Whilst several countries of the world have waded in to the Ukrainian conflict, the majority of independent nations have sat on their hands and made no contribution at all. We have to ask ourselves; if they are all on one side or the other? Or, are those detached non aligned countries just disinterested?
It seems likely that all countries do not believe that Western democracies are desirable. To our surprise we learn that, maybe, our ideas and ideals are not what everyone is comfortable with, or believes to be the best.
China amongst the fastest and largest economies in the world has a speedily growing middle class. Yes, there were humungous problems with Covid, but nonetheless Chinese influence has grown both economically and influentially more than any other nation over the last twenty years. By any measure, China could be winning, be it influence or political clout.
Are the so called non aligned afraid to join the predominantly Western democracies or do they distrust the Western bloc motives? Do they trust strong one party states more?
China, especially, has over the last several years, particularly under the guidance of Xi, invested widely in the developing world. In Africa and parts of the Asian and South American continents. In contrast the West has made very little effort economically at all. The West has relied on a competitive economic self serving model. The Contrast between the ‘soft power’ of the diminishing British Council versus the investment in the ‘silk road’ is alarmingly apparent.
What the West has done, by contrast, is interfere militarily, with catastrophic consequences. Instead of reinforcing democratic ideals thier policy has led to prolonged chaos, bloodshed and the rise of tyrannical leadership. Only in Vietnam has there been a recovery where totalitarianism has been modified some way toward the Western democratic model.No wonder the degree of trust in Western philosophy has eroded. In these intervening years, China has been investing finacial capital into the non-aligned countries, and when it comes to decesion making, not surprisingly, soft loans beat interventionism, hands down.
Migration is amongst the world’s biggest problems. Mass migration, exacerbated by the Ukrainian crisis, is one of the biggest problems facing the richer Western economies. Almost every Western country has major immigration problems as massive number of the poorest seek a better life amongst the richest.
It is noteworthy that the only countries in the world without immigration problems are the totalitarian regimes. We see very few immigrants trying to access North Korea, we see very few Taiwanese or Hong Kong citizens making the journey to China. The Russian federation has a problem only with people leaving, be they oligarchs or potential young military recruits.
The problem is two pronged, migration and belief system competition. Investment and sharing of wealth hold the secret of world balance. It seems the Chinese have latched on to one side of the coin. Let us hope they are copied by the Western alliance and that military interventionalism is a thing of the past.
Putin, is the prime example of the cross over. He is a one man terrorist with little regard for the individual Russian subject, yet he is manically attached to the idea of the Russian Empire. President Xi is belligerently making noises about reunification with Taiwan. Will the totalitarians not learn from the mistakes of the Western alliance?
We are poised between the mistakes of the past on both sides of the belief systems. There is evidence that neither side has it absolutely right.
It is easy to see what is wrong with killing and brutality in Ukraine, but it is much more difficult to see what’s right with the left and whats wrong with the right. Talking and learning from each other is the key to a peaceful future.