Columnnist

Gwynne Dyer

Independent journalist

Gwynne Dyer is an independent journalist whose articles are published in 45 countries. His new book is 'Growing Pains: The Future of Democracy (and Work)'.

Gwynne Dyer
30 Jul 2021

Democracy is default mode of civilisations

At first I was going to write about the "Arab Problem", because there is not a single functioning democracy in the Arab world. This week's presidential coup in Tunisia has probably ended democracy in the one country that actually achieved it during the "Arab Spring" of 2010-11.

30 Jul 2021 26
26 Jul 2021

Donkeys finally twig to climate change message

Zeitgeist is a slippery word. At best it's just a fancy German way of saying "the spirit of the times"; at worst it is only pretentious noise. So maybe we should say "inflection point" instead. I think we are passing through an inflection point.

26 Jul 2021 71
21 Jul 2021

Bodies will pile high indeed, Mr Johnson

'Let the bodies pile high in their thousands," expostulated Boris Johnson in his private office, but the door was open and a number of witnesses heard him.

21 Jul 2021 42
17 Jul 2021

Today it's Zuma, tomorrow it could be Trump

Sooner or later ex-president Donald Trump is bound to be indicted for some crime. It doesn't matter which -- it could be a fraud or corruption charge, or a sexual offence, or incitement to violence, or even just tax evasion. (That's what finally got American gangster Al Capone.) And it doesn't matter whether he's convicted, either; the real drama will come before that.

17 Jul 2021 56
14 Jul 2021

The puzzle of who killed Haiti's Moise

The presidential dogs were still alive, which meant that something was very wrong with the official explanation of the assassination of Haitian President Jovenel Moise on July 7. In very poor countries even moderately prosperous people whose houses contain things worth stealing usually have large dogs, and those dogs are trained to attack intruders.

14 Jul 2021 4
9 Jul 2021

Killer 'Wave-7' heat getting far more common

First the "heat dome", with temperatures in the mid-to-high forties Celsius in many parts of western North America for up to a week (49.6°C in Lytton, British Columbia). Then, when the forests were tinder-dry, came the wildfires (which wiped Lytton out). From northern California to northern British Columbia, the records were being broken every day.

9 Jul 2021 11
Killer 'Wave-7' heat getting far more common
5 Jul 2021

Tigray split risks ending Abiy's 'empire'

Most analysts thought it would take a year or two of guerilla war for the rebels in Tigray to drive Ethiopian federal forces out of their state, but it has only taken eight months. "The capital of Tigray, Mekelle, is under our control," Getachew Reda, spokesman for the Tigray People's Liberation Front (TPLF), said last week.

5 Jul 2021 1
Tigray split risks ending Abiy's 'empire'
30 Jun 2021

Vulnerability marks 100 years of the CCP

The Chinese Communist Party is celebrating the centenary of its foundation tomorrow and most people in China accept the origin myth that justifies its dictatorial rule. China was a horrendously impoverished and unequal society in 1921, the official line says, and owes its current prosperity and freedom from foreign rule to the Communist revolution of 1949.

30 Jun 2021 41
25 Jun 2021

Fascists really are coming in the United States

Godwin's Law, coined in 1990, says that as a discussion on the internet grows longer, the likelihood of somebody being compared to Hitler or the Nazis rises inexorably towards 100%. But once in a very long while the comparison is correct.

25 Jun 2021 23
17 Jun 2021

Is it too late for Iran to rejoin nuclear treaty?

'Lifting Trump's sanctions, @SecBlinken, is a legal & moral obligation, NOT negotiating leverage. Didn't work for Trump -- won't work for you," tweeted Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif late last month. But what if US Secretary of State Antony Blinken (and President Joe Biden) have just decided that reviving the 2015 nuclear deal is a lost cause?

17 Jun 2021 17