The administration has made bolstering democracy abroad a key foreign policy priority. President Biden has declared that the United States must ensure democracy prevails in this moment of resurgent authoritarianism fostered by China and Russia. The two countries with disinformation and interference campaigns undermine democracy all around the world. The United States needs to demonstrate the benefits of democracy, but also dedicate revitalized efforts to helping partner countries inoculate those political systems against the advance of illiberalism. This should involve tackling such threats to democracy from China and Russia.
Beijing and Moscow present distinct challenges and use different tactics to pursue their goals. But both contest democracy as the best model for governance and undermine its practice. China exploits and exacerbates governance holes in vulnerable countries, using corruption and a lack of transparency to conduct deals that undermine political trust. Russia has similar strategic corruption tactics to back its allies within countries and undermine actors with ties to the United States and Europe.
The United States needs to demonstrate the benefits of democracy, but also dedicate revitalized efforts to helping partner countries inoculate those political systems against the advance of illiberalism.
Both China and Russia often subvert this political process for democracy with their interference in elections and providing direct financial support to friendly autocrats. Russia interferes in elections across Europe while it exploits societal fissures in countries with democracy, and China injects its dark funding into political campaigns and does timely investments to bolster the fortunes of numerous autocratic regimes all over.
Read the full article from The Hill.
More from CNAS
PodcastSamuel Bendett on AI Development in Russia
What is happening in Russia right now with regards to development of artificial intelligence? In today’s bingecast, Samuel Bendett and Robert J. Marks discuss Russian military...
By Samuel Bendett
CommentaryHow Personalist Politics is Changing Democracies
This rapid increase is alarming: Personalist rule brings with it a host of negative outcomes compared to other types of authoritarian systems....
By Andrea Kendall-Taylor, Carisa Nietsche, Erica Frantz & Joseph Wright
CommentaryThe United States Can’t Afford the Brutal Price of Chinese Solar Panels
Buying Chinese solar panels to reduce emissions is like using gas to put out a fire....
By Henry Wu
CommentaryIsrael’s growing ties to China are testing its relationship with the U.S.
As a sovereign, high-tech, democratic powerhouse, Israel has a fundamental stake in the contest between China and the free world....
By David Feith