims or their families have been charged with illegally possessing beef, Kesavan said.

"There have always been two kinds of justice," he said. "But the notion that people now have a license to kill, that is new. This idea of impunity has taken hold so strongly."

The brutality of the laborer's death in the western state of Rajasthan shocked many. TV showed a video of the alleged attacker ranting while the victim lay on the ground behind him. Police have made an arrest.

But in other cases, investigations have dragged on or gone nowhere. Kesavan said police often await advice from the ruling party before acting.

Modi's BJP rejects the notion it is encouraging violence.

At an office in the Constitution Club of India, party spokesman and former lawmaker Bizay Sonkar Shastri said occasional flare-ups between Hindus and Muslims are a natural part of life and began long before his party came to power.

"Our political agenda is only to develop the nation," he said. "We never prefer to do politics on caste, color, religion, or any such sort of things."

He said that in two decades of power in Gujarat, the BJP has built an interconnected system of roads and ensured every village has electricity.

Yet party member Suraj Pal Amu last month offered 100 million rupees ($1.6 million) to anybody who would behead the lead actress and director of "Padmavati," a still-unreleased Bollywood movie that is rumored to depict a relationship between a Hindu queen and a Muslim ruler.

Riaz Haq said...

#Pakistan reaffirms commitment to "full spectrum" #nuclear deterrence, rejects #US charges. #terrorism #India #nukes #missiles @AJENews

http://www.aljazeera.com/news/2017/12/pakistan-reaffirms-commitment-nuclear-deterrence-171222075832470.html

Pakistan's military and civilian leadership has reaffirmed the country's commitment to maintaining "full spectrum" nuclear deterrence and reiterated the robustness of its nuclear safeguards.

Pakistan's National Command Authority (NCA), which oversees the country's nuclear weapons programme, met for the first time in almost two years in Rawalpindi on Thursday.

"While expressing full confidence in Pakistan's capability to address any form of aggression, the NCA reiterated Pakistan's policy of developing and maintaining Full Spectrum Deterrence, in line with the policy of Credible Minimum Deterrence and avoidance of arms race," said a joint statement from the country's military and the prime minister's office.

The meeting was the first held since Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi took over in August this year. Also in attendance were Army Chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Zubair Hayat and other members of the country's top security leadership.

Full spectrum deterrence refers to a Pakistani nuclear policy where the country maintains nuclear weapons systems and warheads on the tactical, operational and strategic levels.

The policy was developed in response to a shift by regional rival India towards a more proactive conventional military stance, often dubbed "Cold Start". Pakistan, in turn, developed tactical nuclear weapons, which are smaller warheads that can be deployed at short range.

The doctrine envisages the use of tactical nuclear weapons by Pakistan as a deterrent against any possible conventional incursion into Pakistani territory by Indian forces.

The Pakistani leadership "noted with concern" a conventional arms build-up by India, its deployment of nuclear weapons capable systems to the Indian Ocean and its development of a Ballistic Missile Shield system.

The NCA also noted Pakistan's development of the Babur-III cruise missile and Ababeel ballistic missile, which is capable of carrying multiple nuclear warheads.

Response to US allegations
The statement on Thursday also made apparent reference to US President Donald Trump's recently announced security strategy, where he called on Pakistan "to continue demonstrating that it is a responsible steward of its nuclear assets".

"The NCA took a detailed review of the Nuclear Security Regime and expressed full confidence in command and control systems and security measures in-place to ensure comprehensive stewardship and security of strategic assets and materials," said the Pakistani statement.

"It re-affirmed that, as a responsible nuclear State, Pakistan would continue to contribute meaningfully towards the global efforts to improve nuclear security and nuclear non-proliferation measures."

Riaz Haq said...

Strategic Insights by #India's Sunil Sharan : #Pakistan, a rising power
https://blogs.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/strategic-insights/pakistan-a-rising-power/ … via @TOIOpinion

Yet, one nation is a rising power, ready to take its rightful place in the comity of nations, while the other is deemed a global pariah, a jelly state if not a failed state. Huh? How did this happen?

The reality is different. The world pays lip service to India for its large middle class and its ability to buy arms on a large scale. India seems to consider this courting as its emergence on the world stage.

Scratch the surface, and you will find something else. The US is denying Indians H1-B visas. The US has delinked the Haqqanis, who they want, from Hafiz Saeed, who they couldn’t care less about, so that they can give dollops of aid to the Pakistanis.

Today the Yanks hector the Pakistanis, but that is empty bluster. The Pakistanis have trumped them; the Yanks’ wails appear like crocodile tears. The Yanks forgot when they invaded Afghanistan and enlisted the Pakistanis’ help by threatening to bomb them into the stone age that the Pakistanis had been there once before.

That time they trumped the Russians, with significant money and arms from the Americans and the Saudis. But the Americans never took to battle in Afghanistan the first time round. Sure they had read that Afghanistan was a graveyard for empires, from the British to the Soviet, but they believed, foolishly, that they themselves would win out.

They struck a Faustian bargain with the Pakistanis, without ever realizing that they were dealing with the devil. In the nineties, the Pakistanis used Afghanistan to hijack Indian planes and launch jihad in Kashmir. Afghanistan had become both strategic depth as well as a launching pad for them. How were they expected to give up this twin treat?

Once the Yanks entered Kabul, the Taliban vanished. Into thin air? Oh no, many of them disappeared into Pakistan. The Yanks forgot about Afghanistan, until first the Iraqis, and then the Taliban, started knocking their teeth out. One by one their Nato brethren fled Afghanistan, until the Yanks realized that they had to flee as well.

Go to Kabul today, and you will find disdain for Pakistan everywhere. But the Pakistanis don’t care. The real people who matter in Afghanistan are the Taliban, and you don’t find many of them in Kabul. The writ of the government of Afghanistan extends over only Kabul, much as the later-day Mughals were derided as the mayors of Delhi.

The Taliban control over sixty percent of the country. The Talibs don’t like the Pakistanis, referring to them often as blacklegs. But the Talibs need Pakistan to capture Kabul, much as the Pakistanis need the Taliban to capture Afghanistan.

The Pakistanis are disdainful of the threats emanating from the Yanks. The Yanks need Pakistani territory to transport supplies to their legionaries in Afghanistan. The Pakistanis blocked their land routes once, and all hell broke loose then. It’s almost impossible to transport goods from the west of Afghanistan.

---

Today Pakistan stands on the cusp of victory in Afghanistan. It spurns the Americans for the Chinese, and lo and behold, the Russians, the very people it had helped kick out of Afghanistan. Politics, or rather realpolitik, sure does make for strange bedfellows.

Pakistan is able to stymie India at every international forum, be it the UN or the nuclear suppliers group. There have even been strong rumours about the Obama administration offering the Pakistanis their own nuclear deal. Trump yells and curses at the Pakistanis, but is the first one to give it gobs of military aid.

Pakistan sure doesn’t seem like a loser. It appears to have come out of Afghanistan smelling of roses. It can blackmail America to its heart’s content, and what is more, happily get away with it. Does it seem like a failed state? A terrorist state? A terrorized state? At least not now. For now it seems that Pakistan’s star, that star in their beloved crescent, is rising. And rising.

Riaz Haq said...

#Pakistan has already said "No More" to #America. #Trump’s ‘no more’ is not of any importance: Foreign Minister Khawaja Asif. #Afghanistan

https://www.geo.tv/latest/174836-trumps-no-more-is-not-of-any-importance-asif

Foreign Minister Khawaja Asif, in response to a tweet by US President Donald Trump, said that Pakistan has already refused to ‘do more’ for the United States.

“We have already told the US that we will not do more, so Trump’s ‘no more’ does not hold any importance,” Asif said in an exclusive interview with Geo News.

“Pakistan is ready to publicly provide every detail of the US aid that it has received,” Asif said in a strongly worded statement, in response to Trump’s tweet that accused Pakistan of providing safe havens to terrorists that the US is hunting in Afghanistan.


Donald J. Trump

@realDonaldTrump
The United States has foolishly given Pakistan more than 33 billion dollars in aid over the last 15 years, and they have given us nothing but lies & deceit, thinking of our leaders as fools. They give safe haven to the terrorists we hunt in Afghanistan, with little help. No more!

4:12 AM - Jan 1, 2018
17,501 17,501 Replies 32,980 32,980 Retweets 87,780 87,780 likes
Twitter Ads info and privacy
“Trump is disappointed at the US defeat in Afghanistan and that is the only reason he is flinging accusations at Pakistan,” the foreign minister said.

“The US should try to negotiate with Taliban in Afghanistan instead of using military force,” he added.

Riaz Haq said...

Trump’s Threat to Democracy
Nicholas Kristof
Nicholas Kristof JAN. 10, 2018

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/01/10/opinion/trumps-how-democracies-die.html

Two political scientists specializing in how democracies decay and die have compiled four warning signs to determine if a political leader is a dangerous authoritarian:

1. The leader shows only a weak commitment to democratic rules. 2. He or she denies the legitimacy of opponents. 3. He or she tolerates violence. 4. He or she shows some willingness to curb civil liberties or the media.

“A politician who meets even one of these criteria is cause for concern,” Steven Levitsky and Daniel Ziblatt, both professors at Harvard, write in their important new book, “How Democracies Die,” which will be released next week.

“With the exception of Richard Nixon, no major-party presidential candidate met even one of these four criteria over the last century,” they say, which sounds reassuring. Unfortunately, they have one update: “Donald Trump met them all.”

We tend to assume that the threat to democracies comes from coups or violent revolutions, but the authors say that in modern times, democracies are more likely to wither at the hands of insiders who gain power initially through elections. That’s what happened, to one degree or another, in Russia, the Philippines, Turkey, Venezuela, Ecuador, Hungary, Nicaragua, Sri Lanka, Ukraine, Poland and Peru.

Venezuela was a relatively prosperous democracy, for example, when the populist demagogue Hugo Chávez tapped the frustrations of ordinary citizens to be elected president in 1998.

A survey that year found that the Venezuelan public overwhelmingly believed that “democracy is always the best form of government,” with only one-quarter saying that authoritarianism is sometimes preferable. Yet against their will, Venezuelans slid into autocracy.

“This is how democracies now die,” Levitsky and Ziblatt write. “Democratic backsliding today begins at the ballot box.”

Likewise, the authors say, no more than 2 percent of Germans or Italians joined the Nazi or Fascist Parties before they gained power, and early on there doesn’t seem to have been clear majority support for authoritarianism in either Germany or Italy. But both Hitler and Mussolini were shrewd demagogues who benefited from the blindness of political insiders who accommodated them.

Let me say right here that I don’t for a moment think the United States will follow the path of Venezuela, Germany or Italy. Yes, I do see in Trump these authoritarian tendencies — plus a troubling fondness for other authoritarians, like Vladimir Putin in Russia and Rodrigo Duterte in the Philippines — but I’m confident our institutions are stronger than Trump.

It’s true that he has tried to undermine institutions and referees of our political system: judges, the Justice Department, law enforcement agencies like the F.B.I., the intelligence community, the news media, the opposition party and Congress. But to his great frustration, American institutions have mostly passed the stress test with flying colors.

“President Trump followed the electoral authoritarian script during his first year,” Levitsky and Ziblatt conclude. “He made efforts to capture the referees, sideline the key players who might halt him, and tilt the playing field. But the president has talked more than he has acted, and his most notorious threats have not been realized. … Little actual backsliding occurred in 2017.”