Wednesday, December 08, 2004

All democracies are equal, but... 

There's just no way to make some people happy. Take for example Balaji Reddy, Special Correspondent of "India Daily", who editorialises today:

"Ukraine, Afghanistan and Iraq have something in common. It is called dictatorship in the name of democracy."
I'm sure that Mr Reddy was just as concerned and outraged when Ukraine, Afghanistan and Iraq were all examples of dictatorship in the name of dictatorship. Which wasn't, as you may recall, all that long ago - some thirteen years for Ukraine, three for Afghanistan and one a and a half for Iraq. Of course, had the United States not been involved in all three cases, Mr Reddy would still be able to enjoy the comfortable status quo.

Apparently without any irony, Mr Reddy uses quotes from Russian president Putin to condemn the trend towards "democracy [being] used to cover dictatorships." I'll leave you to make any appropriate comments.

And finally, this clincher at the end:

"In the Islamic countries, people are skeptical about the Afghan elections."
Why not challenge the Islamic countries to put aside skepticism and show Afghanistan how it can be done better?

India remains the world's largest democracy, which also obviously makes her the largest in the developing world. A little more sympathy to democratic aspirations of other peoples and a little bit less condescension wouldn't perhaps go astray.


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