Hillary Clinton lambasts Putin as she warns against ‘rising tide of illiberalism’

Hillary Clinton blamed Russian hackers for missing out on the White House (Brian Lawless/PA) Credit: PA Wire/PA Images

Hillary Clinton has warned against a “rising tide of illiberalism” as she lambasted Russian President Vladimir Putin for undermining democracy.

The former US first lady, who lost the race for the White House to Donald Trump in 2016, also blamed Russian hackers for missing out on the top job.

She received an honorary degree from Trinity College Dublin on Friday and addressed an audience of students and academics.

“We are in the midst of a global struggle between liberal democracy and a rising tide of illiberalism.

“Vladimir Putin has positioned himself as the leader of an authoritarian, white supremacist and xenophobic movement that wants to break up the EU, weaken America’s traditional alliances and undermine democracy.”

There has been a new cold war between Russia and the West, most recently fuelled by Moscow’s role in the Syrian civil war and the poisoning of former Russian double agent Sergei Skripal and his daughter in England.

She said the US was caught in a “perfect storm” of anger and resentment following alleged unprecedented intervention in the election by the FBI and information warfare by the Kremlin.

“What we have learned about Russian interference in our election is more than alarming, it is a clear and present danger to western democracy.”

She said fundamental rights were under assault like never before and the consequences were severe.

The former secretary of state criticised the Trump administration for “hyper-partisanship, polarisation, gridlock and stalemate” which she said undermined confidence in democracy.

“These problems are exacerbated by an administration set on waging war on the rule of law, delegitimising elections, undermining truth and reason, perpetrating shameless corruption, rejecting the idea that our leaders should be public servants who put the common good over their own personal and political interests.”