By Zhong Sheng

Interests can only be acquired through harmonious relations. However, some short-sighted American politicians just don’t understand it, and instead abandoned the international justice that the US used to take pride in.

Their practices revealed the essence of the US, a betrayer of justice who forsakes good for the sake of gold.

Since 1940s , the US rose to be the strongest power of the world, and gradually changed its isolationism policies and took an active part in global affairs to promote its values, making great stride in shaping the image of a “greatest power”. It called itself the “leader of the free world” and an “indispensable nation”.

However, the current administration of the country is maxing out Washington’s morality that has already been widely questioned.

US politicians, under the banner of the so-called “free, fair and reciprocal” trade, are waving the “big stick” of tariffs and exerting extreme pressure. They pretend to build an open environment for investment, but are indeed pressuring the enterprises of other countries out of no reason.

These US politicians have shifted domestic development contradictions and deceived the general public, and withdrawn from global treaties such as the Paris Agreement while making fancy speeches to take international responsibilities.

The US poses as an important force to safeguard the world peace, but is arbitrarily interfering with the internal affairs of other countries. It groundlessly accused other countries of violating human rights, but has quit the United Nations Human Rights Council itself.

A poll conducted by management consulting company Gallup in 134 countries indicated a continuous drop in the global approval of the US leadership. The rating was down nearly 20 percentage points from a few years ago.

Nowadays, everybody knows clearly what US justice means –everything that conforms to American interests, and those aren’t helpful for achieving “America first” are unjust.

Even many of the country’s allies have taken a beating. They were left unprepared as the US unilaterally withdrew from the Washington-initiated Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement, and the hard-won negotiation results of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action were also wasted upon the US withdrawal. Just in less than a month after the US and the European Union issued a joint statement to halt tariff plans, Washington once again threatened to slap a 25-percent tariff on automobiles.

Even American political scientist Joseph Nye who coined the term of “soft power” has to admit that the “soft power” of the US has been weakened.

The US distortion and neglect of international justice exposed the extreme pragmatism of the US politicians. They see no value and rules in international exchanges, but only bare trade of interests and confrontation of powers. The so-called justice is only a tool for them to fight for influence, make hypes, and seek private profits.

American scholar Laurence Duggan once pointed out that the US policies were indeed imperialism in disguise of idealism that explains its self-serving practices in a moral rhetoric. This makes it easier to understand why US politicians are double dealers who use whatever that suits their interests and abandon whatever that does not.

Morality makes a person stand and a country prosper. International justice is not only a basis from which voices are made, but also a consensus of the international community on certain issues. It represents the values upheld by human society.

For instance, different countries should cooperate with and help each other rather than isolation, keep promises rather than backtracking, and respect each other with an equal mind rather than resorting to supremacy and bullying practices.

The countries that arbitrarily trample on the recognized values and principles will end up as a target of public criticism. US policymakers shall understand the traditional Chinese philosophy: those who stand with morality receive wide support and those who go against it receive little.

As a major country, the US shall absolutely take its responsibilities and showcase a wisdom that matches its size in front of the complicated problems.

In today’s world, the international influence of a country is not determined by only power, but to a large extent the values it jointly holds with other countries, the consensuses it reached with other nations, and the cooperation it conducts with its partners. These will help it achieve win-win results and common progress with the world.

A righteous man follows morality, practices justice and values reputation, as the old saying goes. Only by acting in an upright manner can a country be recognized by the world.

The US politicians should understand a basic rule that backtracking is never tolerated by morality, as such practice is irresponsible to their country and people, as well as the progress of world development and human civilization.

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


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