One might have frequently heard the international community’s reaction for and against new measures, policies and decrees that are being ratified by Islamic countries, especially Afghanistan, showing sense of either apprehension or gratification. Even many in the Islamic world believe that whatever the international community declares shall be practiced by their governments no matter what. I feel that it is important to know a bit about what and/or who really the international community is and why does it usually have a say on the internal affairs of other states?
Indeed, there has been a slight difference of opinions over the definition of the term ‘international community’. Many believe that it is a vague term used in geopolitics and international relations to refer to a broad group of people and governments of the world, but it does not literally refer to all nations or states in the world.
Alternatively, Noam Chomsky, an American philosopher and political activist, asserts that this term is used to refer to the United States and its allies.
Moreover, Professor Peter Burnell of the University of Warwick argues that even a number of very important states, such as China, Russia and those of the Arab and Islamic worlds, are often distant from the concept of the ‘international community’.
Given the above definitions, the international community is nothing but the implicit name of the United States which typically aims to ensure that the international norms and the prevailing global order are sustained across the globe.
Therefore, it’s not surprising that any rule and/or practice defying the international norms would see a reaction from the US and her allies. Those norms, known as human rights, women rights, and freedom …, are endorsed as international principles which, following the World War II, were encouraged by the United States [the super power] to be exercised by the entire nations of the world aimed at preventing another war and spreading democratic values globally.
However, the bitter truth is that they [Americans and the West] require other nations, especially Muslims, to acknowledge those principles; but when it comes to themselves, they repeatedly happen to violate those of their self-fabricated values. Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria are salient specimens of how the United States and NATO turned to abuse the rights of Muslims by manipulating the fate of these great nations right before the eyes of the so-called United Nations, ICC and other international watchdogs.
In fact, the term ‘international community’ is a solid cover through which the United States happens to intervene in the internal affairs of other nations while keeping to condense public sensitivity.
If one takes a look at the past 20-year of Republic, s/he figures out that the United States used to intervene in essential internal affairs of the previous governments – from imposing system of governance to establishing the Constitution and from manipulating the elections to appointing senior military & security executives. However, following the takeover of Afghanistan by the Islamic Emirate, the US hasn’t yet stopped interfering on the internal affairs of Afghanistan. As Ned Price, the Spokesperson of Department of State has recently declared that the US will exert pressure on Taliban to reconsider making Hijab compulsory. I don’t want to touch upon whether this decree was to be issued earlier or later and/or how should it have been promoted, but I can frankly say that I don’t see any Muslim men and women to stand against Hijab which is an instruction from Allah (swt) not of any individual or faction.
However, what I mean is the same Department of State did not declare a single word when our Muslim sisters were insulted, tortured and banned to wear Hijab at schools under the Hindutva regime in India few months ago.
In a nutshell, I emphasize that the United Stated has usually intervened in the internal affairs of Muslim nations with the name of ‘international community’ to see that the international norms are ensured as there is no potential threat to their political interests and democratic values. Besides, the means [approach] through which they happen to interfere, even acknowledged by some surface-thinker Afghans, are the so-called shallow slogans such as ‘human rights’, ‘women rights’, and ‘freedom’, the deceptive values they themselves have violated at every corner of the world.
By: Saleem Kakar