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You are here News Politics Obama criticises 'strongman politics' in coded attack on Trump

Obama criticises 'strongman politics' in coded attack on Trump

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Obama criticizes 'strongman politics'Barack Obama has delivered a stinging rebuke to his successor as US president, condemning politicians who trade in the politics of fear and deny objective reality and, when caught in a lie, double down.

In what has been described as his most important speech since leaving office, Obama used the Nelson Mandela annual lecture in front of an ecstatic 15,000-strong crowd in Johannesburg to warn that “the politics of fear, resentment, retrenchment” are on the move “at a pace unimaginable just a few years ago.”

Without once mentioning Donald Trump by name, Obama took aim at the “utter loss of shame among political leaders when they’re caught in a lie and they just double down and lie some more”. These days “people just make stuff up” in politics and no longer show embarrassment when being caught out.

In what was Obama’s first visit to Africa since leaving office in 2017, he warned that the denial of facts and the rise of the strongman could be the undoing of democracy.

He said he did not know where to start with politicians who, faced with overwhelming scientific opinion, described climate change as “an elaborate hoax”.

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