Three recent events, each part of a long series of similar events, has led me to establish the Bailey Award for Comparative International Thuggery (BACT).
- President Vladimir Putin of Russia's statement that in all likelihood the interference in the US presidential election of 2016 was due to "Russian citizens of Ukrainian, Tatar, Jewish or other origin."
- Revelations concerning the massive interference by China in Australia's political system and society through the use of cyber-technologies and social media, as well as a network of agents of influence within Australia, some ethnic Chinese, some not.
- The threat on the part of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to invade Aegean islands belonging to his NATO partner Greece.
We all know of failed states, such as Syria, Libya and Yemen, but we should now establish another category of states: thug states, beginning with two huge thugs - China and Russia, equipped with thousands of nuclear weapons, and one medium-sized thug, Turkey, equipped with a president whose mouth is that country's equivalent of weapons of mass destruction.