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'Summit' seen undermining democracy

By Meng Zhe & Xu-Pan Yiru | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2023-03-30 14:09

The United States' "Summit for Democracy" has nothing to do with democracy at all. It is just another way for the US to expand its hegemony. The recent democracy summit showcased the White House administration's widely criticized "democracy versus authoritarianism" geopolitical strategy to divide countries against one another.

Voices are growing inside the country about how undemocratic the US actually is. "It's entirely geopolitical," said political-economic analyst Lawrence Freeman. "They have a geopolitical doctrine that the United States has to be number one."

"It's very hypocritical to act like the US has the authority to decide this part of the world is democratic," said American political activist Medea Benjamin, "That's not the way the world should work."

Its list of cohosts is a great example of hypocrisy. South Korea, the Netherlands, Zambia and Costa Rica are the cohosts of the event. Four countries from four continents, and each represents the US growing push to counter China in the region.

By inviting the Netherlands to cohost the event, the US wants to rally the country into backing its chip competition with China. The Netherlands was not happy when the US pressured the country's ASML to stop its shipping its high-tech chip making machines to China.

South Korea is a key actor, as a critical part of the US chip alliance against China. The country is also an important pillar for Biden to revive the US pivot to East Asia.

China has helped build roads and other vital infrastracture in Costa Rica and Zambia, but the US is keen to expand its influence over these countries.

Days before the summit, the US released a report attacking human rights conditions in countries around the world, except one, the US itself. The hypocritical report received widespread backlash.

"The report is out, nothing in it stands out. Expect for the breathtaking hypocrisy of America," according to the Indian news program Vantage with Palki Sharma.

In the name of promoting US-style democracy, the US has imposed unilateral sanctions and long-arm jurisdiction in Cuba, Syria and Zimbabwe; it even invaded Iraq, a country that posed no threat to the US, and over one million Iraqis were killed in the past two decades as a result.

"The US has taken so many illegal acts against other governments for so many years, overthrowing democratic governments, interfering in the internal affairs, imposing oppressive sanctions on countries, like Cuba, Venezuela, Syria that create tremendous devastation inside those countries and lead to poverty and it destroying people's standard of living. These are very undemocratic moves that the United States is taking," said Benjamin.

How the US sees the world today consists of grand moral declarations that divide the world into black or white, friends or foes, or their so-called democracy or authoritarian. All this evokes the inertia of an aging empire. Today, insular elites operate by mouthing rhetoric that distracts domestic audiences from the real issues they face at home. These elites are unable and unwilling to accept that the world out there is rapidly changing.

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