By Ocaya p’Ocure, a social affair and political commentator, Uppsala Sweden 

President Biden

After being in office for less than a month, in a virtual conference with Western World leaders, President Joe Biden, excitedly declared that “Diplomacy is back”.  

The noble declaration was contradicted by American bombs raining on Syria with the infamous claims of targeting facilities used by ‘enemies’ of US in the Middle East. The bomb blasts must have put the claim of “Diplomacy is back,” deep down the sand dunes. 

Presumably, Biden wanted to signal Iran that it would pay a very heavy price if it were to order attacks against US troops in the region by political pressures from both Washington and Israel. In other words, the sound of “Diplomacy is back” is dead on arrival.  

Again, this can block the internationally recognized Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), commonly known as the Iran Nuclear Deal, negotiated by the Obama Administration. 

Some years back, an American Diplomat stated, “Elections have consequences”. Well, Americans just elected President Joe Biden who calls Russian President Vladimir Putin “a killer”. For his part, Putin responded by taking both the high and low road. On the one hand, he wished Biden good health without saying it with irony or joke. On the other hand, he responded with, “he who said it, did it”. 

The US again calls China a threat to world order. China counters that the Western World under American tutelage lacks the moral qualifications to judge China. One must state that the World politics has gone back to the sand dune level with the gusts of wind during the Cold War period blowing again.

To me, the election of Joe Biden came with great cheers in the Western World, but in Moscow and Beijing it was completely greeted with silence. 

Clearly, one may infer that ex-President Donald Trump might have been more of a leader to the taste of both Putin and Xi Jinping. The newcomer, President Biden appears to feel the need to prove his toughness against his two rivals.  

This notion may even drive President Biden to try to break with ex-President Trump’s gilding with all sorts of dictators including Putin and Jinping. This is probably why President Biden gnawed and ground his teeth before answering a question from a TV reporter about whether he considered Putin to be “a killer”. So, that is how Biden’s “Diplomacy is back” proclamation is shaping up.  

The American foreign policies under both Republicans and Democrats must not abdicate their responsibilities by singing Alleluia regardless of the state of human rights in the world. President Biden should not bring himself down to the gutter politics of his republican nemesis.  

The prevailing state of human rights in the world is still pathetic. American under both Republican and Democrat Administrations continue to hunt both Edward Snowden and Julian Assange for revealing their unsavory secrets. 

America is still embroiled in a direct war in Afghanistan. Though President Biden plans to withdraw US troops from Afghanistan by September 11, there is no telling if that will be the end of the war. What happened in Iraq about a decade ago is a reminder that history might repeat itself. Besides, the US is still embroiled in counter-insurgencies in West and North Africa as well as proxy wars in Somalia and the Middle East. As is often the case, new war fronts can open up in contested places such as Ukraine, Korea, South China Sea, and other regions, to test President Biden's resolve to use diplomacy instead of violence to resolve world problems. Even where there are no shooting wars, the US is known to ally itself with strongmen  who commit crimes against humanity with impunity. one would think that such heinous crimes such as this one reported in the Cameroon would cause a break in their alliance, but no. President Beyer, Museveni and others continue to be trusted allies of the US. Otherwise, President Biden's slogan of "Diplomacy is back" might just be a smoke screen to fool the world while he essentially stays the course to protect the usual US national interests. 

On the domestic front, one must not forget the murder of George Floyd by an American policeman, Derek Chauvin, in broad-day light which, ignited a worldwide rage and gave birth to the Black Lives Matter Movement. Of course, there are so many other unjust murders of black Americans. Still, there is no evidence that such murders are about to end any time soon. Just as the prosecution of Derek Chauvin was in progress hardly ten miles away, another black young man, Daunte Wright, was short dead by a policeman on April 12th.

So, President Biden, while the world welcomed your declaration that “Diplomacy is back”, some of your actions in your young administration call for skepticism. The world will continue to watch to see if you will act accordingly to the declared return of diplomacy.