Washington elites are deeply mistaken if they believe that American values are perceived in other countries better than China’s foreign policy.
Despite the growing tension in relations between the US and China, they do not pose a real threat to each other’s sovereignty, writes the American edition of Foreign Policy. It’s just that the two powers are too big. Moreover, both countries possess nuclear weapons, which impose severe restrictions on the ability of any state to enforce another. As a result, attempts to impose their own political ideology on each other are also pointless.
China today prefers a world order based on territorial sovereignty and non-interference, in which each country has the right to choose its own approach, even if in this way it exalts national interests over human rights.
In contrast, the United States has long promoted a world order that favors liberal values based on the fact that all people have certain inalienable rights. Such principles are central to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and are enshrined in the North Atlantic Treaty and other structures led by the United States.
“Of course, neither the US nor China is in line with these regulatory declarations. Despite China’s claims that it never interferes in the internal affairs of other countries, Beijing, in fact, was ready to do just that on a number of occasions. Likewise, while US leaders love to extol their deep commitment to freedom, democracy and fundamental human rights, they ignore the illiberal behavior of key allies. Even on its territory, the United States was unable to fully realize these ideals”, – the article says.
Given the above, the key question is which system will win in the end? Economic success will be fundamental here, as it inspires others to emulate, writes FP. However, the appeal of the ideas themselves also needs to be considered: Will US liberal norms be more interesting to others than China’s defense of national sovereignty, its emphasis on non-interference and insistence that countries can develop political institutions that match their culture and historical experience?
Stephen M. Walt, professor at Harvard University
“Americans may be accustomed to thinking that the ‘arc of history strives for justice’ and the ideals of freedom are doomed to triumph, even if they take many decades to be fully realized. And they could no doubt point to the history of the past four centuries to support this belief. But it would be wise not to assume this, because China’s preferred ruleset is likely to prove attractive in many places”.
Foreign Policy reminds that today the number of countries that do not correspond to Western democratic norms is in the majority. All of them are more likely to prefer a world order that gives them the right to determine their own system of government, and outside forces have no right to pressure them because of this. Even China’s financial assistance does not provide for the internal reforms that American lending programs require.
In addition, as China grows in power, other governments will be less worried about being overthrown. The Chinese rhetoric of “live and let live” can even reassure states that do not share the PRC’s policies.
Finally, Beijing’s position is less vulnerable to accusations of hypocrisy. The proclamation that all states should be allowed to develop as they see fit gives him the opportunity to deal with democracies, military dictatorships and monarchies. The United States looks two-faced in this sense, proclaiming liberal principles, but continuing to support close allies who regularly violate these ideals.Expert says Nord Stream-2 is more profitable for Europe than gas transit through Ukraine