Democracy's example

 The above is a copy of the Magna Carta that was reluctantly signed by King John (1215). It was originally called the Charter of Liberties and it eventually led to De Montfort's Parliament in 1265, the first elected parliament of England. Seeds of democracy.

Below, according to the Economist Intelligence Unit 's Democracy index map published in December, 2010, we note that few countries can claim first prize for democracy. Surprisingly the greatest exalter of freedom, the USA, isn't rated amongst the highest. In Europe the only country that excels is Sweden (9.80). The worst example in the world, with only 1.08, is North Korea.

Needless to add, countries who claim to defend democracy should be exemplary. They should avoid giving pretexts to those who, already disillusioned with unfulfilled promises of freedom, either grow beards and become religious extremists, or supporters of the growing, growling, antithetical mobs bent on destroying Israel, the USA, Europe and democracy itself.

The violence in Tunisia is obviously an expression of extreme frustration, a trop plein that no one, including the Tunisian government itself, seemed to have anticipated. As long as things appear to be relatively stable, democratic countries will go along with it. But obviously the democratic world was wrong. One can never practice double standards with impunity.

Naturally this also applies to Afghanistan, where whatever good is being achieved could be undermined by the corruption condoned, and seemingly perpetrated by a President virtually chosen and supported by the USA and Europe.

Maybe it was thought that if ever considered necessary, a Pashtun President might eventually be useful in negotiating with the Pashtun Taliban. This would be a natural follow-on from the continual incoherence of solving the Afghan problem, not by dealing directly with the Afghanis, but by dealing with Pakistan. The very country originally responsible for fostering the Taliban and sending them into Afghanistan to take over the country towards the end of the Afghan-Soviet war to impose their reign of 'religious' terror.

How can one justify the error of judgement and the incredible lack of communication between the West and Afghanistan from the mid 90's leading up to the major abomination of all time?
How can one not regret the assassination of Massoud who represented so much hope for his country? Few people know that the French journalist, Christophe de Ponfilly was so devoted and committed to Afghanistan and its freedom, and had so much faith in the 'Lion of Panjshir', that for him his assassination meant that there was no longer any future for Afghanistan. Consequently in his view, there was no longer any reason, even for the fine journalist that he was, to continue to live.

One also gets the impression that a similar disillusionment has effected Dr. Abdullah, who hopefully only temporarily, might prefer to turn his back on the bleak, political scene of Afghanistan. Such a gesture on his part would be perfectly understandable. But surely he still represents real hope for his country.

Whilst the West continues to finance Pakistan. Indeed it sometimes seems that the West is paying Pakistan for the right to wage war against Pakistan. This, because it's still painfully evident, as it always was since the 90's, that the enemy is still fostered within, as well as additionally financed and supported by other States.

The point of all this is not to make tiresome repetitions of what has already been referred to in Viewfinder. It's made as a suggestion that those who claim to represent democracy, and who would never tolerate massive election fraud or governmental, judicial irregularities and corruption in their own countries, should no longer collaborate in allowing things so to slide, virtually being accomplices to governmental, illegal activities, elsewhere. 

Whatever motive those who represent us may have, the over-easy acceptance of the massive fraud that made a fiasco of the Afghan elections, and the tolerance of the consequences, can never be regarded as a positive contribution towards the Afghan war effort. If Nato is still not succeeding in winning the trust of the Afghan people ('not all fortunate enough to be Pashtun') and thus the war itself, this could be one good reason why.
Is there any point in trying to defend a threatened democracy, if it appears that even the President and the government of that threatened country are not defending its fundamental principles?

Text by Mirino. Copy of the Magna Carta, the Democracy index Map and key, 
with grateful thanks to Wikimedia Commons. January, 2011

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