Milei at CPAC


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The global far right comes to CPAC

The Conservative Political Action Conference has its eyes beyond the water’s edge in 2024, and far-right movements from around the world have flocked to National Harbor, Maryland to address the conference’s audience of conservative die-hards. The event’s 2024 motto, “where globalism goes to die,” is apparently making an exception for global movements with authoritarian and isolationist strains. Representatives and leaders from these movements have taken to the stage to prescribe how to replicate their harsh tactics in the United States.  As the conference’s influence has waned domestically, CPAC has expanded its horizons in recent years, launching auxiliary events across the globe in countries like MexicoJapan, HungaryBrazilSouth Korea, and Australia.

  • El Salvador President Nayib Bukele

  • El Salvador’s far-right president, Nayib Bukele, who recently won a second five-year term, received a “rock-star welcome” when he arrived at CPAC on Thursday, February 22, to give a speech.

    Since his election in 2019, Bukele has declared a state of emergency in his country and promised to crack down on gangs and criminal activity. According to Amnesty International, under Bukele’s leadership, Salvadoran authorities have committed “massive human rights violations, including thousands of arbitrary detentions and violations of due process, as well as torture and ill-treatment, and at least 18 people have died in state custody.”  The human rights organization has also accused Bukele’s government of using “torture” and “enforced disappearances” in its supposed gang purge.

    During his speech, Bukele seemingly advised America’s next president to follow in his footsteps.

    “The next president of the United States must not only win an election, he must have the vision, the will, and the courage to do whatever it takes,” Bukele said. “He must be able to identify the underlying forces that will conspire him, that will conspire against him. These dark forces are already taking over your country.”

    At the end of his speech, Bukele encouraged audience members to “put up the fight because in the end it will be worth it. It has been for us, and you will have your country back."

  • Video file

    Citation From Right Side Broadcasting Network's February 22 CPAC livestream

  • Alternative For Germany’s Christine Anderson

  • Germany’s anti-immigrant, hard-right populist party Alternative for Germany has seen hundreds of thousands take to the streets in Germany in recent weeks to protest following a report that members of the party were present at a meeting with right-wing extremists to discuss deporting millions of immigrants. It sent Christine Anderson, a member of the European Parliament, to CPAC this year.

    Anderson sat for an interview with former Trump White House chief strategist Steve Bannon’s during a live recording of War Room: Battleground at CPAC. During the interview, Anderson told the CPAC audience to not be afraid of government noncompliance. 

    “Most people just complied with whatever the government asked of them because they were afraid of what the government might do to them if they didn’t comply,” Anderson said. “People should be way more afraid of what the government will do if you do comply. So, take away the weapon. Don’t be afraid anymore. Just let them threaten you with whatever they want.”

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    Citation From the February 22, 2024, edition of LindellTV's War Room: Battleground

  • Hungary’s Miklos Szantho

  • Miklos Szantho, director general of the Center for Fundamental Rights, a conservative Hungarian think-tank that organizes CPAC Hungary and promotes “Judeo-Christian social traditions,” spoke about Hungary and conservatism.

    In a 2023 interview with the Washington Times, Szantho described the CPAC Hungary's motto, “United We Stand!,” as representing the Hungarian right’s hopes of continuing “to broaden and deepen the network we have built from the Danube to the Potomac in recent years.” Szantho also claimed Hungary and the United States must work together to “finally defeat the liberal left” and that “Hungary has shown that the progressive mainstream can be conquered.”

    He echoed those sentiments in his CPAC 2024 speech, telling the audience, “Let me be blunt: The cult of woke and its priests in the mainstream press, Hollywood, the music industry, and corporate boardrooms are a clear and present danger to our way of life and even our security.”

    He went on to claim Hungary understands what the US is going through because “woke is just a new form of communism. It is a civilizational threat.”

  • Video file

    Citation From the February 23, 2024, livestream of the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC)

  • Szantho closed his speech by announcing, “Together we will make America great again, together we will make Europe great again, together we will make this world sane again, together we will win and they will lose.”

  • Video file

    Citation From the February 23, 2024, livestream of the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC)

  • Argentina's President Javier Milei

  • Argentinian President Javier Milei is a self-described “anarcho-capitalist” and the leader of the country’s Libertarian Party. Since taking office, Milei has purged thousands of government jobs and pushed “severe reforms” that have hurt the country’s struggling economy.

    After spending most of his speech giving his thoughts on economics, Milei concluded by telling the audience to stand against socialism, regulations, and the idea of market failure.

  • Video file

    Citation From the February 24, 2024, OAN coverage of CPAC

  • Video also circulated on social media of Trump meeting Milei.

  • Spain’s Santiago Abascal

  • Santiago Abascal, the leader of Spain’s ardently nationalist far-right party Vox, has positioned himself and his party as anti-feminist, and anti-LGBTQ rights.

    Abascal is currently under investigation for comments he made to an Argentinian newspaper suggesting that a time would come when Spaniards would want to see the country’s current socialist prime minister “strung up by his feet."

    During his CPAC speech, Abascal warned of the dangers of socialism, claiming Spain suffers “at the hands of a government of communists and socialists” who “protect and support the terrorism of Hamas” and make alliances with the “criminal regimes of Venezuela and Nicaragua.”

    Abascal concluded his speech by saying, “To move forward, to make the West great again, I want to say here today that you should all be assured that the Spanish patriots are ready to fight side-by-side the American patriots.”

  • Video file

    Citation From the February 23, 2024, livestream of the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC)

  • Japan’s Hiroaki “Jay” Aeba

  • Hiroaki “Jay” Aeba is the founder of CPAC Japan and chairman of the Japanese Conservative Union, a Japanese clone of the American group that organizes CPAC.

    In addition to his conservative politics, Aeba has also earned notoriety for his involvement in a Japanese religious cult called Happy Science that sells “miracle cures” for COVID-19. Aeba also founded the cult’s political wing, the Happiness Realization Party, which pushes “ultranationalism” and measures to increase Japan’s population.

    During his 2024 CPAC speech, Aeba praised CPAC chairman Matt Sclapp for bringing conservative world leaders together, telling the audience, “Now CPAC is the place for conservative world leaders, for the key men in every country, to come and share their ideas.”

    Aeba also claimed that the “U.S. and the world and Japan will be better off” once Trump wins reelection and that he will “stabilize the entire world.

  • Video file

    Citation From the February 23, 2024, livestream of the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) 2024

  • England’s Liz Truss

  • During her CPAC appearance, former British prime minister Liz Truss, who served only 50 days as the country’s leader, pushed anti-trans and anti-woke talking points and fearmongered about immigration.

    She warned that “the very basis of Western civilization is being undermined” and that our borders are “out of control, with illegal immigrants able to enter our countries freely.”

    Truss also fearmongered about about how “our history is being challenged” and “our biology is being challenged” and claimed, “We've got a new kind of economics now in the West. It's called wokenomics.”

  • Video file

    Citation From the February 22, 2024, livestream of the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) 2024

  • Truss argued that conservatives needed to arm themselves with “a bigger bazooka” than merely endorsing the “right policies,” before weighing on the 2024 U.S. elections. “Of course, we need a Republican back in the White House, we need it desperately,” she said. “It’s not just America that needs it desperately, we need it desperately right across the free world, because you are the leaders of the free world, like it or not.”