‘Don Quixote-like quest’: Ukraine attack and easing Covid mandates leave US trucker protest on the fringe
Ryan Wright stood around a campfire in Lupton, Arizona, a town on the Navajo reservation where members of an American trucker convoy protest were resting for the night. As the fire flickered he discussed a conspiracy myth about the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
Putin’s invasion of Ukraine, he proffered, was a distraction. “I’m not the only one that feels this way,” Wright said. “But I feel like it’s a big fat smokescreen to keep everyone distracted on what is really going on in the world.”
Certainly the break out of a new land war in Europe had dealt Wright and his fellow trucker protestors a serious blow. Their attempt to replicate the Canadian trucker protests – which had closed borders and brought chaos to Canada’s capital city – had won wide support from Republican politicians, Fox News and rightwing social media.
urely, the same could happen in the US, whose political divides are so much starker than Canada’s.
But Putin’s invasion had wiped the convoy’s progress off the media map. Having left Barstow in California amid honking horns and cheering supporters, the line of truckers was crossing the entire breadth of the US in a convoy and headed to Washington DC to protest Covid-19 vaccine mandates and a roster of other mostly conservative causes.
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