Looking at the vote of the US President, most of the world sees a less strong America.


In the eyes of most countries of the world, the United States is a powerful, yet faltering force, a struggling nation advancing in an election that will either redeem it or keep it away from myths and promise that for generations. It was defined in capitals in Singapore from Paris and Buenos Aires to Nairobi.

America’s stature and standing have been numerous in recent years, with many suggesting in international elections. This trend has ended this year, which is widely considered to be a disorganized and ineffective government response to the COVID-19 epidemic, and now by a chaotic electoral process.

For some, the once-bright beacon of egalitarian values ​​has faded into an alf, disintegrating power.

“The United States was always a model to follow,” said Gloria Joac Torres, a lawyer for 41 years in Mexico City. “Since I was a student, I always looked at the United States with admiration – everything they did there was in relation to human rights, level of education, personal freedom.”

But especially during the last four years, his view has been seen as a pattern of brutality and callousness resulting from America’s authoritarianism, as seen in the bareness of migrants and racial injustice.

“Honestly, I believe the United States is not the same as before,” she said. “One looks at the news and thinks, ‘Has this really become the United States of America?”

In many parts of the world, the widespread feeling of disenchantment directed by the United States cannot be put at the feet of President Trump, who began his term in January 2017. Particularly in areas like Latin America and the Middle East, where America faced repressive regimes for decades, historical grievances have long held Trump’s first presidency of America.

Nevertheless, in this year’s presidential election campaign, Trump, a Republican, called on unstable or oppressive states to hold long-term free and fair elections in a country, against former Vice President Joe Biden, a Democrat. Marks something of a role reversal for a country addicted. . This time, the International Crisis Group, a nonprofit conflict-resolution organization, suggested on Thursday that foreign leaders “urge respect for democratic norms” as Americans go to the polls.

Some experienced observers of American society say that the current climate of political division brings a sense of deja vu – and a warning that upheaval and discontent are nothing new, even in a country that Proud of the strength of its democratic institutions.

Former Ambassador of Singapore to the United Nations, Bilhari Kausikan, said the environment around US Election 3 is feverish. 3 reminded him of the 1970s, when he lived in the United States and saw a superpower rack by Firsthand and questioned its direction.

“To me, there is a period of self-doubt that was probably worse, because you were defeated in the war in Vietnam, the economy was shabby, worse now than ever. There was always racial polarization,” he said. “And this It is not just America – all Western democracies undergo periodic paroxysms of self-doubt. But people should not underestimate your ability to reproduce yourself. ”

Nevertheless, in places like Germany – where, within living memory, the United States served as a much admired defender – trade has become unstable on the American path in recent years. Germany, which is Europe’s largest economy, is one of the closest traditional allies to the United States, but relations have become increasingly serious with Chancellor Angela Merkel’s resentment over Trump’s government’s defense spending and trade policies.

48-year-old Olav Schrage, a cardiologist in Berlin who has frequently visited the United States, said many of his compatriots see Trump as a “total fraud” and “horrific person”. But the thing that worried him said, “So many.” [Americans] Okay with that, and not only accept, but also appreciate it. ”

For many Germans, the American and Americans’ sense of connection is deeply personal. Like others of his generation, Schrage has childhood memories of the Cold War, when a quarter million American troops were stationed in then-West Germany against the looming threat of the Soviet Union, which was then under the control of East Germany Was. .

An older generation of Germans remembers how the US-funded Marshall Plan helped rebuild their enemy from the ashes of World War II, paving the way to prosperity. And in 1948–49, the American-led Berlin airlift was an important lifeline for a besieged city, where planes touched around the clock, witnessing the Soviet blockade of West Berlin.

In East Asia, other historical allies feel shocked and worried at American thugs.

South Korea has been largely successful in preventing an outbreak of coronovirus that began around the same time in the United States. It has a population of less than one-sixth of the US, but has had approximately 450 deaths from COVID-19, compared to more than 222,000 in the United States.

Hong Joo-min, a South Korean pastor who runs a shelter for refugees in Seoul’s souven suburb, received a call this month about an eager asylum seeker who no one knew what to do – an American.

A Texas-born black man in his 40s, who immigrated to the country from Indiana in February, said he was persecuted back home because of his race and his native country was in turmoil, Hong said.

“I didn’t see anything like that – I thought, what’s going on?” Said Hong, who typically works with refugees from Yemen, Angola or Egypt. “Looks like America is really hot.”

Like many South Koreans, the pastor has felt again on North Korea’s dictator Kim Jong Un’s Trump by off-doing WhatsApp.

“It’s like playing around a child, so unpredictable and not rational or reasonable,” he said. “America is supposedly leading the world, but it is unstable and impossible to tell what will happen.”

In rival China, tensions with Washington have flared this year over cases including coronoviruses – for whose worldwide spread Trump blamed Beijing (China has reported more than 5,000 coronoviruses killed), China’s new national in Hong Kong Security law, and human rights abuses in Xinjiang. The two countries closed each other’s consulates in Houston and Chengdu this year.

Among Chinese social-media users, the topic of the US elections has attracted more than 2.6 billion views on the microblogging site Weibo. There are discussions of the president’s debate, Trump’s hospitalization for COVID-19, the US poll and campaign finance.

Many commentators posted an emoji of a man holding a piece of watermelon – a Chinese version of the box-of-popcorn emoticon in the US, meant to reveal some detachment with a sense of detachment upon seeing it.

The American crisis is a disinformation for China’s state media, replete with reports of American coronavirus cases and deaths, along with violent images of protesters struggling with police – all of which means China’s authoritarian system Unlike American democracy institutions are unable. Ensure public safety and bring economic reforms.

For all the vast reserves of American “soft power” – its profound cultural and economic impact around the world – the long-standing American role as a magnet for bright and ambitious young people around the world fades in some quarters. , 33, an engineer in Caracas, Venezuela’s capital.

“I think people see or study the United States more or less as a place because of complex restrictions,” he said. “Barriers have made it such that we do not consider migration to the United States an attractive option compared to countries such as Germany, Austria, Canada.”

Even if there has been a significant erosion of the American image abroad, neither allies nor enemies doubt the importance of the relationship going forward.

Peter Baer, ​​a German lawmaker and co-ordinator for transaltic issues, said Europe considers a strong partnership with the United States to be important, no matter who is the next president.

“It is sad to see that things are not really moving forward now, and it seems like the transatlantic pillars have been destroyed,” said Bayer, who earned a law degree at the University of Virginia and in the United States Law practiced States. “It’s really disappointing.”

Singapore diplomat Kausikan said that the US is still a strong draw for young Asians pursuing higher education. But he said that these days, American traits like creativity were more inspiration than the political system of the country.

And to set a democratic example, he gave some blunt advice for America.

“Don’t idealize yourself,” Kausikan said. “Because others don’t.”

Times staff writers King and Bengali reported from Washington and Singapore respectively, and from Berlin special correspondent Kirschbaum. Staff Writer Patrick J. In McDonnell, Mexico City, Alice Su in Beijing and Seoul, Victoria Kim and Mexico City Special Correspondent Cecilia Sanchez, Merri Mogollone in Carras and Andres D’Alessandro in Buenos Aires contributed to this report..

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