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American exceptionalism argument harmful to the world

(People's Daily)    09:05, May 30, 2019

Some American politicians like adopting double standards in international affairs and are obsessed with the so-called American exceptionalism. In their eyes, the US should always live above the rules, believing the rules are made for others to obey and have nothing to do with the Americans themselves.

For some time, these US politicians talked a lot of nonsense about trade, debt, rules and human rights under double standards, exposing illogicality and an arrogant attitude.

The US is to date the most unruly member of the World Trade Organization (WTO). However, these US politicians have confused right and wrong, accusing China of undermining the WTO rules.

It was because of the US who opposed the concept of climate change in the joint text that the 11th Arctic Council Ministerial Meeting failed to formulate a customary joint declaration for the first time in the last 20 years.

However, the US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo distorted the truth by warning the Arctic nations of possible influence from China and Russia.

It revealed nothing but Washington's rude and unreasonable above-the-rule position. But such mentality is only an illusion of the US who likes to demand everything from others.

The essence of American exceptionalism is a theory of civilization superiority, i.e., the US is different from any other countries and it is "destined to be great and lead the world."

For instance, Washington has long regarded Latin American countries as its "backyard" and concocted the notorious Monroe Doctrine, exerting pressure, posing threats and even subverting the political power of these countries. Such conducts have resulted in chaos of Latin America.

In addition, the so-called democracy exported by the US to some countries only brought social division and ethnic opposition. History has proven that American exceptionalism is not only illusory but also extremely harmful.

The root cause for some American politicians to fearlessly and brazenly engage in American exceptionalism is their hegemonic thinking. To justify their conducts, they racked their brains to concoct lies and find all kinds of excuses. But what they've done was in essence suppressing the legitimate development rights of other countries and using political tools to interfere with the latter’s economic activities. This is exactly hegemony.

Painting Huawei as a long-term national security threat of Washington, Pompeo coerced and induced governments of various countries to reject Huawei. What he has done was precisely sabotaging market rules and standards of international trade paraded by the US itself.

Pompeo belongs to a cold war generation that, despite mounting evidence of relative US decline, clings to delusional myths of American exceptionalism and US hegemony, The Guardian pointed out bluntly.

Any tricky magic will be seen through, let alone the words and deeds of the American politicians which are full of loopholes. The double standards adopted by these people have long been seen through by the international society and become a laughing stock.

Asad Umar, chairman of Pakistan's National Assembly Standing Committee on Finance refuted the "debt trap" charges against China raised by US Vice President Mike Pence, saying what the US official said is blatant hypocrisy, designed simply to malign China. "Why is investment from any other part of the world a good thing, but from China, it turns evil?" Asad Umar asked.

While raising demands for others, the US should abide by the rules itself, said US former Secretary of Treasury Jacob Lew.

As the interconnections between countries are becoming increasingly close, countries all over the world need to enhance rule consciousness at all times, and jointly cope with the risks and challenges faced by human society through cooperation.

Some politicians in the US have no right to maintain their dominant position at the expense of the legitimate interests of other countries, and it is even more impossible for the US to become great again through acting immorally and recklessly.

To pursue double standards and engage in American exceptionalism is to deliberately undermine international rules and seriously impact stability of the international relation system.

When the interests of all countries are closely intertwined and their fates closely related, the American exceptionalism argument is likely to turn the US into a villain in the 21st century, said Jeffrey Sachs, an economist professor at Columbia University, said. Facts speak louder than words. Any country that violates internationally recognized rules and standards will only end up hurting itself.

(Zhong Sheng is a pen name often used by People's Daily to express its views on foreign policy.) 

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Web editor: Hongyu, Bianji)

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