AMAC Exclusive – By Ben Solis
Late last month, conservatives in Spain scored a series of major victories in the country’s local elections, prompting panic from the leftist national government headed by Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez. The results marked yet another significant win for the right in Europe and highlighted growing momentum for conservative movements globally.
On May 27, Spaniards sent a clear message that they are fed up with the direction of the country under the liberal Spanish Socialist Party, with the party losing 500,000 votes compared to the previous elections. Meanwhile, the center-right Popular Party (PP) saw their vote share increase by 1.8 million, or about 35 percent.
Also of note, the conservative Vox party nearly tripled their vote share, earning 7.2 percent of ballots – and in many cases tipping the balance in favor of a PP-led conservative majority. Like they have many other conservative parties in Europe, the global media and leftists have slandered Vox as “fascist.”
The growing support for Vox and other European conservative parties is another sign that the left’s plan to silence and destroy conservatives by demonizing them as a “threat to democracy” is failing in Europe just as it is in the United States. Through the most recent campaign, Vox focused on traditional values, including Christian virtue, as the most effective remedy to the excesses of wokeism. Their firm stance on tradition and morality have earned the ire of leftists.
Vox and other right-wing parties in Europe have taken inspiration from the meteoric rise of Giorgio Meloni in Italy, who proved that a principled conservative can still win even after decades of liberal dominance.
There has also been a growing sense of solidarity among conservatives in both Europe and around the world, as evidenced in the emergence of institutions like the Madrid Forum, or Foro Madrid. A think tank aligned with Vox created Foro Madrid in 2020 to be the answer to the growing prevalence of radical leftism within government and societal institutions around the world.
The founders of Foro Madrid have defined its mission as “making the world aware of the consequences of the extreme left agenda and its failed governing system.” The group’s “Madrid Charter” includes a defense of basic conservative principles like individual rights, national sovereignty through border control, and free and secure elections.
Although Foro Madrid was originally envisioned as an alliance of conservatives in Spain and Hispanic countries, it has now expanded to include conservatives in Italy as well as several other European countries.
The Foro Madrid is also a direct response to the Sao Paulo Forum, an organization of pro-socialist left-wing political parties in Latin America and the Caribbean. The group was founded in 1990 as a “safe haven” for socialists when the dust from the crumbled Berlin Wall still hung in the air.
The Sao Paulo Forum today functions as an international body connecting leftist parties in Latin and South America. Through their alliance with domestic political groups, the Forum seeks to exert influence on both elections and public policy, in effect attempting to act as an international government.
During a recent meeting in April in Bogota, the Sao Paulo Forum attacked the democratically elected government in Guatemala, praised Xi Jinping, demanded the lifting of all sanctions on Cuba, urged an increase in worldwide spending on the “climate catastrophe,” and called on the United Nations to declare that every person has a right to immigrate and be admitted wherever they wish.
One major beneficiary of the Sao Paulo Forum is current Brazilian President Lula da Silva, whose Worker’s Party is a member of the group.
After initially strong economic results under Lula – which most economists attributed to lingering effects from former President Jair Bolsonaro’s policies – the Brazilian economy has stagnated, with inflation remaining above 13 percent.
The country has also seen a significant exodus of companies, with executives deciding that Lula’s promises to raise the minimum wage, expand entitlements, and an “electric car for everyone” have now made business in South America’s most populous country untenable.
Lula has also waged a relentless war on supporters of Bolsonaro, accusing some farmer groups of being “Nazis.” In a move that exposed his claims that the Brazilian right is a “threat to democracy” as mere projection, Lula is also using the Brazilian Supreme Court to invent legal reasoning that would make Bolsonaro ineligible to run for office again – another tactic that will no doubt sound familiar to conservatives in the United States.
In May, a Lula ally on the supreme court ordered an investigation into several of Bolsonaro’s allies which resulted in their homes being raided and searched, a clear intimidation tactic. The courts have even demanded that former Bolsonaro officials hand over their private financial information.
Another Sao Paulo Forum enthusiast who has already been booted from office is former Peruvian president Pedro Castillo. Last year, Castillo attempted to dissolve the Peruvian congress, which was then controlled by the opposition party. In response, the congress impeached and removed Castillo.
One of Castillo’s policies that was particularly unpopular was a plan to give up some of Peru’s land to allow Bolivia access to the coast. According to Congressman Jose Cueto, a retired admiral, this plan was originally the brainchild of former Bolivian President Evo Morales, Castillo’s colleague from the Sao Paulo Forum.
As Peruvians protested Castillo, many blocked the routes to the Mexican embassy, fearing that Castillo would call on Mexican President Obrador – another Sao Paulo colleague – to grant him asylum.
Around the globe, democratic peoples are rising up and rejecting the creeping authoritarianism and failed policies of leftist regimes. Predictions of the permanent decline of conservatism, once all the rage in the global media and societal elites, now look vastly overblown.
Ben Solis is the pen name of an international affairs journalist, historian, and researcher.
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