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  1. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by si0001:
    I would say most if not all countries do and say what is in the best interests of their own country than the rights of some remote region in China.
    True, and yet still many democracies will pay at least lip service to events taking place far from their borders. They certainly did even more for places like Libya and the former Yugoslavia, whatever we think about the results. Should the fact that their commercial interests are now threatened be cause to reflect on whether they should have allowed China to join the global trading system and get wealthy only to use its clout in this way?

    Anyway realpolitik is certainly uppermost on the minds of most statesmen. I don't think values has a worth of 0 though.
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  2. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by AsianXpat0:
    True, and yet still many democracies will pay at least lip service to events taking place far from their borders. They certainly did even more for places like Libya and the former Yugoslavia, whatever we think about the results. Should the fact that their commercial interests are now threatened be cause to reflect on whether they should have allowed China to join the global trading system and get wealthy only to use its clout in this way?

    Anyway realpolitik is certainly uppermost on the minds of most statesmen. I don't think values has a worth of 0 though.
    Most countries look after their own self-interest as priority. That is true. But that does not mean realism and liberal values have to always contradict and conflict with one and another. They can in fact compliment and assist each other in some cases.

    As critics like to point out, the US is a hypocrite when it comes to promoting democracy and freedom. It choose to overlook some blatant human rights violations with some of its allies (i.e. Saudi Arabia, Egypt etc) while selectively attacking those which the US deem to be a threat (i.e. Iran, China). But that does not mean advancing human rights and freedoms is neutered as a result. US policy can serve both geopolitical ends (i.e. trying to contain China) and also serve human rights purpose (the HK act).

    Furthermore, values are not irrelevant as some critics alleged. For example, why is it that democratic countries are far less likely likely to engage in armed conflict with one another than with authoritarian states? Why do Canada and Australia not go to war with each other? Or the EU against America? Because they share a common foundation of respect for fundamental rights with a representive and accountable government. That means their electorate is not likely to approve going to war against a fellow democratic state because that can harm the freedom and well-being of citizens of that other state. Fundamentally, democratic states believe their difference and disputes can be settled peacefully without recourse to armed conflict.

    Not so with non-liberal states. Both the USSR and Maoist China were communist states, but for the latter half of the Cold War, relations got so bad between Moscow and Beijing that they were often on the verge of all-out war, with armed clashes breaking out on occasion. Both being communist did not help.

    So having a shared basis in liberal values do serve to deter armed violence between states.
    Last edited by Coolboy; 16-12-2019 at 05:14 PM.
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  3. #13

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    Erm.... would the US not be the country with the most wars/armed conflicts in recent history? You could argue they don't wage war on democratic countries because they are more often part of NATO or some other group which means you can't attack them willy nilly as you can against other countries like Iraq.


  4. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by si0001:
    Erm.... would the US not be the country with the most wars/armed conflicts in recent history? You could argue they don't wage war on democratic countries because they are more often part of NATO or some other group which means you can't attack them willy nilly as you can against other countries like Iraq.
    Most wars and armed conflicts? Certainly some of the wars US were involved in were questionable at best (i.e. Vietnam) or engaged on fictious pretense (i.e. 2003 Iraq War). But how do you define that by "recent" history? Look at the Romans and the Greeks under Alexander the Great. They engaged in far more conflicts than US. And if you ask states who have no particular love for the Trump administration, like the Europeans, Canada or Mexico, if they have to choose between the US and China, who would they choose? The answer would be the US, despite Trump. And why are they part of NATO? Because they have shared interest and values. Because of this, the EU is not seen as a military threat to the US.

    It's not wars, it's values.
    Last edited by Coolboy; 17-12-2019 at 06:03 PM.
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  5. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by Coolboy:
    Most wars and armed conflicts? Certainly some of the wars US were involved in were questionable at best (i.e. Vietnam) or engaged on fictious pretense (i.e. 2003 Iraq War). But how do you define that by "recent" history? Look at the Romans and the Greeks under Alexander the Great. They engaged in far more conflicts than US. And if you ask states who have no particular love for the Trump administration, like the Europeans, Canada or Mexico, if they have to choose between the US and China, who would they choose? The answer would be the US, despite Trump. And why are they part of NATO? Because they have shared interest and values. Because of this, the EU is not seen as a military threat to the US.

    It's not wars, it's values.
    Need to add that in a unipolar world with America acting as global policeman, obviously they would have a higher probability of involvement in whatever conflict was taking place simply because they have the capability of force projection. If you were a warlike tribe somewhere in Africa or the Amazon, it might be less the restrain on desire to cause conflict than the ability to do so. Which as you say, is a separate question from whether their involvement or the results were desirable in every case, but for example, Gulf War 1 with its limited aims and result of restoring Kuwaiti sovereignty were laudable, even if Gulf War 2 was not as well-premised and concluded.
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  8. #18
    One of the many reasons Carrie Lam's husband looked so depressed in Macau IMO, surrounded by degenerates and psychopath's.
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  9. #19

  10. #20

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    As ever, life imitates art...

    https://youtu.be/Tu0pv-hkNPc


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