Socialism on American Soil

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It’s a whole new world

 

The leftist wave that elected Justin Trudeau as the Prime Minister of Canada last year, made Jeremy Corbyn the leader of the Labour Party of UK is now seeing its third counterpart in the most indispensable nation-Bernie Sanders.

The American nation no matter the indispensable claim-has never been framed by the socialist ideology. Outlining the contours of socialism precisely, throughout the American history finds a weak journey. Tracing the itinerary of socialism in the United States it started out as an anarchist movement, leading to socialism in 1930’s and its eventual decay due to the label of ‘McCarthyism’-the association with communism defeated the ideology further.

 

“The present year has made a comeback – socialism is back in fashion – 30% of American youth finding socialism favourable according to Yougov.poll. Their slogan ‘feel the Bern’ has almost acquired a backing difficult to undermine.”

 

The present year has made a comeback – socialism is back in fashion – 30% of American youth finding socialism favourable according to Yougov.poll. Their slogan ‘feel the Bern’ has almost acquired a backing difficult to undermine. Bernie Sanders describes himself as democratic socialist-someone who urges democracy with the essential juxtaposition of socialism to contour the economic working. Though many critics negate Sanders claim of a democratic socialist, but the initiation of socialism in the American debate is different and is new to the campaign. Sanders is an independent candidate hailing from Vermont whose work with the Democratic Party has given him the position to campaign for the presidential elections of the United States 2016 through the Democratic party. Sanders foreign policy for me being a Pakistani and being an International Relations student has attracted the most attention. He is a vociferous critic of the US invasion of Iraq 2003, he criticizes the Israeli leadership and their atrocities perpetrated on the Palestinian population. But can America actually feel the Bern?

Glass-ceiling-constituting to be an unseen barrier barring the success of women and minorities has been a wave in America. Hillary Clinton the democratic nomination for the presidential race 2016-as the first female president of US would add to other things but would not diversify feminism. The brand of feminism that Clinton promotes targets nothing but the control and supremacy of white women and corporate agenda. Her ideas based on how she has dealt with the foreign policy issues in Latin America as the first lady and secretary of state further transform the issue from feminism to the use of the term. Her stances on Benghazi-the killing of four American consulates in Libya and the scandal surrounding it, her term as the secretary of state have added nothing but to the misery of the American woe. The present struggle to what constitutes as women’s rights has seen nothing but futile efforts from nearly all the significant plethora of nations who theoretically promote women rights but do nothing to implement them. Clinton’s campaign has surrounded the ideas of the usual bizarre American rhetoric that only fits the target of American hegemony over the international arena. What Clinton espouses to be feminist is an all-exclusive policy comprising of the corporate framework. It does not see the issues faced by working class women.

 

“The focus of the American foreign policy has unabatedly continued in only one direction. Adding negotiations to the agenda or only voicing the concern might not change the course of the American foreign policy but still suffices to the apprehensions of the nations affected by it.”

 

Presidential elections or the change of the government have always been important but the presidential elections of the United States hold the primary importance as they strangely influence a common Pakistani. Initially the reluctance that I saw towards the current the presidential elections stemmed from the usual manner through which roughly the foreign policy agenda of all the nominations for the president were nearly the same. But slowly as I grasped the name of Bernie Sanders some things made sense. The ordinary Pakistani in me gained the idea that an American can delineate stances that would place diplomacy and negotiations first and war as the last resort. Someone who would at least voice concerns against Israeli machinery for continuously violating human rights and International Humanitarian Law. Someone who – no matter the capitalist structure – would put the term democratic socialist onto the agenda – though yes economically, it’s absolutely difficult to control the American empire so huge and vast through the dynamics of socialism. But on levels on which Sanders pursues the case, it still is equally important. The focus of the American foreign policy has unabatedly continued in only one direction. Adding negotiations to the agenda or only voicing the concern might not change the course of the American foreign policy but still suffices to the apprehensions of the nations affected by it. Bernie Sander thus is quoted saying some utopian ideas but still fresh and engaging

“The test of a great and powerful nation is not how many wars it can engage in, but how it can resolve international conflicts in a peaceful manner. I will move away from a policy of unilateral military action and regime change, and toward a policy of emphasizing diplomacy, and ensuring the decision to go to war is a last resort”.

On the other hand, one looks at Clinton’s stance on foreign policy

“As secretary of State, I worked to restore America’s leadership in the world. As president, defending our values and keeping us safe will be my top priority. That includes maintaining a cutting-edge military, strengthening our alliances, cultivating new partners standing up to aggressors, defeating ISIS, and enforcing Iran nuclear agreement”.

My naivety stems from the usual hope coming from the abyss but yes it’s difficult that Sanders would win. But the hope is bright as it may eventually turn into something that can bring something good in American foreign policy which right now seems to be a weak issue. What agitates me being a Pakistani is the fact that belonging to a certain privileged class has made some sections of our society to debate about Clinton in a favourable light. Of course we face terrorism as our primary issue, we face the violation of a woman’s dignity but for the first time I – being a woman – am not happy over what Clinton has to say or offer to women in America and worldwide, and what she has to offer to foreign policy that ultimately would affect Pakistan the most.

Hence such words matter a great deal because it affects Pakistan’s fight against terrorism, it affects what Pakistanis think about terrorism and the America nation and also adds to the continuous tussle to the anti-American liberalist wing and to the anti-American nationalist wing in Pakistan.