DISRUPTION TO INTERNATIONAL ORDER
With its great power, the United States has been using "American exceptionalism" as the theoretical basis to wantonly trample on international relations.
While requiring other countries to abide by the rules-based international order, it has long put its own interests above the international system with the UN at its core and above the international order underpinned by international law.
Although the United States led the establishment of international systems and rules for global political and economic governance after World War II, the country has habitually broken rules and withdrawn from international organizations as long as they do not satisfy U.S. requirements. Since the 1980s, the United States has refused to ratify or unilaterally withdrawn from many international treaties and organizations, such as the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea, the World Conference against Racism, and the Kyoto Protocol.
The Trump administration was particularly willful, under which the United States withdrew from more than 10 international organizations and agreements in four years, such as the UN Human Rights Council, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, and the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty.
The United States has been the only country to oppose the negotiation on a verification protocol to the Biological Weapons Convention, hindering the efforts of the international community to verify biological activities in various countries, and becoming a stumbling block to biological arms control.
The United States has not only frequently withdrawn from international groups, but also punished any group that dared to challenge it. In 2020, the Trump administration announced that it would impose economic sanctions and travel restrictions on the officials of the International Criminal Court (ICC) involved in the investigation into U.S. actions in the Afghan war -- a move even worse than its earlier refusal to recognize and enforce the ICC's rulings, or to cooperate with the ICC's investigation. This once again showed that the United States would rather destroy "public weapons" if they cannot be used for its private purposes.
The Biden administration has rejoined some international organizations and agreements only to serve its national strategies, and has stayed out of the agreements that it believes would hurt its interests, such as the Open Skies Treaty. As the Biden administration promoted the "selective multilateralism," it has been commented by some European media as "America First 2.0."
In fact, the United States has never shown kindness to other countries, opponents or allies, if they do not serve the U.S. interests. In recent years, the United States has been asking NATO as well as its Asian allies to increase their military spending and pay the United States more "protection fees" for dispatching troops.
Just before Biden's Europe trip in June, it was revealed that the United States had spied on politicians of its European allies, which came as yet another U.S. surveillance scandal after the PRISM Project in 2013. It once again showed the United States has been conducting large-scale cyber surveillance and attacks globally for a long time, and that it, a real empire of hackers, has become the biggest threat to global cybersecurity.
The COVID-19 pandemic is like a magical mirror that has exposed the ugliness of the "America First" policy. The United States has been engaged in unilateralism since the onset of the pandemic: It seized anti-pandemic supplies destined for other countries, issued embargoes on its medical supplies, and bought up production capacity of the drugs that may be used to treat the disease.
Its selfish acts shocked the world and severely damaged global anti-pandemic cooperation. While vaccines have offered hope for the global fight against COVID-19, the United States has upheld "vaccine nationalism," rushing to order and procure vaccines, even those still undergoing clinical trials, and putting some underdeveloped countries and regions in a desperate situation with no access to vaccines.
In the meantime, the United States has been attaching political strings to its vaccine assistance. The Spanish El Mundo website said in an editorial that Washington lent vaccines to Mexico in exchange for a heightened control of the illegal immigrants on the border of Guatemala. U.S. bimonthly magazine Foreign Policy commented on its website that the Biden administration is still pursuing American interests at the expense of the interests of other countries in the world.
The United States has secretly established biological laboratories in many places around the world to carry out biological militarization activities. The mystery of the link between Fort Detrick and the spread of COVID-19 has not yet been cleared up.
Hume Field, a science and policy advisor for China and Southeast Asia of EcoHealth Alliance in New York, said politicizing origins tracing just generates "doubt" and "mistrust," and fundamentally undermines the united global efforts needed to prevail against this virus and this pandemic.
In August, the White House announced that in December Biden will convene leaders from "the world's democracies" at a virtual Summit for Democracy, to be followed "in roughly a year's time by a second, in-person summit."
Ironically, a recent poll commissioned by the Alliance of Democracies Foundation among 50,000 respondents in more than 50 countries has found that nearly half of the respondents see the United States as a threat to democracy.
For a long time, the United States has been identifying itself as a "city upon a hill" and advocating American values such as "democracy, freedom and human rights" as so-called "universal values," and it believes that the United States has the responsibility to promote its values across the globe.
However, such "universal values" in essence are an ideological tool for the United States to maintain global hegemony.
On the one hand, the United States takes advantage of its strong position in the fields of culture and media to forcibly promote American democracy and values in the world, particularly in developing countries. On the other hand, under the guise of the so-called "universal values," the United States attempts to take the moral high ground to manipulate international public opinion, wantonly attack countries and entities that it regards as threats and rivals, and deliberately create divisions and confrontations.
In 2010, marked by the submission of the "National Framework for Strategic Communication" by then U.S. President Barack Obama to U.S. Congress, the national propaganda system led by the U.S. government entered a stage where it became more capable of conducting interagency operations.
In 2014, a report by the Guardian revealed a secret program run by the U.S. Agency for International Development to infiltrate Cuba's hip-hop scene and launch a movement against the Cuban government.
According to the British media outlet, the agency recruited scores of Cuban musicians for projects disguised as cultural initiatives but in actual fact aimed at boosting their visibility and stoking a movement of fans to challenge the government.
The United States has also linked its economic aid to the political system, pressuring African countries into following Western political models through U.S.-led international financial institutions.
Since the 1980s, U.S. presidents have made the promotion of "democratization" in recipient countries a top goal of U.S. foreign aid. But such moves often brought disasters to the recipient countries. Rapid political "democratization" and economic privatization in many African countries led to large-scale political crises and even bloody conflicts, with some countries still in political turmoil today.
The Biden administration has been promoting its idea of "embracing multilateralism again" ever since assuming office, but in practice, it still lingers on the small clique politics, obsessed with ideological differences and wantonly suppressing other countries to serve its own interests in the name of safeguarding "the rules-based international order."
U.S. hegemonic control lies behind the Quad, the Five Eyes intelligence alliance, the Group of Seven, and all other similar cliques, which could in no way represent the international community.
For example, the Biden administration has pulled together Britain, Canada and other allies to repeatedly hype up at the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) their false accusations against China's human rights progress, including the allegation of the so-called "forced labor" in Xinjiang.
Meanwhile, those countries' deplorable history of genocide and cultural extinction, as well as the tragedies of racial discrimination happening nowadays in their own backyards, have been continuously exposed to the general public.
At the 47th session of the UNHRC, more than 90 countries made the appeal for justice, voicing their support for China and saying "no" to anti-China cliques.
U.S. magazine Foreign Affairs said in an article published on July 9 that "From the COVID-19 pandemic to global trade rules, from climate change to economic development, the United States is actively frustrating the priorities of most of the world's democracies. In the process, U.S. foreign policy is -- in the name of democracy -- compounding the global crisis of democracy and delegitimizing U.S. power."
"The world's liberal democracies have lost their monopoly to define what democracy is," Bulgarian political scientist Ivan Krastev said in an opinion piece published on The New York Times in May. Citing a survey conducted by the Pew Research Center a few months earlier, Krastev said a vast majority of Americans "are deeply disappointed with their own political system," and that "some are unconvinced they even still live in a democracy." This is also true for many European countries, the study showed.
Graham Allison, a professor at Harvard University and American political scientist who popularized the term "Thucydides trap," has previously said in an article on Foreign Policy that "Unipolarity is over, and with it the illusion that other nations would simply take their assigned place in a U.S.-led international order."