Political systems

Argentina's President Javier Milei leaves surrounded by media after delivering a speech at the World Economic Forum (WEF) meeting in Davos on 17 January 2024. (Fabrice Coffrini/AFP)

President Milei: Argentina is proof that collectivism does not work

In his recent speech at the World Economic Forum, Argentina’s President Javier Milei pointed out that collectivist experiments are never the solution to the problems afflicting the citizens of the world, but are, on the contrary, the cause. Commentator Jin Jian Guo takes a closer look at Milei’s criticisms and assertions.
Supporters at an election night rally outside the Democratic Progressive Party's headquarters during the presidential election in Taipei, Taiwan, on 13 January 2024. (An Rong Xu/Bloomberg)

Do the Chinese need democracy?

Commentator Wei Da notes that democracy seems to be the best system to ensure distribution of power, with the people in charge rather than an individual with total authority. Furthermore, suppressing the rule of law with political motives can end up backfiring.
In 1998, US President Bill Clinton visited China and went to a private internet cafe in Shanghai to take a look at new developments in China. At that time, there were only 30 internet cafes in Shanghai, and the software was imported from the US, with no local internet technology companies.

[Photo story] Fifty years of China-US relations (Part 1)

In the first of a two-part feature, historical photo collector Hsu Chung-mao takes a look at the ups and downs between the world’s two major powers over the past 50 years, and how China’s economy and survival have been tied to the US in various ways.
Supporters of Islami Andolan Bangladesh party attend a protest rally demanding to abolish what they call a "dummy election" and to reorganise a free and fair election under the caretaker government, in Dhaka, Bangladesh, on 9 January 2024. (Mohammad Ponir Hossain/Reuters)

China and India unfazed by Bangladesh's one-sided elections

Bangladesh’s ruling government led by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina was easily returned to power on 7 January. While the US has often criticised Bangladesh's elections as not being free and fair, its close neighbours China and India seem prepared to focus on Bangladesh’s strategic value in increasing their regional influence.
A woman takes a picture along the moat outside the Forbidden City in Beijing, China, on 21 November 2023. (Wang Zhao/AFP)

Where is China now?

Only by absorbing the essence of modern civilisation can they rise above it, and only by standing on the peak of Western civilisation can they go on to the next level, says East Asian Institute senior research fellow Lance Gore. When one scans the terrain of Chinese public opinion and even academia, we see that very little remains of the constructive mentality once prevalent from the late Qing dynasty onwards — i.e., the spirit of humbly learning from the West for self-strengthening. Instead, we see "cultural self-confidence" that is not substantiated by proper analysis. Furthermore, political reform cannot always revolve around the consolidation of the ruling party’s position, and not make plans with the long-term interests of the Chinese people in mind.
Pedestrians walk down a shopping street in Taipei, Taiwan, on 6 December 2023. (Lam Yik Fei/Bloomberg)

[Big read] No cross-strait policy to appease all parties in Taiwan's presidential race

As the Taiwan presidential election day nears, Lianhe Zaobao journalist Miao Zong-Han takes a look at the three presidential hopefuls, their stances and how the voters are responding. Meanwhile, cross-strait tensions will be high even after the election results, as major powers will attempt to influence the content of the new president’s inaugural address.
Former US President Donald Trump speaks to members of the media at New York State Supreme Court in New York, US, on 7 December 2023. (Yuki Iwamura/Bloomberg)

Trump will be more dangerous than the Taiwan Strait in 2024?

Lianhe Zaobao associate editor Han Yong Hong notes that there is a real possibility of Donald Trump getting elected for a second time as US President. If Trump takes office and the US alliance system loosens, China will gain some diplomatic respite. But having engaged with the Trump administration before, China is unlikely to have high expectations for Trump’s China policy.
The New York City skyline is seen at sunset on 6 September 2023 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. (Al Bello/AFP)

Will the US collapse amid its ‘culture wars’?

Throughout history, the US has seen a myriad of “culture wars” over various issues that have divided US society. But despite these divisions, the overall effect and climate in the US is still conducive to promoting universal values and general balance.
People crossing the street in front of the Paramount Global headquarters in Times Square, New York City, 8 August 2023. (Michael M. Santiago/AFP)

The global south and global north: Where does Singapore belong?

Former journalist Goh Choon Kang notes the gap between the global north and global south, with more affluent countries not delivering on promises and commitments made to less developed countries. Is there hope of reconciling the strong and the weak?