The World is not just America

Being born Filipino after the peaceful revolution in the Philippines that ousted Philippine president Marcos, I learned that America is a democratic ally of the peace-loving nations. Every country that opposes America is considered a foe and at least an enemy of the world peace and democracy. However, as I asked myself why the same country supported the exile of the ousted president, and the same time supported the succeeding president. I just accepted before that the United States of America is just acting a supportive brother of a sibling nation who is in distress. Then, I learned about the Middle East, Russia, oil and China, everything changed the way I looked USA.

Ofcourse, I recognize the valuable contribution of USA to the Philippines. It had supported the Philippines economically through financial grants and aids that promote the welfare of Filipinos. It allowed three million Filipinos to acquire citizenship in the country. That itself is enough to convince a Filipino to stop thinking beyond what US does. When USA engages in a war, the Philippines will always be there to support since the Cold War, the Vietnam War, Second World War and even the recent wars in the Middle East. In return, the Philippine government gets something in return.

However, during the hype of territorial conflicts between China and the Philippines, USA seems very hesitant to make a bold move for the Philippines. I was actually shocked by it, given many naval bases were established in the Philippines just to neutralize the increasing Chinese influence in the region. Then, I realized USA will put its own interests before others. Any country would do so. What seems to be the interest then? To remain the number 1 political and socio-economic power and influence in the world. In the first place, American companies rely heavily on this advantage such that every country in the world has an American company dominating in one area or another. However, there is an area US before had not dominated - oil. So, to push its interest it attempted and continued to make advances, even militarily to protects its so-called allies in the Middle East, a place abundant of oil. However, maintaining dominance in the region is without any hindrance, some islamic states would not want any American intervention in local affairs. Because of this, some long-term conflicts continued.

Then, Russia came into picture. This remnant country of the old Soviet Union, the long-time rival of the democratic America is attempting to protect also its interests on oil, trade and regional influence. To do this, it has to pose as an valuable option to those who opposes American intervention within Russia's sphere of influence, especially in Eastern Europe, the Artic region, the Caucus region and the Middle East. Furthermore, another economic power China has taken the stance of retaking the dominant force in Asia, and even in Africa. Trade has changed after China made economic ties to these countries, in support of continued influx of needed resources in China. However, the move of China somehow weakened the sphere of influence of USA in some key regions, especially in Asia. This is seen as a threat to American interests in the long run, given that China embraces communism as a state-supported ideology.

The big question is what really is America doing. USA is just like another country with its own interests. It has a goal to remain the biggest political and economic superpower in the world, and anything that stands as a hindrance to this goal is considered a potential threat to its existence and even to its ideals. Actually, there are no real quarrels. There are just overlapping areas of interests. Russia is fine with dominating its region, but Europe feels threatened by this. China wants to continue its trade but USA wants China to follow its rules so the American companies themselves would end up gaining advantage. As a result, USA is using other cards to push its interests, human rights, democracy and free trade. This is where both Russia and China seems to fail in the American perspective. There are substantial evidence that both countries need improvement in these areas, but the question remains whether it should be USA to dictate how these countries will be treated and managed. The question is not about correcting an action, but how conflict of interest put USA in an awkward position to judge the two countries' actions.

Interestingly, Europe shares the same values with USA, but hesitate to be subjected under the same treatment and influence USA does to other countries. The former European colonizers support US its cause and the values it stands for. However, European countries after the Second World War are just too vocal in its concerns, such that USA as much as possible will attempt not to interfere with its concerns. USA has every comment to any Asian president who counters its interests, but it is silent with anything that concerns with United Kingdom, Germany, Italy, Greece and even Spain. These countries have also their loopholes in their system, but since American interests are not too big to invest time and effort in these countries, then there is no point of interference.

What is my point? I do not hate USA. I am thankful to USA in behalf of the Filipino-Americans, and those aspiring ones. I do not however see living in the USA. I am contented in Europe. My point is that for those who seem to think that every action of USA is acceptable and ethically-right, please try to dig deeper into the problem. USA has its own interests, and the country will not address your personal concerns. Your support to America does not matter even to America, unless it is aligned to its own valued interests. Think of your own interests and your own country's interests. It is not wrong to say something bad against America. In the first place, freedom of expression is what America stands for. Ooops, I mean just their interests.

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