De-Colonization. Modern imperialism and colonialism appeared on the world’s political horizon in the fifteenth century when the European powers like Britain, France, Holland, Portugal, and Spain built their empire by over-powering backward and weak countries of Asia, Africa, and Latin America. These powers ruled the roost for about four hundred years throughout the world. Colonialism had its full circle by the end of the nineteenth and early twentieth century. Symptoms of its decay had become visible at the beginning of the twentieth century.
No doubt, thirteen British colonies of North America got independence in the eighteenth century and many Spanish colonies of South America in the nineteenth century. Roughly about the same period, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand threw the British foreign yoke. However, in the real sense of the term, decolonization gained momentum in Asia and Africa in the twentieth century, especially after World War II. Several factors, to be discussed later, account for rapid and large scale decolonization. In the wake of decolonization, many new and independent nations emerged in Asia, Africa, and Latin America, which played their significant role in post-war international relations.
The resurgence of Afro-Asian nations blazed a new trail in international relations that led to several new political, economic, and strategic developments, for instance, the initiation of the non-aligned movement, the origin of Third World countries, the eruption of regional conflicts, the rise of multipolar birth of mac-colonialism, setting up of regional organizations, beginning of the north-south conflict, demand for new international economic order, changes in the nature and function of state and international systems, etc. In these developments lies the significance of the process of decolonization and the emergence of newly independent nations. These developments also bestowed a new identity upon Afro-Asian nations Who, while challenging the Euro eccentric world views, presented their own alternative world views.
Before discussing decolonization, it will be pertinent to introduce colonialism in brief. Theoretically, distinctions are made between imperialism and colonialism, but practically, both terms are used interchangeably. According to Hobson, “Colonialism, in its best sense, is a natural overflow of nationality its test is the power of colonists to transplant the civilization they represent to the new natural and social environment in which they find themselves” 1 Winslow defined it as the occupation of virgin territory in which conflict was incidental, or even unnecessary, and subordinate to the desire of Europeans to find a new place to live.2
Cohen explained the advent of colonialism in these words: In their wake went Europe’s merchants, quickly seizing upon opportunities to increase their business and profits. In turn, Europe’s governments perceived the possibilities for increasing their own power and wealth. Commercial companies were chartered and financed, with military and naval expeditions frequently sent out after them to ensure political control of overseas territories.3
The economic philosophy behind the relationship between colonies and colonizers during classical imperialism in the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries was mercantilism, the philosophy, and practice of governmental regulation of economic life to increase state power and security.4
State power was considered a byproduct of national wealth, and gold and silver were known as important forms of wealth. One method to acquire the desired bullion was to maintain a favorable balance of trade, that is, to export more than was imported.
Many European colonial empires broke up in North and South America in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth century. With this breakup, mercantile philosophy faded away, and a new type of imperialism cropped up around 1870.
Western European nations later joined by the United States and Japan once again divided the world into vast empires and colonies. By the outbreak of World War I (1914), almost all Africa was under the foreign yoke of merely seven European powers (Belgium, Britain, France, Germany, Italy, Portugal, and Spain), in all of the Far East and the Pacific only Siam (Thailand), China and Japan remained free from the colonial rules of European or the United States.
But ultimately, China also succumbed to the pressures of foreign colonial powers, especially of Japan, who had joined the imperialist wave with the control of Korea and Formosa. In the Western Hemisphere, the United States succeeded in spreading its tentacles outside its continent, controlled Puretorico from the Spanish, extended its colonial hands westward to Hawaii and the Philippines, leased the Panama Canal Zone in perpetuity from the new state of Panama, and came to exercise substantial political influence over several Caribbean lands, notably Cuba.5
By 1900, the British Empire acquired the status of being the largest empire globally that covered a fifth of the globe’s land area and comprised perhaps a quarter of its population.6
It acquired the reputation of an empire on which the sun, indeed, did never set.
In contrast to classical imperialism, the new imperialism of the late nineteenth century was characterized by cutthroat competition among the imperial powers, for whom colonies became an important symbol of national power and prestige. In this competition, the local people of the occupied territories were often ruthlessly suppressed and exploited.
The supporters of colonialism argue that it not only offered large gains to the master countries but it also served many interests of the subjugated countries in the form of spread of modern education among their people, development of their natural and economic resources, construction of roads and railways, generation of electricity, growth of foreign trade, modern banking, etc.
However, the critics of colonialism have focused on dismal aspects of it. According to them, the disadvantages of colonialism to the subjugated countries outweigh the so Called advantages. Because of these disadvantages, hundreds of millions of people in Asia and Africa resolved firmly to discard their historic role as interiors in the context of superior, inferior relationship denoted by centuries-old term colonialism and thus assert their equality with the people of the colonial powers.
Modern and resurgent nationalism in the late nineteenth century and the principle of national self-determination after the First World War are the two most outstanding factors that enkindled the passion for independence among millions of colonial countries. Thus a stage was set for the process of decolonization. As a result of self-determination, six new states Czechoslovakia, Romania, Yugoslavia, Poland, Austria, and Hungary, were created out of the former’s territory Austro-Hungarian Empire. The Versailles Treaty’s territorial clauses deprived Germany of more than 25,000 square miles of territory and nearly seven million inhabitants in Europe.7
The treaty also denied Germany of its overseas territories. This was achieved through the League of Nations mandate system designed to transfer territories controlled by Germany and the Ottoman Empire to countries that would govern them as mandates pending their eventual Self-rule in the interwar period; some of the Afro Asian countries continued their struggle for independence but could not gain much success. After the Second World War, decolonization was greatly expedited, and a large number of Asian and African countries achieved independence.
After World War II, the threat of De-Colonization and Asian-African worldwide empire-building receded, and the process of decolonization gained momentum giving birth to a large number of independent states in Asia and Africa.
Thus the floodgates of decolonization were Opened in 1946. In the next thirty-five years, a profusion of new states representing more than one and a half billion people joined the international community as sovereign entities. Nearly all of these new nations were the product of the breakup of the vast British, French, Belgian, Spanish, and Portuguese overseas empires.8
Observed Kegley and Wittkopf in 1919, colonies embraced 77.2. percent of the world’s territory with 69.2 percent of its population.9
In 1970, colonies occupied. About 4 percent of the world’s land area is inhabited by between one and two percent of the world’s population.10
Now, relatively few vestiges of colonialism remain. Most of these remaining dependent territories have a population of less than 100 000.11
In sum, decolonization is surely a contemporary phenomenon, but as a political process, it has now largely been completed.12
Completion of the process of decolonization marked the dawn of a new era in international relations. Never, before observed Barraclough, in the whole of human history had so revolutionary reversal occurred with such rapidity. The change in the people of Asia and Africa and their relations with Europe was the surest sign of a new era’s advent.13
He further asserted that a new phase of world history had begun with the end of colonialism.14
The process of decolonization is the most outstanding and memorable benchmark of the post-World War II era.
Causes of rapid DE-Colonization:
Although decolonization was set in motion with the independence of America, Canada, Australia, etc., in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, it was accelerated in the twentieth century and more particularly after the Second World War. The following factors account for the rapidity in the process of decolonization after the Second World War:
1. Mutual Antagonism of Imperialists:
The imperialists encouraged these colonies to spearhead their national movement against their respective masters to weaken the enemy before the First and Second World War. The powers who had colonies were Great Britain, France, Portugal, Spam, Belgium, Holland, Italy, etc. Because of the rivalry among some of these powers, they started weakening the colonies of each other.
They inspired and supported nationalist movements in each other’s colonies. For example, the Franco Prussian War of 1870, which pitted the ascendant German nation against France, indicated the growing significance of industrial might and nationalistic sentiments on the one hand and increasing antagonism and economic jealousy among imperialist powers on the other.
Moreover, the annexation of the French territory of Alsace Lorraine by Germany in 1871 enhanced Franco-German antagonism in a way that prevented normalization of relations between the two European powers. The stage was being set for the ghastly war of 1914.
2. Influence of Western Culture:
Western philosophy, culture, civilization, literature, and education taught the people of these colonies the ideals of liberty, equality, fraternity, and democracy. Visits to European countries, Western education, and technological devices psychologically prepared the people to provide resistance and seek freedom.
The people of these colonies thought why these ideals were only for Wests-n n countries and not for them? Educated people of these colonies provided the necessary leadership to the masses and stressed these colonial people’s ideals. They were awakening and becoming conscious of these ideals and values. Thus, Western liberal ideals sowed the seeds of freedom and liberty in the colonies.
3. Nationalism and Self-Determination:
Before the Second World War, modern nationalism rose in different colonies, which implied a sense of identification with and pride in the nation-state and the quest for power and national self-fulfillment. Nationalist organizations were formed in different colonies, and these organizations aimed to lead national movements and get independence.
After World War I, the idea of national self-determination gained new importance in international relations. The same was supported by President Woodrow Wilson and later incorporated into the Versailles peace settlement. Kegley and Wittkopf observed.
The principle of self-determination meant that nationalities would have the right to determine who would rule them. This freedom of choice was supposed to lead to nations and governments content with their territorial boundaries and, therefore, less inclined to make war. The self-determination would also mean a redrawing of the map of war-torn Europe so that borders would fit ethnic groupings as closely as possible.15
The practical impact of self-determination was that it quickly encouraged the independence and emergence of new nation-states.
4. Promises of the Second World War:
The Second World War proved to be a boon for the freedom of these colonies. The sole principle for which allies fought the war was the right of self-determination and democratic ideals of equality, liberty, and fraternity. Imperialist Allied powers promised their colonies that the latter should give help and support to the former. In turn, after the war, these principles would also be implemented in the colonies.
It was assured that the people of colonies would be given the freedom and democratic self-government. That is why immediately after World War II, freedom movements got momentum and people of the colonies demanded urgent and early implementation of war-time promises and principles of self-determination and democracy.
5. Common Miseries:
These colonies’ people had common miseries like exploitation, poverty, starvation, illiteracy, backwardness, etc. Therefore to get rid of these miseries, there was no option but to have self-rule. During and after the Second World War, these miseries increased manifold. For instance, inflation, shortages of essential commodities, defective distribution system rationing, price control, etc., led to black-marketing, hoarding, and profiteering.
After the war, effects were further increasing miseries for the world in general and colonies in particular. These miseries and problems necessitated the need for decolonization.
6. Decline of Imperial Powers:
The Second World War badly crippled Europe’s imperial powers such as Britain, France, Italy, Germany, etc. After fighting two world wars in succession, these colonial powers were exhausted militarily, politically, and economically. To regain their lost power and prestige, they were more solicitous about their military and economic reconstruction. Under these pressing internal problems and circumstances, they were unable to hold their far-off colonies.
7. Pressure of USA:
After the Second World War, the USA emerged as a powerful country. Colonial powers were already weakened. The US pressurized these powers to free their colonies because of three reasons:
- The US did not want these powers to again become powerful with the help of their colonies.
- It wanted to implement allied war aims, e.g., to give the right of self-determination to establish a democratic government worldwide world.
- The US wanted to fill the power vacuum in these colonies after their freedom. It thus was interested in expanding its bloc and consolidating its position via-a-vs the USSR in a bi-polar world.
8. Eyelid of Communism:
Communists were influencing the nationalist movements in different colonies and endeavored to convert the same into communist movements. Western nations were being dubbed as imperialists and exploiters by the socialist camp. This emboldened the nationalist movements in these colonies, and they were progressively being attracted towards the socialist bloc in whom they found sympathizers and a savior. To save these colonies from communism, the Western powers granted freedom to some of these colonies and transferred the powers to non-communist people and parties.
9. U.N.O’s Contribution:
Close on the heels of the end of the Second World War in 1945, the U.N.O came into existence in October the same year with hopes and aspirations for building a new world with all the countries enjoying equality of status and dignity the comity of nations. To achieve this equality for each nation, it was of primary importance that decolonization is accelerated with the utmost vigor.
The post-war period witnessed the liberation of colonies one after the other in Asia and Africa. Those who joined the U.N.O as free nations after centuries of the imperial rule used this international forum for getting freedom for such nations as were still under bondage.
Newly independent states waged a struggle for decolonization in the General Assembly, where they could easily secure majorities with Latin American and Soviet-bloc states.
The General Assembly passed several resolutions urging the master countries to grant freedom to their colonies at the earliest, in the interest of world peace and abiding cooperation among the nations on equal footings. The imperial powers responded favorably to the call of the U.N.O and withdrew gradually from their colonies.
Expansion of the international community:
Credit also goes to the United Nations for success in decolonizing and expanding the international community. Coulombs and Wolfe pointed out At the beginning of World War II, there were over 120 colonial territories, accounting for one-third of the world’s land and population. As of 1980, the number of dependents and non-self-governing territories had shrunk to fifty-seven, leaving less than 10 million’s people (compared with the previous 700 million) under external colonial rule.16
In the beginning, UNO’s membership was 51; in 1984, it rose to 158 (notably 95 of the 158 members gained their independence since the end of World War II) and 1992 to 179. Finally, the United Nations, perhaps as a result of the steady growth of its membership, has politically condemned colonial practices through the process of, to paraphrase In is Claude, collective delegitimization.17
The emergence of a large number of new countries and their entry into the DMD hat examined the great influence on international relations, which has been
Impacts of DE-Colonization and Afro Asian Resurgence:
The Afro-Asian States that Won independence in the immature World War have made their own significant and substantial contribution to the intentional relations. They added new dimensions to it and perceptibly changed its character. Their role and contribution to international relations are enumerated as under.
1. Change in Nature and Scope of International Relations:
As a sequel to decolonization and expansion of the international community, international relations assumed real international character and scope widened. Before the Second World War, international relations were limited only to Europe and to North America. After decolonization, new and sovereign nations emerged in Asia, Africa, and Latin America.
They really internationalized international relations. The number of sovereigns stolen swelled with them, and they challenged the ethnocentric of the Western nations and processes. The challenge was constructive since it led to intellectual efforts to rediscover their identity on the one hand and pragmatic nation-building on the other.
These nations did so at different levels and in many forms, creating a thematic unity and pragmatic coordination among them. New types of relations and regional problems came on the international scene, and these opened up new vistas of international relations.
2. Setback ta imperialism and Racialism:
imperialism and racialism suffered a serious setback after the Afro-Asian resurgence. As Asia and Africa had the bitter experience of imperialism and racialism even after their independence, they continued their struggle for eliminating this evil from the world.
Their independence by itself provided great inspiration to the nationalist movements in different parts of the world. They extended full support to the people under colonial domination and thus expedited the process of De-colonization. In abolishing racialism, Afro-Asian countries also played a significant role.
It was mainly due to their efforts in the United Nations and outside that the racialism in South Africa. Rhodesia. South-West Africa was debated, and nations practicing racialism were censured. In sum, Afro-Asian nations played a great role in ending imperialism and racialism from the earth.
3. Power Vacuum and Bipolorization:
The power vacuum concept gained prominence regarding these newly independent states, and the two superpowers started political, economic, and diplomatic moves to influence those areas. After World War II, the polarization of world politics was the chief feature.
With decolonization and imperial powers’ departure from these areas, the power vacuum was created in the newly independent states. They still required political, military, and economic support from outside powers. The race started between the United States and the Soviet Union to fill this power vacuum.
Consequently, some countries came under the umbrella of the United States and others of the Soviet Union. In this way, for some time in the post-war period, these nations became victims of bi polarization.
4. Theater of Cold War:
These states became the battlefield of ideological competition and the cold war. This competition certainly heightened Their international importance during the cold war. The sheer number of people in these areas gave them a potential influence that could not be overlooked. The two superpowers-the United States and the Soviet Union were actively courting for their favor.
After China emerged as a communist state, Russia felt communism could easily come in these underdeveloped countries. The idea that communism could only come to industrial states proved futile after the emergence of communist China as it was not industrially developed. Even then, communism came there easily.
In this way, Russia concentrated on these newly independent and underdeveloped countries to spread communism on the contrary. The US wanted to contain it. That is why the US started giving huge economic aids to these newly independent states so that communism could new spread to these countries. Thus the newly Independent states of Asia and Africa became the centers of ideological and political competition.
5. Emergence of Non-alignment:
A good number of am newly independent states had opted for a foreign policy at a minimum in a Cold War period. Some states did not want to phony of the two blocs. They had welcomed nonalignment as a symbol of new national prestige and dignity. They were not aligned to any bloc.
They had articulated a new identity through this foreign policy orientation. This approach had won the necessary international recognition at least from 1956, and since then, the number of non aligned countries increased Year after year. The non-alignment became a kind of movement and a force to be reckoned with in international relations.
With the increase in the number of non-aligned nations in Asia and Africa, the place and importance they occupied worldwide became considerable. The role played by them is well explained by Calvoooressi in the following-wows: They might at the very best prevent the cold war from spreading to these considerable areas by merely setting limits to the bipolar commitment they could reduce the occasions and areas of conflict. They could cause great powers to woo them under their combined importance, thus becoming a kind of lightning conductor in world politics.
More positively still. They might exert influence by the trim honored method of holding conferences to publicize their views or by the newer method of arguing and voting the General Assembly of the United Nations. In this last respect, the Indian voice was again decisive.18
Simultaneously, their economic dependence on major foreign powers has systematically increased with the passage of years. This dependence has been more on the West than in the East. This development was bound to have its repercussions on the steadfast operation of the policy of non-alignment. It has certainly weakened its sharpness, and it will not be surprising if it reduces it in the future into a pointless ritual
6 Concept of Third World:
Along with nonalignment, there developed the concept of the Third World. All newly independent nations of Asia, Africa, and Latin America came to be identified with the Third World. The term Third World was coined in the context of development. The first world was made up of western Europe, the USA, and Japan, characterized by competitive capitalism.
The second world is that of the Soviet bloc characterized by both Soviet and Chinese models’ socialism. The Third World, made up of those countries, recently emerged from a colonial past and seeking its own path to development and facing similar development problems. It comprises the poorer, economically less developed countries of the World.
These countries have evolved a common identity and a unity of purpose Le, soda-economic development. While borrowing from East and West, these countries adopt an independent development path and seek to remain non-aligned in the East-West conflict.
These less developed countries belong to the South and are now demanding new international economic order from the developed countries of the North. In this context, North-South conflict is in vogue in contemporary international relations.
7. Impact on U.N.O.:
The operation and working of the U.N.O have undergone a sea change due to Afro-Asian nations’ presence. The United Nations has also underlined their importance by Open aligning itself with the cause of their general revolution of rising expectations.
These countries have used the forum of the UN for eradicating. Evils of colonialism and racialism from the world By relying on it for solving their political, economic, and social problems, they have in a way enhanced the image and importance of the UN No doubt, a majority of the original members of the UN came horn the Western world more than 100 of its total membership of 179 are states that have gained independence
since the end of World War II. The eat-colonial powers and their friends have been increasingly defensive in the United Nations’ organs and agencies. The UN is no longer dominated by the Western powers but influenced by these new states who now have an effective say in this world organization.
By their sheer number, they have been able to play a prominent, if not dominant, role in the United Nations. Their increased participation in the deliberations rendered the working of the UN more democratic.
Calvocoressi rightly observes: The new states had hesitated at first in their attitudes towards the UN, not knowing whether it might turn out to be dominated by its European members, as the League of Nations had been, or by the West or by the great powers.
They feared that the new organization might be used to buttress colonialism or to sub~serve the purpose of the cold war, in either of which events they would have had little use for it, but after a little experience, they decided otherwise, and India, in particular, became prominent in its discussions and its field commissions and supplied units for emergency Operations-units without which those Operations could hardly have been contemplated.19
8. New Centers of Power:
New centers of power in South East Asia, the Far East, the Middle East, and Latin America are also created, whereas previously, the center of power was Europe. Even immediately after the Second World War center of power was mainly in Europe. Gradually new areas of international relations developed in Asia and Africa. For example, Japan, India, Israel, Iraq, Indonesia, South Korea, and oil-rich countries of the Middle-East have emerged as middle-class or economic powers.
These powers play an important role in world politics and tilt the balance of power in favor of this nation. This development also paved the way for the decline of bipolarism and the rise of multipolar or polycentrism.
9. Coming of Detente:
These newly emerging states formed the world public opinion and created a world situation in which superpowers had no other opinion but to follow peaceful coexistence. Although several factors were accounting for the process of detente, yet the contribution of Third World countries is no less significant and relevant. Till 1960 so many new states emerged, and mt of them followed the policy of non-alignment.
These states opposed the big powers if they did some Wrong, e.g., during the Korean War, these states Supported the USA and opposed the USSR and China. On the contrary, in the Vietnam case, this mm opposed the USA and supported the USSR. Under these circumstances, big powers considered it expedient to mend their fences and adopt peaceful coexistence.
How Colonial it is that if newly emerged Third World countries were instrumental in polarizing the world into two blocs and becoming the victim of the cold war, later on, these very countries contributed to the rise of a multipolar world and detente.
10. Regional Conflicts:
Many new nations had conflicts culminating into wars among themselves, marked by tension areas in different world regions. Some of these wars threatened to turn into a third world war. For example, the war between North and South Korea, North Vietnam and South Vietnam, Vietnam and Kampuchea, India and Pakistan, India and China, Ethiopia and Somalia and Arabs and Israel, Iraq and Iran, Iraq and Kuwait, etc. Some of these regional conflicts were long drawn out and the fate of some still hanging in the balance of the Arab Israel conflict.
These conflicts not only engaged the attention of the entire world but also kept U.N.O on tenterhooks. In almost all these regional conflicts, big powers were also covertly involved. This had adverse effects on international relations.
11. Regional Organizations:
To solve the regional problems and seek regional cooperation, these nations formed regional organizations after taking a cue from the European Economic Community (EEC). In the earlier stages, at the instance of the superpowers, they entered into military regional alliances.
However, latex-m economic cooperation became the guiding force for organizing such regional groupings afresh. Regional organizations can be grouped into two categories. First, the UN-sponsored the regional commission. As. ECE, ECLA, ECAFE, and ECA.
These regional commissions work under the overall supervision of the Economic and Social Council and are devoted to implementing the UN Beak and actual programming about them. Second, non-UN regional groupings. Important among them are ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) and the Colombo Plan, SAARC (South Asia Association of Regional Cmperationl, Q.A.U,(Organization of African Unity) and the Arab League,
The newly independent state is economically so weak that they are faced with a new problem of nee-colonialism or continuous economic domination by the big powers. Political independence has been achieved, but economically these third world countries are still dependent upon the capitalist powers or developed nations.
World price fluctuations, financial upheavals on stock markets, the inflation sweeping the world, growing indebtedness of new nations, fewer chances of their export to enter developed countries, their economic backwardness, the role of multinational corporations (MNCs) in these new nations, etc., all these hurt the economic condition of the Asian, African and Latin American countries.
The concept of nee-colonialism has been widely popularized in international relations by the Soviet Union after 1945. It is also attributed to the French Marxists in the late 19505 and came into use in 19605. It is explained as the continuation of the colonial system with a new face nevertheless formal granting political independence and sovereignty to emerging nations that fell prey to the indirect or covert type of domination by political, social, military and technical, forces. Still, economic domination occupies the central place in nee-colonialism.
Economic imperialism is that form of imperialism in which a country, though free from an imperialist country’s direct political control, indirectly dances to its tunes. Initially, it referred to the economic exploitation of the underdeveloped countries.
It involves the economic and financial domination of ex-colonial powers over the berated states and the subsequent influence of the United States and other developed powers over the latter. It is also possible that a consortium of financial interests 12.3 may exercise the control. Several international inertial concerns exercised control over newly emerged states.
At present most of the nations of Asia, Africa, and Latin America are politically free and sovereign. Apparently, they may be free, but they are actually the victims of big power tentacles. The so-called independent nations are actually not independent but: dependent. Britain exercised its economic influence over the Arab world using oil diplomacy in the post Second World War period American dollar.
Imperialism engulfed Western Europe and the newly independent nations of Asia and Africa. Latin American nations are all sovereign states, but their economic life being so fully dependent upon the United States that they cannot dare to adopt an independent policy. The East European states remained under Soviet control for many years.
The latest development is that East European countries, including Russia, are in the thick of economic crisis and are heavily banking upon Western aid to pull them out of this financial mess. No doubt, Western countries will come to their rescue but with a string having far-reaching economic and political implications in a way inviting nee-colonialism in these very countries.
Nee-colonialism is the continuation of exploitation by other means. It prevails in a bloc system or satellite system, economic shackles, a sphere of influence, and ideological subversions. The chief objective of nee-colonialism is to maintain imperialist profits from former colonial territories after political independence. It aims to have economic dominance in place of political and military dominance. Economic dominance is maintained through capital investments, loans, aid, unequal exchange, and finances directly controlled by colonial or developed powers of the North.
Noe-colonialism is sustained by several devices, which are briefly discussed below:
(i). Some of the newly independent states were politically so weak and stable that they could neither govern nor defend their countries effectively without outside support. Therefore, big powers stationed their armed forces in these states and acted as their sword arm, and this sword was a double-edged weapon. Whereas it was to protect these states from external aggression, it was also used to browbeat and bully these states. In these states, governments were pawns in big powers’ hands and were always at their mercy for survival.
(ii). Some of these countries were involved in regional conflicts and had to measure swords on the battlefields. They badly needed arms and ammunition and heavily depended on industrially developed countries for their sophisticated and modern military hardware. Thus arms trade increased manifold among these countries to the advantage of developed countries.
(iii). Another device to dominate third-world countries was the establishment of military bases in and around these countries. Melkote and Rao rightly explain: By controlling Asia’s strategic waterways, the US can exercise ultimate domination over all nations whose economic survival depends upon sea-borne imports. US bases from Japan and Okinawa to Taiwan, the Philippines, Singapore, and Diego Garcia keep the neighboring countries within the military orbit of the US.20
(iv). Foreign aid by developed and western countries to third world countries was another economic technique through which the donor countries influenced the monetary, fiscal, and commercial policies of the beneficiary countries. Foreign aid as a weapon was therefore used to reduce these countries into economic dependencies.
(v). Supranational agencies like the IMF, World Bank, etc., are in no way less responsible for perpetuating these countries’ economic dependencies. These international financial agencies are very much controlled and managed by the US and Western powers. They play a major role in decision making and laying down terms, conditions, and modalities for providing loans and aids. Many third world countries are in the grip of the debt trap of these agencies.
(vi). Multinational Corporations (MNCs) have also played a crucial role in establishing nee-colonialism. They are the Joint Stock Companies formed by investors of different countries to undertake an enterprise in developed and developing countries. With their huge financial resources, they operate across the national boundaries of many nations. Their chief characteristics are central direction, profit-making, and global domination. These M.N.Cs in Latin America, Africa, and Asia exercise a powerful influence on governments’ policy-making and even manipulate them to overthrow them if they did not dance to their tune.
13. Demand for N.I.E.O.
Having battered and bruised by the hardships and humiliations of nee-colonialism, there is a wave of consciousness among these countries for gaining—economic independence. Countries of Asia, Africa, and Latin America are now pressing for a New International Economic Order (NIEO) that will redress the present inequalities and injustices which place these developing countries at the mercy of the industrialized developed powers.
These countries are waging a persistent struggle both inside and outside the United Nations to uphold their just demands against stubborn opposition from the developed and rich neo-colonialist powers. A new dimension has been added to international relations in the form of North-South conflict.
The South’s poor and developing countries are demanding an end of the economic system devised by and in the rich and developed North’s interest. In its place, they want a New. International Economic Order (NIEO), which will be studied in detail in a subsequent chapter.
Thus, the newly independent states of Asia and Africa played a significant role in international relations in their own way. They internationalized international relations in a true sense; they presented new non-Western world views and gave new directions. The resurgence of Asia and Africa is a unique and remarkable phenomenon of post World War It period.
1. J.A. Robson, Imperialism: A Study (London. 1938) 3rd ed. p-7
2. E.M. Winslow, The pattern of Imperialism: A Study in the Theories of Power (New York. 1948), P-4.
3. Benjamin J. Cohen, The Question of Imperialism (New York, 1973). p.20.
5. For detail see, Stewart C. Easton, The Rise, and Fall of Western Colonialism (New York, 1964).
6. Cohen, n.3, p. 30.
7. EH. Carr, International Relations Between the Two World Wars 1919-1939 (New York 1966).
8. Charles W. Kegley, Jr. and Eugene R. Wittkopf, World Politics Trends and Transformation (New York 1981), p. 72. 9. Y. Chernyak Advocates of Colonialism (Moscow, 1968) p. 7.
10. Raghubir Chakravarti, International Relations (Calcutta, 1970), 288.
11. Elmer Plischke, “Microstates: Lilliputs in World Affairs,” The Futurist (February), p. 1925.
12. Kegley,Jr. and Wittkopf, n.,8 p. 73.
13. C. Barraclough, An Introduction to Contemporary History (London, 11967). p.153.
14. Ibidq p.41.
15. Op. cit. n.8, p.71.
16. Theodore A. Coulombs and James H. Wolfe. Introduction to International Relations Power and Justice (Newe Delhi. 1986,
17. Ibid, p. 297.
18. Peter Calvocoressi, World Politics sing: 1945 mew York, 1982) 4th and. p. 96.
20. Rama 5. Melkote & A. Narasimha Rae, International Relations (New Delhi, :1 a), p.140
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