The Ukrainian crisis and the need for a new world order
Last week, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky told the United Nations (UN) General Assembly: “If you cannot stop the conflict, the UN Security Council must be dissolved…” This n It is not the first time that the UN has proved ineffective in the face of aggression from one superpower or another. Is it time for a new world order?
The UN was created after World War II to guide the world in the right direction. But he was caught in the battle between two ideologies in what became the Cold War.
Pakistani-born historian Ishtiaq Ahmed wrote of a meeting that took place in May 1947 between General Bernard Montgomery and the heads of the British Royal Army and Navy. During this meeting, these generals made him realize that many of the top leaders of the Indian Congress were prone to socialism. They felt that if a “buffer state” was not built in the middle, the influence of the former Soviet Union would extend to the borders of the Indian Ocean. Ahmed concludes that following this, on June 3, 1947, Mountbatten announced the official decision on the partition of India and said that the time of transfer of power was changed to the earlier date of August 1947. This explains the importance of Pakistan for the West from then on.
India, on the other hand, had started looking for common ground even before the Belgrade Conference of the Non-Aligned Movement in 1961. Pakistan has now abandoned the United States (US) and settled in the camp of China.
This is why former Pakistani Prime Minister (PM) Imran Khan criticized the United States and said he was expelled. Western countries are trying to persuade India to stop buying Russian oil and armaments. When India refused to budge, Dalip Singh, US deputy national security adviser, warned of dire consequences for New Delhi. Later, President Joe Biden and the Secretaries of Commerce and Defense expressed similar sentiments. But India remains impassive. Why?
The main reasons for this are old relations, Russian concessions following oil price spikes, dependence on Moscow for 60% of military supplies and the determination of the current government. Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s “nation first” theory also applies to foreign policy. The West and Russia tried to force India’s hand at the UN General Assembly during the vote on Russia’s suspension from the Human Rights Council. New Delhi abstained; the vote against Russia was adopted.
The United States is in decline. For decades he used different deals to keep the world, especially Europe, under his control. These countries have sold poor and developing countries the dream of a global village based on democracy and liberalism. Former Russian President Boris Yeltsin has also joined. At that time, Vladimir Putin was Prime Minister. That is why, in becoming president, he sought to take a middle course. The 2008 US recession changed the equation. Then came the US push to expand the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) which forced Russia to back down.
There should have been a limit to NATO’s expansionist goals. But it should not be and the result is the conflict in Ukraine. The atrocities committed in Bucha have aggravated the situation.
The developing world is in turmoil. Look at our neighborhood. Pakistan, whose economy is faltering and its politics in a state of instability, is on the verge of collapse. Sri Lanka is on a slippery slope. President Gotabaya Rajapaksa had to declare a state of emergency for some time to deal with the protests. In Bangladesh, people are protesting against rising inflation. Nepal is changing. Indians are bearing the brunt of rising fuel and food prices. Tensions on the border with China remain unresolved.
Dalip Singh warned that India should not assume that if China escalates its aggression, New Delhi can count on Russian help. He seems to have forgotten that the former Soviet Union came to India’s aid in 1971 when the United States deployed its infamous Seventh Fleet to pressure New Delhi during the Bangladesh War. The fate of Ukraine testifies to the capriciousness of the United States and NATO and their lack of real support for the beleaguered country. We have to fight our own battles. And without a doubt, India has faced the current situation by keeping its self-interest at the forefront of its priorities.
The war in Ukraine has been going on for over 50 days now. It could go on forever. In this short time, the conflict not only split the world in two, but also raised fears of a third world war. It has also been proven that the order established after the dissolution of the Soviet Union has become obsolete.
There is now only one of two scenarios: either build a new world order with the interests of each country in mind, or prepare for a bleak future marked by strife and conflict.
Shashi Shekhar is Editor, Hindustan
Opinions expressed are personal