The Politics of Intervention

When I was growing up, United Kingdom had a relatively stable political climate. There was none of those glorious wars, controversial political decisions, global turmoil, that was soon to become everyone’s problem here. Further off in Europe, Germany was still recovering from the damages, losing the Second World War had caused the country. It took many years of economic reform, careful political selections, to do the job and it was really, really slow.  My country, Malaysia, where I spent a portion of my childhood, was just like today: trying to make the world understand we are not interested in global domination, like the United States….simply doing good for our infrastructure and developing our economy at a steady-rate.

So, where all of this talk is concerned about political intervention being a bad thing, makes me wonder if some of my political opponents have become a little too soft to criticism over the years. It’s understandable , it has been going on for so long. On Christmas, I find myself going through my history research like it is just any other day, despite it being my favourite time of the year. The political climate made me dig out some interesting stories on what could have inspired my contemporaries to think and act, as such.

I’m a strong supporter of Roosevelt’s policies, but on many occasions I find myself quite solitary, here.  He was an affluent man, deeply interested in the ‘cowboy culture’, contributed to the Caribbean, and well-liked in certain political circles, but his far-too delayed economic responses to the Great Depression were dubious to many. On top of that, because he was relatively powerful, during the First World War, he has been accused of harbouring war, for providing support to Great Britain, China and the Soviet Union and pushing ahead with war ideals out of fear of the growing power behind the alliance known as the Axis Powers (Germany, Italy and Japan).

When his sudden illness took Roosevelt’s life, and by default, Henry Truman came to power and inflicted terrible pain on the pages of history through his political decisions, with the atomic bombing of two towns in Japan, there was a lot of darkness that started to colour the world. I’ve never understood it, and you would be far-fetched to find any country not affected here from all of it.

There has been so much talk about the “Nixon” scandal, for example, and although it’s great that a lot of the research has uncovered the people who brought the news to us, for which we are all really grateful, there is too much stigma in the air for an incorrect political decision by one of the former presidents. It borders on the hysteria surrounding, the “Lewinsky” scandal on most days, but in a good, “contributing to the debate” way.

Washington has a right to intervene in subjects if they feel that security of the country or the government is being jeopardized in any way. What I do think was overdoing things, however was when Nixon took it upon himself to ‘bug’ offices of his political opponents. There was a lot of sensitivity issues involving all the revelations, and sometimes the episodes made me think that the people covering the incident, were immune to this notion, whether you want to talk about ‘Deep throat’ or Hollywood.

Leaving that aside, the clandestine activities that Nixon was involved in, such as suppression of certain political sections, trying to hide the tape recordings that were present in his office, which documented his involvement in Watergate, means that there was a certain element of cowardice involved in his political decisions. But why? All it took was a resignation from his post as the President of America, to avoid impeachment, which here could also mean removal of a politician for inappropriate demeanour, in the office, at the House of Representatives.

And Nixon took that decision eventually. He decided to quit and ever since, we’ve….never looked back. He quit politics because he came to the conclusion that he no longer had any allies in office. You could say, he wanted to battle it out, that he had some hope things would reach a better end, but did stupidity hit him with lightning that suddenly? It’s difficult to comprehend, that someone behind such a largescale operation could not understand that Congress would never support him if he was ever found out.

This issue is rather perplexing, his cowardice in approaching a subject that did not beget it, at least to himself. But there is a lot of these ‘blank spaces’ in politics that goes on. Should you trust Henry Kissinger because he is controversial in his remarks, because he is powerful & behaves dastardly towards the topic of ‘Indira Gandhi’? Do you believe in rubbish rumours that the Tories and Labour couldn’t form a coalition in government because it wasn’t permitted, or because of the actual reason, that David Cameron turned out to be a British rat, instead of a British lion, much like his friend, Nick Clegg? The two never cared about Labour, that much is understood, they never cared about their parties too, which despite all the hoo-hah prior to the elections, lost out on majority in actuality.

Actually, if you’ve been a fan of that hoo-hah you must have had a ball during their first “speech together” at Westminster….the press certainly loved it! I think the problem with these two politicians was that they did what everybody likes to do, everybody gullible, that is, when hope is out of reach: discard exit-polls as nonsense. It was predicted that there would be a hung parliament, in fact, if I remember correctly, it was actually at midnight, right before the votes were being counted. But the two leaders decided to encourage their supporters, that everything is going to be a-alright, rather than face truth.

I know, that it’s difficult for politicians to come to terms with a grave loss and they hold onto hope for a very long time. But doesn’t it make you wonder if all of it was worth it? Shouldn’t you have the courage to attempt something new, when faced with, loss? But I’ve seen it happen for numerous elections at home, & abroad, but it is always like that. It would have been easier to perhaps accept that George Bush had won a second term in office, and the implications this would have on the Iraq war, and do something to contribute to the political debate, rather than just have your hope extinguished like that. Is intervention always the right thing to do in politics? If you could debate with more clarity, in politics, then maybe…..that’s all you have to settle for now.

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