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Biden’s Democracy Summit indeed the height of sanctimony


Dec 22, 2021

The writer is an

economist, anchor,

analyst and the

President of all

 Pakistan Private

Schools’ Federation


As Joe Biden called his Conference on Democracy and warned that soil erosion represents the greatest challenge of our time. Biden’s special democratic summit is disappointing in accepting certain countries and excluding others, the US has squandered the opportunity to unite the world, at least ideologically, against China and Russia.

According to the Department of State, the purpose is to provide leaders with a platform for declaring individual commitments and collections, reforms, and programs to protect democracy and human rights at home and abroad. The online forum, it says, will ask for bold, possible ideas on themes to protect authorization, fight corruption, and promote respect for human rights.

Having recently left Afghanistan due to famine, and is now completing a $ 650 million arms deal in Saudi Arabia, President Joe Biden thought it would be a good idea to hold a two-day democratic rally, where some of the worst criminals could be convicted. supporters of freedom and issued homilies about how to save the world for those like them. However, controversy over the list of participating countries, coupled with the perception that the United States is an unqualified host, has coincided with the event. Delegates from South Asia testify that the functioning of democracy is not the only status quo in the conference. The White House has invited four South Asian countries to the Democracy Conference: India, the Maldives, Nepal, and Pakistan. But Pakistan refuses to attend while Modi receives specialized treatment. Pakistan has not been free to participate in the summit which excludes China and Russia and includes Taiwan. Pakistan’s prime minister, Imran Khan, has said his country has no intention of joining a political party. The world suffered greatly as a result of the Cold War, he said, and Pakistan did not want the imprisonment of young people. Either way, the decision not to go will play well with the Pakistani community.

These unusual connections are probably part of an effort to win separate countries and increase Chinese influence. While India, the Maldives, and Nepal may enjoy attending a U.S.-led democracy conference, they will not be comfortable using the recommendations from it. Another problem is geopolitics: Because the White House ousted China but invited Taiwan, the event will visualize the U.S.-China conflict. The smaller provinces of South Asia, which have already participated in the India-China tournament, may not want to come close to a conference that is being considered as an anti-China initiative – especially as the Chinese alliance Pakistan is not. The Biden administration did not provide details on how to select the countries but seemed to invite South Asian provinces to better serve their current interests. More than 100 countries have been invited to take part in the conference, most of which represent strong democracy. But the guest list also has many leaders responsible for driving the democratic recession that led to the conference from the beginning, including Narendra Modi of India, Jair Bolsonaro of Brazil, and Rodrigo Duterte of the Philippines. Together, they have led other countries that have seen a dramatic decline in democracy. Indeed, more than a quarter of the countries on the conference list were considered partially free in the recent ‘Freedom on Earth report’. Angola, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and Iraq are also not considered completely free.

Diplomacy alone cannot save democracy. Domestic actors, not international conferences, conduct democracy.

No matter how much the White House talks about democracy, the rally is actually about creating an alliance against China and Russia. Think of a QUAD alliance, but at an industrial level. No matter which countries are participating in the conference or how advanced they are in the democratic process, preventing and reversing the global erosion of democracy will not be easy for diplomacy to deal with on its own. Democracy is a process that usually takes place in countries, not within them. Some of the worst threats to democracy are internal: distrust, segregation, voter oppression, and coalition institutions. Political pressure can promote and encourage democratic processes, but it is not something that pushes democracy forward. Domestic and movement actors play a key role in defending — or undermining — democracy. And for good reason: The foundations of a healthy democracy, including access to voting and civil liberties, are mostly domestic issues. Poor access to public services, increasing inequality, and declining material prosperity can also lead to a decline in democracy. Specific actors, including political founders, civil society organizations, the media, and the private sector, have a greater responsibility to protect democracy.

The role of foreign governments and international institutions in promoting democracy is largely limited to supporting the public and, where appropriate, financial and trade financing depends on the outcomes of democracy. While international cooperation may complement domestic efforts, it is not enough to establish a strong and genuine domestic movement to hold people and institutions accountable to the laws and principles of democracy. Technology is an important ingredient in a combination of tools that can have a positive effect. To protect and maintain democracy, there is a real need for what the US has been doing at home to protect it. Somehow, the Biden conference looks at this fact. The questionable American authority on the matter was not lost on the Biden administration, who approached the conference from a humble position. Over the past year alone, 19 U.S. states have enacted laws that make it harder for Americans to vote.

Another challenge at the conference was the full narrative that the problem of democracy is natural and focused on the competition between democracies and dictatorial regions, rather than the internal conflict between the states themselves. With previous reforms, and the threats posed by disgruntled foreign actors, democracies risk exposing the hidden threats that reside within, in the form of growing divisions, inequalities, and mistrust in the view that democracy can serve the needs of the people. Indeed the threats of democracy are much smaller in democratic positions than the power of democracy to make systems work. We note that although external threats such as disinformation campaigns are real, accepting that is because our systems are not working.

The demise of democracy has flourished worldwide, amid rising inequalities and a sense of powerlessness among voters. As people lose confidence in their political systems, they are increasingly attracted to the indifferent, even demeaning, democratic institutions. Not surprisingly, 85% of Americans now say that their political system should change. They are deeply ashamed of their ruling structures, and it is not because China and Russia have promised a better alternative and that they have conspired to undermine the credibility of democracy. It is because of what the democratic governments have done for themselves. Globally, the proportion of people who say they are dissatisfied with democracy has risen from 47.9% in the mid-1990s to 57.5% — the highest level of dissatisfaction with democracy in history, according to a Cambridge University-based study. more than 4 million people in 154 countries.

The democratic conference was a major pledge of a campaign by President Biden who said he wanted to hold such an event to prevent the demise of democracy by strengthening human rights and fundamental freedoms around the world. The event became a hot topic after Russia and China were not invited to the event, making it an American attempt to stop China. Clearly, strategic considerations against China are effective in inviting troubled, deteriorating democracies such as India and the Philippines located in China, which reflected Washington’s attitude toward the Cold War. The US had given itself the power to define who the ‘democratic country’ was and who was not. Joe Biden’s Democrat Conference is heightened hypocrisy. Diplomacy alone cannot save democracy. Domestic actors, not international conferences, conduct democracy.

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