The less credible superpower

  • With the least credible president

The sole superpower of the unipolar world, the United States as we call it, over the last decade or so has experienced a visibly evident abatement in its credibility as a world leader subject to its not-so-popular decisions impacting the global security and economic equilibrium, and resulting in a major geo-political and strategic imbalance spreading from Far East Asia to the Middle East. The US policies, vowed to conjure sustainable peace, security, and stability, originally have resulted in a decline in the stated graphs, escalation of violence stemming from a rise in global terrorism, and a politically vulnerable environment.

The US government, particularly under the Obama administration, promised change not just to the American people but to the world at large, also remained merely a continuation of the hapless consequences of the past administrations. With Donald Trump in driving seat, at present, the US seems to be well on the way down the ramp of glory, and far from attaining its lost credibility.

The latest setback to global US hegemony came from the recent attempt by Trump administration to recognise Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, and announcement of relocating the US embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. The announcement faced fierce criticism, not just from the Muslim world, but also the closest considered US allies as the move can potentially jeopardise the already struggling peace and security situation in the volatile mid-east region. The United Nations Security Council (UNSC), on Monday (18th Dec, 2017), took up the issue drafting a resolution rejecting the recognition of Jerusalem as capital of Israel by US. The US in response, as expected, vetoed the resolution, maintaining its stand on the announcement made by its President reversing decades old US policy on the holy land. Nikki Haley, the US ambassador to the UN, announced the veto. The decision to veto was declared “dangerously misplaced decision by the US to legitimise a declaration that is already null and void, and lacks any legality”, by Pakistan’s permanent representative to the UN, Maleeha Lodhi.

With the US vetoing UNSC resolution, the Palestinian leadership raised the issue before the 193 member UN General Assembly, co-sponsored by Pakistan, in order to gain international support to contain the US attempt to declare Jerusalem as the capital of Israel

With the US vetoing UNSC resolution, the Palestinian leadership raised the issue before the 193 member UN General Assembly, co-sponsored by Pakistan, in order to gain international support to contain the US attempt to declare Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

The United Nations General Assembly, on Thursday (21st Dec, 2017), as a result of an overwhelming majority of the body voting in favour of the resolution declared the US move to declare Jerusalem as Israeli capital null and void. 128 member countries at the UNGA voted in favour, while only nine going against the moved resolution extending their support to the US idea. 35 countries abstained from voting, while 21 were absent.

The overwhelming support extended by the UNGA member countries to the Palestinian people is a vote of no confidence on the US, and is detrimental to the superpower aura of the latter. Surprisingly for the US, even the closest and new found strategic favourites voted against the US recognition of Jerusalem, India to stand out as an example. Those favouring the US move barely hold any significance in shaping global scenarios.

Reacting vigorously to the outcome of the UNGA session, Nikki Haley stated that, “the US will remember this day”. She reiterated that, “the decision will make no difference to the US decision to move its embassy to Jerusalem, but this vote will make a difference to how the Americans look at the UN and the countries that disrespect us in the UN”, she went on to threat. The move to do so, however, presents an immature diplomatic and self-centered outlook of the world power. Respect in the league of nations is a by-product of productive contribution to the development and well-being of countries other than oneself.

This is, however, not the first instant that has undermined the US dominance and leadership. North Korean nuclear program precedes Jerusalem in the list. The world remembers the US president’s address at the UNGA while discussing the Rocket Man. Iran has also remained in the list of countries mishandled by the US, and an evidence of its ineffectiveness to resolve an issue of dispute.

Pakistan, ever since the initiation of the global war on terror, has remained in the line of US fire. The relations between the two countries are more strangled than ever. The constant US demand of do more has pushed Pakistan in search of alternative options to seek support from rather than rely on the US. The threats by the US seem, now, seem to have lost their weight, and fail to have an impact on the political and diplomatic stands of countries.

The display of aggression by the present US administration has also made its allies rethink extending their support blindly, as they might end up getting walled by narrowing down their diplomatic outreach, and influence.

The US stands alone, for now. For the US to regain its diminishing status as a responsible superpower, it is imperative to give up the diplomacy of aggression, arrogance, and adamancy. Continuing on the same path of aggression and arrogance, might keep the US singled out in future as well.

Games can be won individually, but not championships.