Countries where U.S. promoted democracy now mock it as a ‘banana republic’ – Darragh Roch

Banana Republic Flag

Darragh RochDonald Trump’s unproven claims of voter fraud in the presidential election have prompted people in many countries to mock the U.S. as a banana republic – Darragh Roch 

President Donald Trump’s unproven claims of voter fraud in the presidential election have prompted people in many countries to mock the U.S. as counting ballots continues.

In particular, nations where the U.S. has pushed democracy or offered election advice have weighed in, while many have pointed to the history of American involvement in regime change abroad. Governments that have been criticized in the past took the opportunity to chide the U.S.

“Who’s the banana republic now?” asked Colombia’s Publimetro daily newspaper on its front page, according to the Associated Press. The headline was accompanied by a photo of a man wearing a mask printed with a U.S. flag.

President Nicolás Maduro of Venezuela commented on the length of time it’s taking to count the votes.

Trump has been critical of the Venezuelan strongman and accused him of subverting democracy. In a televised speech on Wednesday, Maduro said “the electoral results are given on the very night of the elections in an exact manner” in his country.

“Yesterday, the electoral campaign in Venezuela began. It is a demonstration of how in a civilized manner, in peace, we have a proven, transparent electoral system,” Maduro said, referring to parliamentary elections on December 6.

Maduro also broke into song, singing the theme tune to the Miss Venezuela beauty pageant, which contains the line: “On a night as beautiful as this, either of them could win.”

“What a spectacle!” said Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. “One says this is the most fraudulent election in US history. Who says that? The president who is currently in office.”

A Russian foreign ministry spokeswoman pointed to what she called the “obvious shortcomings of the American electoral system.” She said it was “archaic,” according to The Guardian.

Many Africans shared jokes about the situation in the U.S. The continent has long been subject to U.S. election advice and media coverage of disputed elections and their aftermath.

Kenyan cartoonist Patrick Gathara tweeted that the president “clings on to power by barricading himself in the presidential palace, analysts note that his tweets are no longer in all caps which may indicate the famously narcissistic online bully may finally be coming to terms with his fate.”

Indian commentator Mohan Guruswamy wrote in the National Herald that “Now the world’s banana republics have a new candidate member. The incumbent president, Donald Trump, has just declared himself the winner well before the counting process was completed, with postal and early voting still being added.”

Brazilian political commentator Merval Pereira struck a similar tone, saying: “This is a singular event in U.S. democratic history which puts the country in the list of banana republics, an expression created by the Americans themselves.”

But comparisons to a “banana republic” were not confined to foreign critics. The president’ son, Donald Trump Jr., made the same remark as he called for “total war” over unproven voter fraud claims. – Newsweek, 7 November 2020

Darragh Roche is an Irish freelance journalist writing about politics, society and culture.

Lady Liberty & Donald Trump