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As a mob of pro-Trump protesters sieged the US Capitol on Wednesday, the world watched in shock.
Images of rioters breaking windows, ransacking government offices, and facing-off with law enforcement officials spread like wildfire on social media.
By the next morning, most international news organizations had run the story on their front page, and world leaders had mainly spoken out against President Trump and his followers’ actions.
In the aftermath of the incident, as the country is scrambling to respond to the Trump-incited attack, the rest of the world is processing the events.
“It was like watching America fall apart in front of our eyes,” Emile Stonebridge, a 53-year-old teacher from London, England, told Insider.
“I don’t follow politics very closely…but as I was watching the events on my television, I just thought: ‘America has gone crazy,'” she added.
Read more: Could Trump mass-pardon his supporters who rioted at the Capitol? He has the power, and there is historical precedent.
Stonebridge is not alone. In the last few days, thousands of people worldwide —political or not — have reacted to the news out of America, mostly in disbelief.
Some have condemned the actions, while others have drawn comparisons to their own political situations at home, whether in Russia, Germany, or Hong Kong. Insider spoke to some of them.
America stands alone
Despite being America’s neighbor, Canada, has, for the most part, been trying to distance itself from the country ever since Trump was elected president four years ago, says Maggie Casey, a 24-year-old law student from Ontario.
Casey told Insider that the incident in the Capitol only made this split more palpable.
“There continues to be this distancing from America, in that I genuinely feel that people don’t know what’s going to happen in this country anymore, which is scary,” she said.
“Canada is not perfect either, but there’s a sense of wanting to distance ourselves because America seems to have lost their way,” she added.
Many Western Europeans have felt similar over the years.
Emmanuel Aubert, a computer scientist from Lille, France, told Insider: “Many people here saw this coming, but to see that it actually ended up happening was still upsetting and strangely, still a surprise.”
“If there was even an ounce of respect or confidence in Trump and his party of puppy dogs, what happened in DC most likely eradicated all of it,” he added.
Read more: Parler should be taken seriously as a hotbed of extremism and conspiracy theories, a new study shows
Ismail Aouden, a 37-old banker in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, added that Europe should “stop looking up to the US as the most democratic country of the world” and “focus more on ourselves.
“The US needs to get their act together before they can act as a teacher of the world,” he added.
Where were the police?
Auoden also said he was “shocked” to see the lack of law enforcement present in Washington DC on Wednesday, a view shared by most of the people Insider spoke to for this article.
Iqra Colombo, a social scientist from Berlin, Germany, …read more
Source:: Business Insider