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What does the US democracy export: salvation or destruction?

chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2023-09-21 15:57

Ma Xuejing/China Daily

The United States, a self-proclaimed beacon of democracy, has been fervently exporting "American-style democracy" to further its foreign expansion and maintain US hegemony, resulting in upheaval and instability around the world, said an opinion piece published on the website of Taihe Institute on Sept 8.

According to the article, the US has a long history of exporting democracy, with its foreign expansion intricately entwined with this endeavor. This cultural colonization and institutional transformation of other nations and peoples under the banner of "exporting democracy" serves not only as a means to assert hegemony but also as a significant expression of the political theological mission bestowed by American exceptionalism. From the early days of its founding, the US has employed tactics such as territorial expansion, military intervention and democratic transplantation to gradually expand the scope of its democracy exportation. 

The article pointed out that the pursuit of interests is the most important reason for America's relentless export of democracy. From the American perspective, as long as countries worldwide adhere to the American model of democracy and align their democratic process with American preferences, the US can potentially establish itself as the global hegemon. Employing lofty rhetoric such as "democratic elections" and "freedom of speech", the US seeks to incite people, manipulates public opinion, influence elections and parliamentary struggles by cultivating pro-American political forces and civil groups in target nations.

It also laid bare a variety of methods that the US has adopted throughout its history of exporting democracy, including military, economic, political, diplomatic, cultural and propaganda strategies. Among these, economic aid and sanctions are the most frequently used. The US links economic assistance to democratic reforms in recipient countries, increasing aid for countries that align with its democratic standards and further its interests, and reducing or imposing economic sanctions on those that do not.

The article warned that the US export of democracy endangers not only itself but also the rest of the world. Its belligerent policies have significantly strained the country's economic strength. Purportedly under the banner of anti-terrorism, the export has exacerbated the threat posed by violent extremists within its own borders. In achieving its end, the US has not hesitated to employ double standards, resort to violence and employ deception, which has substantially tarnished its image and credibility.

Under the name of "democracy" and "human rights", the US has initiated numerous wars, bypassing the UN Security Council and placing its own "house rules" above international law, causing catastrophic consequences to many countries and flagrantly violating international law, including the UN Charter. Similarly, the US has waged wars in the name of anti-terrorism, leading to ongoing conflicts worldwide and a vicious cycle of anti-terrorism responses, ultimately resulting in sustained turmoil in the Middle East and the global proliferation of terrorist entities.

The article concluded by calling for the US to confront reality, engage in self-reflection, and demonstrate greater respect for itself as well as other nations.

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