Global Times (5 October 2021) – China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Sunday released a report entitled “The State of Democracy in the United States.” This is the second day in a row that China had publicly stated its views on democracy in response to the US attacks. China’s actions on the eve of the provocative “Summit for Democracy” to be convened by the US have attracted much attention, creating a heated debate over the two countries’ democracies.
It has to be pointed out that the US calling the so-called summit for democracy demonstrates that it has lost confidence in its own political system. The US is feeling the pressure of China’s rapid development. As the comprehensive competitiveness of the US declines relatively, China has become the world’s top trader. Moreover, many US allies and partners have more trade ties with China than they do with the US, therefore the US’ power of global mobilization is likely to be weakened.
Washington is in a hurry to organize a summit that excludes China and Russia to prove its position as the world’s No.1 country and to feel the glory of being able to rally multitudes at its call. This summit will not make any contribution to the US competition with China and Russia, nor will it promote the rapid growth of ideology-based diplomacy on the global stage. That is because economic and social development as well as people’s well-being are some of the most prioritized national interests of most members of the international community. No other country will be deeply so obsessed with how “like-minded” it is with other countries in terms of values and give up the actual interests of achieving economic development, let alone take risks in such an absurd way.
The US itself is unable to make ideology the borderline and lifeline of its national interests. It maintains a good relationship with several Muslim countries in the Middle East and some “non-democratic” countries in East Asia, which is guided by geopolitical considerations. The US is reluctant to decouple from China completely, but it has tried to cut off its ties with China in high-tech sectors. This proves that the US plays the cards of “democracy” and “human rights” to achieve its own interest calculations rather than engaging in a “moral war” with China.
There should not be a monopolistic definition in the world of what democracy is. The US has tried to define the concept of “democracy” and test if China fits the standard, but China will never dance to such a tune and be plunged in the trap the US has set up. The world will only judge which type of democracy works better based on the results, but not on the concept of democracy itself. In other words, it is far more authoritative to compare the results of how different types of democracy work than to argue about the meaning of democracy and then persuade others to buy it.
US democracy was once attractive to the world. The fundamental reason was that it created outstanding prosperity in the 20th century and secured victory in a number of hot and cold wars. Currently, the US democracy is losing its halo and being questioned, the fundamental reason of which is that it has lost the ability to solve domestic major issues. In addition to its failure in tackling the ravaging pandemic, its social division, racial conflicts and the lost control of guns have reached the peak, with no signs of easing. Contrasted with a prosperous China, the US feels frustrated and annoyed.
China’s white paper and the Foreign Ministry report have stated clearly China’s stance and the whole world should have got the messages. What is important is that China’s voice has become louder with the support of the country’s achievements. No matter how grand the US summit is, it cannot hide the country’s predicament as its economic and social development stumbles and its mechanism fails to address major domestic issues. It cannot dilute global doubt over the future of the US-style democracy either. The more the US cannot show the actual achievements of its democracy, the more it bluffs and blusters. The whole world can see this.
How is China’s whole-process democracy faring? Economic and social development has the final say. Washington believes it can define whether China is democratic or authoritarian, but this is just an illusion. As China’s achievements in various fields have put the US in question, Washington’s discourse power is bound to fade away. US-style democracy will only show to the world its rotten part. China is a country with a down-to-earth manner. Let the US toast itself and see how long its rhetoric works to conceal the fake account of US democracy. Both people and history will be the harsh auditors.