The hegemony endures


Events such as negotiations with the Taliban in Afghanistan, muted reaction to Iran’s provocations and Turkey’s invasion of eastern Syria’s Kurdish held regions are not due to the U.S.’s declining ability but due to conscious policy path taken by the President Donald Trump (Editorial page, “In the ruins of unilateralism,” January 3). As Mr. Trump came to power by promising to recall/withdraw American forces fighting wars abroad, he is unwilling to risk sending more forces for any new wars and is also pushing for a quicker withdrawal from Afghanistan. Though the phenomenal rise of China and signs of a comeback of Russia are a reality, the strength of the U.S. to shape the global politics remains as potent as ever as it is still the world’s mightiest military power. In spite of the flip-flops of Mr. Trump on the foreign policy front, the U.S. remains the only global power that has overarching influence over the global politics. China is still far away from reaching that position of influence and Russia is still farther away. It is true that “hegemony of a single power is temporary”, but as of now the end of this hegemony is neither imminent nor in sight.

Kosaraju Chandramouli,


True, the Taliban has been a difficult negotiating partner, Iran is becoming more reckless by the day and Turkey is causing tensions within NATO. But these are not reasons enough to predict the end of American hegemony. The U.S. still wields enormous clout and has the power to shape and influence events anywhere in the world. Unrest within NATO is not likely to cause any major fault-lines within the organisation. China poses a threat to U.S. in the economic front, but it has to go a long way before it can dream of supplanting Washington from its pre-eminent status. Any prognosis of the U.S. losing its significance is premature for at least the next two decades.

Prasanna Aditya A.,

New Delhi

The DMK surpassed the AIADMK in rural local body elections. That it finished ahead in both panchayat unions and district panchayats was a good gauge of the M.K. Stalin-led party’s winning chances in next year’s Assembly elections. The DMK has claimed its victory as an endorsement of his leadership. The AIADMK could not capture a majority of the local bodies despite having the advantage of being the party in power. The voters’ electoral preference for DMK is attested by the fact that it did better than AIADMK even in areas considered to be the strong voter base of the ruling party. On the credit side, the AIADMK did not perform dismally in the absence of Amma. It is significant because the party has owed its existence to one unchallenged supreme leader and revolved around him or her; first MGR and then Jayalalithaa. It can also take comfort from the fact that its alignment with BJP did not turn out to be its undoing. This is not to say that the perception that the Edappadi Palaniswami government is acting as a proxy for the Modi government has not affected its image as a Dravidian party. Now that the DMK has proved that it is a party with mass support in Tamil Nadu, its opinions on issues are bound to carry greater weight at the national level.

G. David Milton

Maruthancode, Kanyakumari

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Printable version | Jan 24, 2020 7:16:40 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/opinion/letters/the-hegemony-endures/article30474188.ece

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