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How ex-Presidents ensured the decline of US power, but Biden acted smart?

Nirendra Dev

Nirendra DevSep 07, 2021, 08:39 AM IST

How ex-Presidents ensured the decline of US power, but Biden acted smart?

The United States is now getting the taste of an increasing blow-back for pursuing bad policies over decades, perhaps at the global stage for American leadership, it all started about three decades back.

 

New Delhi: Joe Biden was perhaps never interested in being called a global leader who oversaw 'nation building' in Afghanistan. Biden has only played his role as a 'good American President. Time will judge this! Now, look at how the United States has lost global respect.

In March 2020, a tiny country, Norway, asked students of the Norwegian University of Science and Technology to return home and counselled: "This applies especially if you are staying in a country with poorly developed health services and infrastructure, for example, the USA."

It did not have faith in Americans; it did not bother that it was playing with the reputation of a superpower. 

Thus, the 'decline' in the US position globally as a world leader started long before the Taliban' win' in Afghanistan in August 2021.

This also shows in today's world, you cannot be a superpower simply because of military strength.

The Afghanistan debacle has done extreme damage to drive home the point that it is high time for the international community to understand that enough is enough. The US is perhaps no longer the real 'leader' of the 'free world' unlike the past.

The United States is now getting the taste of an increasing blow-back for pursuing bad policies over decades.

Perhaps at the global stage for American leadership, it all started about three decades back.

The US leadership had misjudged the role of a 'global leader' or a 'superpower', especially after the disintegration of the Soviet Union.

In the name of promoting democracy and so-called nation-building, they promoted wars, frightful sanctions and pushed some countries to face its bullying tactics. 

One remembers the days when Bill Clinton got embroiled in his running rows over Monica Lewinsky. There came a time when Russian Duma (Parliament) in December 1998 considered a motion appealing to Lewinsky to help halt the American attack on Iraq. Russian lawmaker Alexander Filatov had moved a motion: "The Duma appeals to Ms Lewinsky to undertake corresponding measures to restrain the emotions of Bill Clinton."

To cut a long story short, the whims and fancies of leadership and US Presidents often decided the global fate.

Biden worked as Vice President under Barack Obama, and the duo created conditions that brought miseries in numerous nations, especially across North Africa and the Middle East.

However, in 2021 as President of the US, he might have followed a mistaken road map, but the real goal was never off-the-target.

The war in Afghanistan was frankly not going anywhere, and thus Joe Biden has acted decisively in 'halting' that so-called war.

Biden and his administration have pushed the line that Afghanistan's nation building' was not its real job. Hence, Washington's actions were guided by its sole purpose, the 'national interest'. This school of thought believes so-called ego and prestige issues are not necessarily 'national interest'.

Moreover, the 'Biden blunder' notion might be mostly seen from the prism of Asian players and countries such as Russia. For Biden, what bothered is 'quick withdrawal' as it could save huge investments and precious American lives.

The US lost 2,461 service members, including thirteen at the Kabul airport.

It also spent more than two trillion dollars on warfare that seemed never heading towards an end and dragged on.

By saving these monies, Biden has done a long term service to his nation.

Biden has only played his role as a US President; - maybe his name would never go in the annals of history as a 'reformist global leader' who built up a nation called Afghanistan.

Biden was perhaps never interested. 

But yes, an issue remains; it was never moralistic to abandon Afghanistan the way they did.

But here too, Biden acted as a 'good President' and not necessarily a moralist.

As the commander-in-chief, he has extricated his military from a never-ending conflict. Mission achieved. 

Most of these countries - Russia, Iran and China - were needling the US and wanted American forces to withdraw, but now that this has happened, all these countries will be worried a lot.

Biden knows the world has changed in the last 20 years. Perhaps the challenges from Russia and China are immense and growing.

There is also a latent big-picture Asian optimism that five centuries-long upsurges (syn..) of Western power, colonialism and imperialism would be dying fast, making way for Russia, India and China.

This is why there is much to see what emerges out of the BRICS Summit on September 9, when the RIC member nations would join hands with South Africa and Brazil to discuss things in detail.

 

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