BY DHANA CHANDRA SHRESTHA
We all know the United States of America is the most powerful state in the world. It has a huge nuclear armament, it has a huge economy and it has a huge army. It is also true that many American soldiers have contributed greatly in fighting for its allies in both the First World War, the Second World War, in the Korean War and in many other countries which it felt their help was necessary. So I thought that the Americans had the right to hold their head high in whichever part of the world they were in.
But I am not so sure now. Specially of their priorities in democracy, human rights and freedom of press among others. I have been disillusioned not only by American diplomats whom I met here in Kathmandu, but also by American policies, specially that have come forth during President Donald Trump’s time. This man actually has no background in American politics, but like I have written so many times in the past, American presidents are not elected by the public but by some people in a dark room who we or the world really don’t know about.
At least late Ronald Reagan, though he was an actor in Hollywood earlier, had a long stint as a governor and also contested a losing presidential election before he became elected to office in the Eighties. But Trump has no such credentials. Like mentioned by a writer in an English daily recently, he was just a mere real estate agent. How he became President is flabbergasting and also a clue of how American politics works. At least here in Nepal a person has to be elected by the people and pushed ahead by the party he belongs to, before he can be the prime minister, but in the US, the so called oldest democracy in the world, which gave voting rights to women only in the Nineteen Twenties, no woman has become a president. We have a woman president now. This should give a lesson to the “oldest Democratic nation”.
But what is more worrying now is that this oldest democracy in the world is trying to act like an autocratic country. It even had the cell phone of Angela Merkel the President of a close ally like Germany tapped. What it did not know was that one of its closest friends, Israel, tapped the phone of many top American officials.
Late President Ronald Reagan also offended a lot of countries, specially Islamic states and naturally the then Soviet Union as well. Jimmy Carter was a weak president who now preaches about peace in many parts of the world, but who could not rescue his own American diplomats when the hard core Islamist took over Iran from a pretty liberal monarch, who had been termed as the ”Policeman of the Persian Gulf”.
Donald Trump is too trying to be like Reagan, but he has made too many enemies, including American allies in Western Europe and even Central America, besides some nations in Asia. Where will this get him? He should not forget that a popular president like John F. Kennedy was allegedly killed by an American for his heroic actions, including the one when he made a warning to Cuba. Now some sort of a friend of America. Reagan was shot by another American, though he survived and his quote to his wife Nancy Reagan was “Sorry I forgot to duck honey” is still famous. When I was in Washington DC, a friend from the prestigious Washington Post told me she would show me the place which most tourist do not see and she showed me the back entrance of the hotel from which Reagan had emerged before he was shot.
Like I have said before, I am a student of history, and I remember experts saying that Hitler lost the Second World War because he started wars on too many fronts. President Trump also seems to have opened wars on too many fronts, specially by confronting China, the second largest economy of the world and with perhaps a military strength bigger than that of the heroic America we remember.
President Trump has shown his volatile and temperamental attitude by changing many of his close aides including even a secretary of state. Why does he do so? This is not a real estate deal, this is America, the strongest nation in the world which he is leading due to some chance or due to some internal decisions by the backroom players. So like told by the author in an English daily, Trump should not only blow his own trumpet, but concentrate in giving good governance to his own country first and not intervene in other countries or in the work of his own official staff. Other countries will look after themselves, specially if there is no foreign intervention, he should realize he is now a president, that also of the strongest nation of the world not a small time estate dealer haggling with some owner of a squatter’s land. So Trump, once again, don’t blow your trumpet only!
Trump, don’t blow your own trumpet
BY DHANA CHANDRA SHRESTHA