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Boris Johnson and Donald Trump (Images: AAP)

The two cities most symbolic of the "free world" are not very free right now. At the start of an historic week for the West, its two key capitals are under a state of emergency.

Both London and Washington DC have imposed this drastic step not because of a coordinated terror attack from foreign extremists or a sudden natural disaster. These capitals are in this state because the heads of the government in both nations have failed in their basic duty to protect their citizens.

This abject failure has arisen from the absolute incompetence and bloody-mindedness of two men who are not leaders and have proven unfit for public office despite winning popular support in democratic elections.