Deception, trickery and lies characterize international politics. Nations defend their individual stand based on their interests. They do not, oftentimes, consider the interest of others. This regularly results into conflict of interest. As a matter of fact, therefore, one of the signposts of international relations, which is that nations do not have permanent friends but permanent interest, needs re-definition and re-visiting.
In the present plane of global politics as vividly seen in Iraq and North Korea, the United States, the lone super-power, is and has been playing an un-level game. The United States government invaded Iraq under the pretense of Iraq possessing Weapons of Mass Destruction which has thus far been proved to be false and misjudged. It is both false and misjudged because Iraq has no W.M.D. and misjudged because it did not pose a potential danger to America.
Ever since the war, many innocent Iraqi’s have been misplaced and thousands dead yet the acclaimed leader who put the Iraqi people into this state of denial, on the one hand, and state of emergency, on the other, is still breathing. A smokescreen democracy has been installed. Yet this fashion of democracy has not brought harmony and peaceful co-existence to the Iraqi’s. Evidence abound that Iraqi’s are no better today than they were under Saddam Hussein’s regime. Many Iraqi’s, as we are told, are happy Saddam is ousted but they still ask what American’s are still doing there. The presence of American soldiers is seen as bad luck to ordinary Iraqi’s and thus increases insurgent attacks. The simple logic is this: if Iraqi’s are glad that democracy is instituted, that Saddam is removed then they should be glad providing information to American intelligence i.e. of where these insurgents live and are surging out from.
This present American government should admit mistakes made at the start of Iraqi invasion. These mistakes include: disbanding Iraqi army, poor intelligence, deployment of less number of soldiers, and playing politics with the truth. Acceptance of these mistakes will pull the country together and everybody will forge ahead in unison.
The attack on Iraq was premeditated. Many people across the globe see it as a revenge mission. It will be recalled that Bush 41st did not accomplish his goals during his administration so Bush 43rd deemed it right to do what his father didn’t achieve. Another interest pursued in the invasion of Iraq is the American control of Iraqi oil. There is no gainsaying the fact that this is the core of the invasion but backed up with other reasons, as adduced above. Sometimes personal interests and corporate goals are defined as national interests.
Isolationism has been the foreign policy of this present American government. This administration has refused bilateral talks with Syria, Iran, North Korea et al, describing them as ‘axis of evil’. I believe that if America had engaged Saddam Hussein in some kind of talks before the attack, some kind of agreement would have been reached and Iraqi’s would not have been suffering now. But pride and ego and lack of proper definition of policy sidelined the effort of previous U.S. administration’s at reaching a truce. Though, it is true that past administrations described Saddam as an evil genius.
North Korea is basking now. It’s threat of testing their nukes have been made true. And America’s initial threat of using its military might against North Korea has been soft-pedaled. The choice of diplomacy over military action may be because of the following reasons: America cannot go it unilaterally any longer, inadequate manpower to fight the war because they have been over-stretched in Afghanistan and Iraq, and the opposition posed by some distinguished and patriotic Americans. If not that some politicians on both sides of the isle prevailed, this administration would not have relaxed on using its military power to subdue North Koreans threat.
American national interest is in the oil of nations. If it is not, why have they not intervened in Darfur? If it is not, why have they not attacked North Korea? If North Korea were to be Venezuela, America would have attacked her. But America will not attack Venezuela because Iran and Russia will support president Chavez of Venezuela. And America does not want to risk its hold on the global policing and hegemony.
In international politics, there is no level playing field. The dependency theory will always prevail. Power politics will equally prevail. The powerful nations will continue to subdue and overshadow the growth of lesser-powered nations. The interest of powerful nations-powerful militarily and economically- will dwarf that of the less powerful. And when a nation fights to maintain and sustain its global hegemony friction and disagreement and resentments bubble. The present administration of America is clogged in this wheel.
What is the way forward? The policy of engagement must be pursued. Bilateral talks should resume. Professionals in foreign policy and decision making should be employed. The pursuit of non-state actors’ interest disguised as national interest must be addressed-and urgently. If attention is not paid to the later then America should be preparing its casket. This is so because America’s superpower will be destroyed. To say the least, it is on its brink of been dismantled. Right now, many nations are aware of the fact that American military could be stretched out by engaging them in so many wars. And also, many nations are aware that America is, after all, not financially buoyant. As it is, America borrows and had borrowed trillions of dollars from China and Japan, to mention just two, to finance the war in Iraq and Afghanistan. To add, many nations know that America is not that superior in technology. And finally, many nations know that Americans are divided.
These factors if not corrected will lead to American super-power myth been dismantled and destroyed.
These are not times for tough talks and rhetorical show offs. These are not times to drive off the cliff, too. All these hamper diplomacy and international relations.
America should remember that as their pride is at stake so is other nations’. Constructive and constant dialogue should be encouraged at all times. It does not qualify a country to be weak or feminine.