Democracy versus hypocrisy
US President Joe Biden’s two-day virtual Summit for Democracy, held on 9-10 December 2021 with more than 100 countries’ heads’ participation was more like an attempt to declare the USA as “Champion of Democracy” and the primary force pitting democracies against autocracies, obviously targeting China and Russia. However, a reality check on the USA and its closest allies like India’s internal and external policies exposes kinks, cracks and hypocrisy as regards tall claims of being world largest democracies. Keeping in mind that democracy is a system of rule by laws and the rule of law protects the rights of citizens treating all as equal, maintains order, and limits the power of government, both the USA and India will hardly get 5 out of 10 marks when put to scrutiny.
The continuation of KKK (Ku Klux Klan) hate driven practices forcing the non-white Americans to cry out “I can’t breathe” and the unabated hundreds of foreign military and covert interventions by USA since its creation (see Listing of Notable Deployments of US Military Forces Overseas, 1798-August 2021) under multiple and more than often erroneous pretexts since its creation under chauvinistic foreign policy of interventionism and isolationism, with flawed justification of pursuing a combination of national interest and preemptive self-defence is more like international law of the jungle. Needless to mention that the United Nations Charter and the Charter of the Organisation of American States forbid any intervention by states…. “No State or group of States has the right to intervene, directly or in- directly, for any reason whatsoever, in the internal or external affairs of any other State.”
On that count, China and even Russia fare better than the USA, which is disingenuously attempting to be the backer of so-called democracy. The US picked India as a strategic partner to contest and contain China under Hindutva RSS leader Modi (The Butcher of Gujarat notoriety) has debunked India as a secular democratic state and unleashed extreme atrocities all over India and more so in IIOJ&K in the last two decades. The genocide of Muslims and other minorities including Christians ad Sikhs, desecration and demolition of their places of worship, brutal use of state forces to curb voices of dissent and freedom movements in Kashmir, East India/Khalistan and seven sister states in the North East are only a few examples to quote to expose India as a state sponsoring terrorism against its own people committing dozens of human rights violations every day all over the country.
Indian interventions in neighbouring SAARC countries have forced smaller countries to see India as a shark within SAARC. The concrete proofs of Indian launching of dozens of proxies for devastating sabotage and subversion in Pakistan using Afghanistan and Iranian soil for over two decades has been shared with the UNO and many other countries in the form of a dossier by The Government of Pakistan; nevertheless, the common interests and hypocrisy of so called democratic world keeps them looking the other way as was the case in 1971 when as a result of Indian Greatest conspiracy and collusion between RAW and Mukti Bahini, succeeded in turning East Pakistan to Bangladesh.
The USA and allies believe that despite their non-democratic policies, strategies and practises, they can continue to thrive by the “pot calling the kettle black”; however, risen China and re-assertive Russia seem unified to call that bluff on most of the fronts and in all spheres of influences and theatres of strategic contest. China and Russia, of course, weren’t invited to the summit. That’s understandable enough, but then nor were Singapore or Sri Lanka. Some invitees, such as Pakistan, refused to join—perhaps due to her support for the ‘One China Policy vis-a-vis Taiwan’ and her presence there instead of China.
China’s State Council Information Office on Saturday 4th December 2021 released a white paper titled, “China: Democracy That Works”, arguing that democracy isn’t measured by elections but by addressing the concerns of its people. The said paper says, “Democracy is a concrete phenomenon that is constantly evolving. Rooted in history, culture and tradition, it takes diverse forms and develops along the paths chosen by different peoples based on their exploration and innovation…. In promoting democracy, China has undergone a difficult process of selection, experimentation, practice and development. China has created and developed whole-process people’s democracy in line with its national conditions. This is a form of democracy with distinctive Chinese features which at the same time reflects humanity’s universal desire for democracy. It has fuelled the development of the country and driven the revitalisation of the nation. It has contributed a new model to the international political spectrum,” and concludes, “Today’s world is experiencing change on a scale unseen in a century. It can anticipate hopes and opportunities as well as risks and challenges. All paths to democracy chosen by the peoples themselves deserve proper respect. We should pursue peaceful development, safeguard fairness and justice, increase democracy and freedom, and improve the people’s wellbeing. This is the only way to build synergy among all civilisations in the quest for a better future. Civilisations are enriched by exchanges and mutual learning. The Chinese people are willing to work together with all other peoples around the world to carry forward the common values of humanity—peace, development, fairness, justice, democracy and freedom. In a spirit of mutual respect and following the principle of seeking common ground while setting aside differences, we will add new elements to the world’s political structure and advance towards a global community of shared future together.”
China even joined hands with Russia in producing an essay (Respecting people Democratic Rights) co-signed by their US ambassadors and effectively expressed their states’ views about Biden’s summit, “The United States will be hosting the online Summit for Democracy on December 9-10, 2021, empowering itself to define who is to attend the event and who is not, who is a “democratic country” and who is not eligible for such status. An evident product of its Cold-War mentality, this will stoke up ideological confrontation and a rift in the world, creating new “dividing lines.” This trend contradicts the development of the modern world. It is impossible to prevent the shaping of a global polycentric architecture but could strain the objective process. China and Russia firmly reject this move—no country has the right to judge the world’s vast and varied political landscape by a single yardstick, and having other countries copy one’s political system through colour revolution, regime change and even use of force go against international law, and are obviously anti-democratic.”
Pakistan is one classic example of being the target of the American policy of the “economic hitman” that has experienced almost all facets of the said policy—carrot and stick being the continued leading component, exercised through economic coercion through IMF, World Bank, FATF and other IFIs with their representatives always there in Pakistan as Trojan Horses to take care of American economic and Strategic security interests. Nevertheless, the fact remains that the USA and India stand clearly defined strategic partners; whereas some haze, confusion or stumbling blocks are Keeping China from standing solidly and openly with Pakistan. The earlier that mist is cleared by both the governments, the better it would be for Strategic Stability and Security of the region and beyond. The pace of CPEC must be maintained and any differences must be resolved amicably. The USA needs to be suitably conveyed that Pakistan-China friendship and strategic relationship is as good as the US-India partnership.
The writer is a retired senior army officer with experience in international relations, military diplomacy and analysis of geo-political and strategic security issues.
Pakistan is one classic example of being the target of the American policy of the “economic hitman”.