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Xinhua Commentaries: “Exposing the Three Major Political Deficits of the U.S.”

{Editor’s Note: On each of the three consecutive days March 17th through March 19th, Xinhua News Agency published a commentary criticizing the U.S. from angles of ideology, image, and leadership, respectively. On March 20th, Xinhua published a summary article with highlights from the prior three articles. The following is a translation of the summary article. [1]}

March 20, 2024

The so-called Third “Democracy Summit” organized by the United States was held in South Korea from March 18th to 20th. However, twenty-one years ago, on March 20th, the U.S. invaded Iraq; and to this day the Iraqi people are still suffering the consequences of “exported American-style democracy.” While chanting slogans such as “freedom,” “democracy,” and “rules-based international order,” the United States is in reality dividing the international community and maintaining hegemony in the name of democracy.

“American-style democracy,” which is not worthy of its name, lost its credibility long ago. The U.S. prioritizes its own interests above those of the world, not hesitating to provoke conflicts and hatred so as to maintain its hegemonic order and undermine global cooperation. The U.S. has repeatedly defied the historical trend of global peace and development. As a result it has developed severe deficits in its ideology, image, and leadership, truly becoming a “deficit empire.”

“Ideological Deficit”: Bipolar Confrontation Leads to No Way Out

{Editor’s Note: the term “bipolar” here refers to the idea that power in the international system is concentrated at two poles (China and the U.S.) rather than being unipolar or multipolar.}

The global loss of credibility of the United States stems from the inherent defects of the capitalist system itself and the decline of its ideology. Selfishness, bipolar confrontation, and arrogance have prevented this superpower from breaking away from its demonic ideas of “America First” and “American exceptionalism.” They have caused [the U.S.] to resist the trend of global, mutual development. Is the U.S. truly able to provide advanced ideas to lead the development of humankind in this era?

The extreme selfishness of “America First” runs counter to the trend of win-win cooperation seen in the globalized era. American political elites are not interested in enlarging the cake of mutual development. Rather, they are interested in wooing a few countries to form small groups so as to control and suppress competitors, using means such as “decoupling,” technological blockades, indiscriminate sanctions, and economic coercion.

Such bipolar “friend or foe” thinking is incompatible with the pursuit of peaceful development in a multipolar world. From its direction of the Cold-War “freedom from dictatorship” drama, to its concoction of today’s phony “democracy against authoritarianism” narrative, the U.S. has been unable to escape the ideological shackles of its Cold War mentality and zero-sum thinking.

Such self-centered arrogance leads the U.S. to declare a “clash of civilizations,” which is fundamentally at odds with history’s current of multipolar development and peaceful coexistence. The U.S. considers itself “God’s chosen people” and always regards Western “liberal democracy” as the only model for modern civilization, fantasizing about global “uniformity” through American-style ideological “assimilation.” But history is now demonstrating that human civilization can only thrive through harmonious coexistence and mutual development. Pursuing unilateralism and a unipolar world, forcefully promoting one civilization, one path, and one model — this will only lead the world into the pain of conflict and the agony of exhaustion.

For the full text, please read: “Xinhua Commentary | Bipolar Confrontation Leads to No Way Out – Exposing the ‘Ideological Deficit’ in American Politics.” [2]

“Image deficit”: When Saying One Thing And Doing Another, One Cannot Foster Trust

For many years, the United States has whitewashed itself with titles such as “the beacon of democracy,” “the guardian of human rights,” “the melting pot of races,” etc. American politicians, armed with these slogans, mobilize propaganda tools to sell American values ​​everywhere. However, the U.S., which speaks well but acts badly, cannot gain others’ trust. Its constructed “good image” has been repeatedly exposed as a facade.

The U.S. claims to be a “model of democracy,” but such “American-style democracy” has left the following “spectacles” to the world: thousands of people’s besieging Capitol Hill, George Floyd’s tragic cry of “I can’t breathe” before his death, and Iraqis’ weeping due to the traumas of the U.S. war… Inherent problems with American-style democracy abound, yet American politicians are keen to “promote democracy” worldwide, bringing chaos and disaster to many countries.

The U.S. flaunts itself as a “defender of human rights,” but its domestic human rights situation continues to deteriorate. It has deployed troops to Afghanistan, invaded Iraq, bombed Syria, and imposed sanctions on Cuba, Iran, and other countries for decades. The U.S. has repeatedly committed serious human rights violations such as torture and assassination. Since the outbreak of a new round in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in October of last year, the U.S. has repeatedly obstructed the United Nations Security Council from passing resolutions on a ceasefire. The international community has increasingly recognized the hypocrisy of the U.S.’ “human rights advocacy.”

The “image deficit” of the U.S. is also reflected in the lip service paid to maintaining “the rule-based international order.” In reality, it seeks selfish gains through use of its own “home rules,” applies international rules selectively based on its needs, and engages in pseudo-multilateralism and group politics.

For the full text, please read: “Xinhua Commentary | When Saying One Thing And Doing Another, One Cannot Foster Trust – Exposing the ‘Image Deficit’ in American Politics.” [3]

“Leadership deficit”: Hegemonic logic leaves no room for a rules-based order

In the current, rapidly-accelerating evolution of the world, the U.S. still clings to an anachronistic, hegemonic logic. It indulges itself in the unrealistic delusion that it is “leading” the world, satisfying its ego by living in a beautiful fantasy land. Little does it know that the international community is increasingly realizing that the U.S. is undeserving of its self-proclaimed “leading position” and that its global leadership has incurred significant deficits.

The U.S.’ leadership deficit lies in its failure to shoulder the responsibilities of a major power and demonstrate its role as a major player in times of crisis. Faced with global crises, the U.S. does not only shirk responsibilities and evade obligations; it also follows its own selfish interests to obstructs the formation of global concerted efforts [to address such crises]. It fails to deliver the contribution that a “leader” should, and it fails to meet international expectations.

The U.S.’ leadership deficit lies in its prioritization of “interests” over “justice,” intending to drag the world into a contest over existing [limited] resources rather than promoting the mutual development and increasing the prosperity of all countries. Currently, the world economy is weak and fragile, and many problems require the joint efforts of all countries. However, the U.S. stubbornly adheres to “selfishness,” using hegemony to prioritize national interests over global interests, shifting its domestic confrontations and risks to the entire world. Such “leadership” is not only morally lacking but also harms others in the long run.

The U.S.’ leadership deficit also lies in its inability and unwillingness to promote and lead the reform of global governance systems and the international order. To this day, U.S. officials and scholars still shamelessly boast that the world would descend into chaos if not for the leadership of the U.S. However, the reality is that more and more countries are courageously saying no to the U.S.’ “leadership.” They are calling for the establishment of global governance systems and a more just and reasonable international order, aiming for wholistic global development.

For the full text, please read: “Xinhua Commentary | Hegemonic Logic Leaves No Room for a Rules-Based Order – Exposing the ‘Leadership Deficit’ in American Politics.” [4]

[1] Xinhua, “Xinhua News Agency Exposes the ‘Three Major Deficits’ of the American Politics,” March 20, 2024.
[2] Xinhua, “Xinhua Commentary | Bipolar Confrontation Leads to No Way Out – Exposing the ‘Ideological Deficit’ in American Politics,” March 17, 2024.
[3] Xinhua, “Xinhua Commentary | When Saying One Thing And Doing Another, One Cannot Foster Trust – Exposing the ‘Image Deficit’ in American Politics,” March 18, 2024.
[4] Xinhua, “Xinhua Commentary | Hegemonic Logic Leaves No Room for a Rules-Based Order – Exposing the ‘Leadership Deficit’ in American Politics,” March 19, 2024.