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'Summit for Democracy' to create more divisions, less unity

chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2023-03-28 16:05

This photo taken on March 21, 2023 shows metal barricades placed near the Capitol building in Washington, D.C., the United States. [Photo/Xinhua]

The US administration is going to co-host the second "Summit for Democracy" with Costa Rica, the Netherlands, Republic of Korea and Republic of Zambia on March 29-30.

The US previously hosted the first "Summit for Democracy" in late 2021, which drew criticism for its exclusion of nearly half of the world's countries, creating divisions and drawing ideological lines.

There are nearly 200 countries in the world, and democracies can be of different forms. The US is trying to impose its self-styled "democratic" judgment on all countries in the world, denying different forms of democratic theory and practice. This is typical American exceptionalism.

The upcoming summit shows the US' determination to continue to divide the world by rallying up countries under the banner of "democracy", so as to maintain its hegemony.

"Such 'summits' only fuel international tensions and draw up new dividing lines, splitting the globe into 'friends' and 'foes', stigmatizing countries, pinning them down with labels, and enforcing an undefined "rules-based order," said Russian diplomat Alexander Mantytskiy.

Claiming itself as the "model of democracy", the US has shown double standards toward the democracy and human rights of other countries by incessantly interfering in their internal affairs and waging wars under the guise of "democracy". It has created regional turbulence and humanitarian disasters.

And the truth is that the US is far from a "beacon of democracy". From the Capitol Hill riots in 2021 to entrenched racism, and from the tragic mishandling of the COVID-19 pandemic to the widening wealth gap, the American democracy has shown cracks from within.

A report, The State of Democracy in the United States: 2022, which the Chinese Foreign Ministry released on Monday, pointed out the vicious cycle of democratic pretensions, dysfunctional politics and divided society that continued to plague the US last year. 

The American democracy is now gravely ill with money politics, personality politics, social rifts, and the gulf between the rich and poor. The maladies afflicting the US political system have deeply infected US politics and society.

Another report released in September, 2022 by the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace said the US democracy is at a "dangerous inflection point" and the country faces a democratic setback.

According to a Quinnipiac University Poll, 67 percent of respondents believe that American democracy is in danger of collapse, and 48 percent think there could be another Capitol riot in the US.

Moreover, the young people in the US seem to be increasingly discontent with the US democracy. In 2022, a survey by the Institute of Politics at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government revealed only 4 percent of young Americans under the age of 30 percent believed the US democratic system to be "healthy" when compared with the 2021 polling, which showed that 7 percent rated the US democracy as healthy.

So what authority does the US have to lecture the rest of the world about democracy? The US administration should focus on examining its own democratic problems and figure out practical and feasible rectification measures.

At a time when the world is facing common woes and challenges – ranging from climate change to public health - the collaboration between countries, especially between the US and China, is highly important. The US arbitrarily making judgments on democracy in other countries through this event will incite further estrangement, division and confrontation.

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