Manmohan Singh’s blanket support for west-driven globalisation may need a reality check

Prime News, National, International, New Delhi, May 3:- Former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s Op-Ed piece in The Hindu (April 22) contained many thoughtful observations on the implications of the current Ukraine crisis for the international community and the opportunities it offers to India to become the fulcrum of a new world order. However, on some points, a different view is possible.

Ukraine’s Mariupol, a city devastated by the Russian forces.

He believes that the Ukraine conflict is re-shaping the world order. The governing order was built around free societies, frictionless borders and open economies, he argues. Up to a point this may be true, but how many societies were really free, beginning with China with its central position in the global economy next only to the United States. Here we had one free society with extraordinarily deep linkages with what is being reviled today as an autocracy. And these huge economic ties continue despite the political rhetoric. China is by means an open economy, now or in the past, and yet it has risen phenomenally with the support of the West.

As for frictionless borders, our own situation does not endorse this, given the tensions on our borders with China and Pakistan, especially China’s sudden aggression in Ladakh, not to mention the lingering border issues between Russia and Ukraine since 2014 at least. There is no doubt that, as the former Prime Minister says, globalisation produced economic fruits by way of “free movement of goods, services and capital” that resulted in the doubling of GDPs and general peace and prosperity.

However, the claim of general peace in the world during the period of globalisation can be contested as this period saw the conflicts in Libya and Syria, for instance, that still continues, China’s maritime aggression in the South China and East China Seas and the enduring war in Afghanistan, not to mention the proliferation of Islamic terrorism, the emergence of the Islamic State and the resurgence of the Taliban culminating in its take-over of Afghanistan through terrorist violence. (MR, Inputs: Agencies)

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