‘The perils of indifference’ was what famous Hebrew journalist, Eidel Wieser, said to describe the blatant lack of regard states had for the ways Jews were treated all across the world. Discrimination, ethnic cleansing and purges were just a few of the atrocities that they were subject to and yet little was done to assist them. This reaffirms the need for countries to intervene in the affairs of another, in terms of economic, political or social instability, because states are not always capable of making the right decisions to maximise the welfare of the society. Indeed there are cases where external intervention is unjustified, especially when global or regional powers try to exert their influence over another country. However, it is not right to assert that ‘No country should intervene in the affairs of another’ as it gives too much power to individual governments. Instead, mediated intervention should be used to ensure that countries are kept in check.
The common argument to justify the stand for ‘No external intervention’ is that of sovereignty, where the basic integrity of the state should be respected. This has been encoded in the United Nations charter, as well as that of the ASEAN as a basic guideline to govern state relationships with one another. It has been frequently invoked by countries, such as the Soviet Union and China in the Korean War and even Indian, in the on-going dispute with Pakistan over Kashmir. While it is important to acknowledge the view that as the government, they need to exercise their political will and have the right to exert their influence without any interference, we need to realise that this monopoly of power might not be healthy for countries, Case in point, India, who has utilised brutal methods in dumping down on the Kashmiri insurgents and have committed an overwhelming number of human rights violations since the outbreak in 1989, over a territory that has not officially been recognised as theirs. In this case it is not right to allow India to invoke the rule of sovereignty as a means to justify their actions for it would allow the continuation of such actions towards the Kashmiris, to render conflict even more intractable, rendering the argument for sovereignty limited as it should not absolve them of such actions.
‘The Great Satan’, as the Islamic fundamentalists often describe the Americans would be another case to support this rule of non-intervention. This occurs when regional powers or international superpowers attempt to exert their influence on another country through state intervention. There were many blatant incidents of this, especially during the Cold War era. The USA ; in trying to counter the Soviet communist influence, funded Islamic extremist rebels and provided then with huge amounts of arms and today, these fundamentalists constitute the Mujahideen, a transnational terrorist organisation. Egypt, in trying to assert its regional leadership as the forefront of Pan-Arabism, encouraged the Yom-Kippur war on Israel that instead had devastating impacts on the Arabs and the worldwide economies through oil crisis of 1973 that saw oil prices spike from $2.50 per barrel to $12 per barrel. The list goes on and on with conflicts from Somalia, to Vietnam and even Kosovo. On these grounds, it is indeed hard to justify state interventions because the toleration of malfeasances and committing of arms should under no circumstances, be allowed. Indeed the pursuit of interests might not always harm countries, as in the case of Japan and Western Europe, whose economies were rejuvenated by western intervention, but these are the anomalies. Too often we see that states descend into further chaos due to the polarising nature of intervention to pursue one’s interests, which then highlight the dangerous potential that intervention in another’s country has on society.
However, these cases in which authoritarian regimes attempt to consolidate control, or governments...
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