Meddling in the affairs of others

There is an excellent article by the ex president of South Africa Thabo Mbeki on what went wrong in Cote D’Ivore. In a nutshell he states that the Ivory Coast was not ready for democratic elections due to the political set up in the country at the time.

He states the Ivorians held elections due to international pressure. The elections lead to political factions fighting each other. And the rest is history.

Now this might be true or it might not be. The point that I want to make is that if this were so that would mean the bloodshed and turmoil was due mainly to the interference of the international politicians.

Even if this were not the case and I can’t really comment on the reality of this as I haven’t been following developments in the Ivory Coast that closely, it is most certainly the case in other instances where external interference in a country’s matters has lead to bad outcomes. Worse outcomes than if the country had been left to sort out its own problems.

Of course it is understandable that external parties might want to help out. So to speak. And it is also understood that the West tends to beat itself up about not doing anything to stop the Rwanda genocide for instance. And there are many more atrocities performed by leaders against their own people. Cambodia for instance had the Khmer Rouge, South American nations went through a spate of dictators who outdid themselves in the crimes against their own people. There’s an endless list.

But there are also many instances where the international (read the West) fervour for installing their belief systems on a country has caused more harm than good.

Not every country needs democracy. And yes, this statement in itself can lead to a massive outcry and throwing of rotten eggs at the person who could possibly have this view point.

Vietnam works very well on a non democratic level. So does China. And yes there are some hidden and sometimes not so hidden evils that happen but then there have been some nasties in the USA and the rest of the so called developed world too.

Germany for instance allowed the USA to pick off Muslim citizens in its country after 9/11 if the US suspected they might be terrorists. No due process here. Just a straight forward kidnapping by CIA folk. Off the street in some instances. Tortured and locked up without trial for years. Just because their first name happened to be Muhammed.

This kind of mindless interference reminds me of this kind of scenario. Stoke up an unguarded fire in the fireplace with small kids in the house. The kids burn themselves. Then you spank the kids for going near the fire and burning themselves.

All I’m saying here is that the West should be a lot more cautious before insisting their belief systems are the correct ones and should be adhered to no matter what the circumstances. Bit like Aid. But that’s another story all on its own.