Letters from an American, May 24.2021

… we learn about Belarus, Alexander Lukashenko, and the shocking abduction of Roman Protasevich and Sofia Sapega (his girlfriend) by forcing the commercial airliner they were on down when it crossed Belarus airspace… Europe and the US are protesting in strong terms, but the question is whether anything meaningful can be done… can the journalist and his girlfriend be saved?…

Anne Applebaum of The Atlantic, an authoritative scholar of authoritarianism, notes that autocrats are watching to see how the West reacts, since they, too, would like to be able to control their dissident communities in exile, showing them: “You are not safe. You are never safe. Not even if you live in a democracy; not even if you have political asylum; not even if you are sitting on a commercial plane, thousands of feet above the ground.”1

  1. Heather Cox Richardson, Anne Applebaum: https://heathercoxrichardson.substack.com/p/may-24-2021 ↩︎