From Latin America to Europe, the Middle East and beyond, newspapers around the world have expressed a growing mix of dismay and contempt as Donald Trump continues to rack up victories in the Republican party presidential primaries. But as the American billionaire moves closer to the nomination, international journalists are widening their analysis to note that this implausible political personage is not alone on the world stage. "Should we really laugh about the Republican debates when they build up their hate for Islam, without thinking about Le Pen, Orban and others?" Sophie Thresher writes for French daily Libération, referring to far-right French National Front Leader Marine Le Pen and Hungary's authoritarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban, both openly hostile to Muslims.
"Trump promised to erect a wall to stop migrants from entering the United States," Thresher continues. "But is there anything to laugh about and to lecture the Americans on when Europe is also letting insurmountable barriers be erected against migrants and refugees fleeing war, leaving them vulnerable to trafficking, the cold and death? Is British Prime Minister David Cameron any different from the Republican candidates when the former has washed his hands of the situation in Calais and the latter refuse to welcome refugees from Iraq and Syria?"
Danish daily Politiken asks rhetorically whether a Trump-like candidate could successfully emerge in Denmark, noting that one already did. Political scientist Martin Larsen writes that this Scandinavian Trump was named Mogens Glistrup, a controversial Danish politician, lawyer, tax protestor and parliament member (1973—1983 and 1987—1990) who founded the right-wing Progress Party. Glistrup too was outrageous, openly viewing tax cheats as "freedom fighters" and bragging on national television that he himself paid no income taxes.
"Perhaps most importantly, Glistrup, like Trump, was a political outsider," Larsen writes. "Secondly, Glistrup, like Trump, was saying things that were not only politically incorrect, but that seemed absolutely insane given the political culture that dominated in the '70s." Glistrup, for example, had suggested the abolition of the social security system to be replaced with oatmeal machines in the streets.
Such global commentary about the U.S. presidential election has been ample. Ahead of the March 15 make-or-break contests for GOP candidates Marcio Rubio and John Kasich in Ohio, Florida and other states, Worldcrunch continues its regular curation of presidential campaign coverage, from all languages and corners of the world: