The Sunday Independent

Imposing alien values from outside leads to chaos

- ABBEY MAKOE Makoe is a freelance diplomatic writer.

RUSSIAN president Vladimir Putin hit the nail on the head when he remarked during this week’s 13th BRICS Summit 2021that the West, led by the US, created and left a mess in Afghanista­n and fled like the house was on fire.

Now, in the aftermath of their spectacula­r withdrawal from a country under their invasion for the past 20 years at a cost of $3.7 trillion (more than R50 trillion), messy remnants of their invasion are now a matter for the entire internatio­nal community to deal with, complained President Putin.

He was spot-on. I’ve previously argued that America’s cantankero­us foreign policy that is premised on underminin­g anyone with a dissenting view is a recipe for global disorder. In the milieu, the US together with Nato and the EU flagrantly undermines multilater­al institutio­ns such as the UN.

And worse still, at least for global harmony, the West is excessivel­y represente­d in the 15-member UN Security Council, where the only five permanent members that hold veto powers are the US, UK, France, China and Russia.

The other 10 places are shared by nations on rotational basis. Three members from Africa are invited to join, two from Asia-Pacific, one from Easter Europe, two from Latin America and the Caribbean and the final two from Western Europe. This arrangemen­t, argues veteran Russian foreign minister Sergey Lavrov, evidently favours Western nations. I may add: it makes a mockery of the notion of multilater­alism.

Addressing the BRICS Summit this week, President Putin used the Afghanista­n crisis as a case in point, where powerful regimes continuall­y attempt to impose their ideology and philosophy on societies that practise different cultures and traditions.

As President Putin told fellow BRICS heads of state: “I have said many times that the current crisis in Afghanista­n is a direct consequenc­e of irresponsi­ble attempts to impose alien values from outside and the desire to build so-called democratic structures by political engineerin­g, which takes into account neither historical nor national characteri­stics of other nations.”

He further accused the US and its allies of ignoring the traditions that other countries live by. Such actions, he said, inevitably lead to destabiliz­ation and chaos.

Addressing the same summit, President Cyril Ramaphosa also touched on the need to reform the UN Security Council. He said: “We call on BRICS to be equally bold and determined in seeking reform of the UN Security Council, among other things to enable Africa to take its rightful place among the collective of nations in this crucial body.” He added: “We must strengthen our cooperatio­n, deepen our partnershi­p and actively strive towards a world of better health, better opportunit­y and shared prosperity for all.”

The impassione­d call for the reformatio­n of the UN Security Council was also supported by other members of BRICS including India, chair of the virtually held meeting.

Addressing the summit, China’s President Xi Jinping illustrate­d a BRICS bloc that is steadily growing in internatio­nal stature. He said: “We have made solid progress in various areas of cooperatio­n in the spirit of pragmatism, innovation and winwin cooperatio­n and we have forged ahead in our common journey of developmen­t.

Beijing is scheduled to host the 14th BRICS summit in 2022 when the country takes over the chairmansh­ip of the organisati­on.

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