If 2020 has taught us anything concrete, it is to expect the unexpected. We must be vigilant and prepared for the tumultuous times in which we live.
You would not be mistaken for having lost all bets during 2020. The coronavirus crisis, lockdowns and ‘social distancing’, surprising election results in the US and accusations of electoral fraud, riots in the formerly peaceful streets of Western Europe and North America, Brexit complications, and the potential for escalation all suggest we are in for another very challenging year ahead. None of these events bear the hallmark of finality.
Britain’s relationship with the EU, after many years of argument, would benefit immensely from strong cooperation in key areas. Britain offers valuable agricultural exports to European countries. So too will the UK’s technological and medical sector contribute greatly to the continental market. I expect a tense year ahead on both sides of the Channel, but one in which Britain will slowly emerge from the bloc’s shadow to form its political character on the world stage. I believe it is Brussels, rather than Westminster, that will face the tougher internal PR challenge.
Hungary and Poland are set for continued standoffs with the EU on various crucial matters, including arguments over the rule of law, abortion, nationalism and the future direction of the bloc. It would not be surprising if other, smaller member nations joined the rebellion. Yet this fightback, rather than a full-scale departure, could simply mean refocusing the relationship between member states on economics, rather than further political or cultural integration. The determining factor will be how well European governments manage to hold the political centre and resist the kind of backbench pressure David Cameron experienced before Brexit. Nevertheless, widespread calls to reform the increasingly outdated bloc will continue.
Across the Atlantic, the US will provide the biggest story of 2021. What happens in America never stays in America, and there is good reason to expect heightened chaos from next month onwards. With a national debt of almost $30 trillion, calls in high places for martial law and a new election supervised by the military, talk of civil war, and over 69 million jobless claims, the new President will have to contend with some of the gravest challenges in US history. Although the Electoral College has chosen Biden, with Trump walking the plank amid accusations of cheating, three weeks will feel like three months. It is very possible the new year will begin with an explosive and bruising showdown between blue and red America.
Militarily, the world’s superpowers must be very careful not to escalate their rhetoric and war intentions. China, Russia, Iran, North Korea, Israel, and even the US have made noises in that direction, which would represent a catastrophe for life on earth. It is a duty for conservative-minded politicians in all countries not to increase the possibility of conflict, but seek peace and other ways of mediating disputes.
Global concerns about the transhumanist agenda and related digital IDs are set to continue. In relation to coronavirus, the novel vaccines could assist a return to normality, but they cannot be mandated or made a requirement of re-entry into society. There are worrying signs of this happening in various sectors all over the world, and conservatives should be at the forefront of challenging repressive medical regimes that offer no choice to citizens on the question of vaccination.
Across the globe, other COVID-19 measures should also be scrutinised regularly. What began as temporary measures last spring have become too familiar to us. Lockdowns and ‘social distancing’ have brought widespread damage to societies the world over, harming people’s health, finances, and the desire for community and other vital needs. Measures taken must be proportionate to the severity of the disease, which appears far lower than original estimates suggested. As conservatives, we must fight unceasingly for our ancient freedoms, rights and to fulfil the duties we owe one another in the face of rising socialism.
There are positive signs of a conservative renewal. Challenges to the worst of EU hegemony from Britain, Poland and Hungary, as well as a clear desire across America to drain the Washington swamp, increasing numbers of the public growing tired of political correctness and a refocusing on the importance of traditional values and long lost community, especially during a time of ‘distancing’ and isolation, all point to a new era on the horizon.
Whatever comes our way, it is precisely the traditional values we have defended and promoted on Conservatives Global that will help us through. There is no substitute for the support and motivation offered by strong family bonds, close friends who help each other in times of need, belonging to a community and a history, a culture of saving rather than wasting, the importance of efficiency and making the most of our available resources, as well as of course personal responsibility and faith in God, for those of us who have it.
From the team and me at Conservatives Global, we wish all our readers, contributors and supporters a joyful Christmastide, and a Happy New Year.