I know from my own country’s history that the US does care for democracy. More on that later. It’s just that expediency during the Cold War drove them to form alliances with capitalist and hence ant-communist dictators. What I see is the big picture. Those capitalist dictatorships that were allied with the US eventually became democracies. Taiwan, S Korea, Philippines are some examples.neverfail wrote: ↑Tue Mar 30, 2021 6:06 pmSorry Cass but I have to partly disagree.
Cassowary, I have seen too many instances over the years of US government policy lending support to tyrannies to believe they would now care a shit about Taiwan democracy - except insofar as this serves as a useful propaganda tool. More likely US policymakers treasure Taiwan for its geostrategic position off the coast of mainland Chinma and adjacent to Japan and the Philippines.
On the other hand, Socialist dictatorships allied with the USSR remained dictatorships. N Korea, Cuba are examples. The case of Venezuela is interesting. There was a people’s power type protests to topple the regime but it failed because of Russian and Cuban support.
Now about Singapore. Our LKY was a strongman despite the fig leaf of holding elections. During the Malayan Emergency, the British implemented detention without trial as an emergency measure to prevent a communist takeover which would have been bloody. Most people supported that.
The ISA remained in force after independence and the Emergency was officially over. I have argued that it was declared over not because the threat of communist subversion was over but for political reasons. LKY had used it against political opponents who were front men of the communists.
But this threat intimidated would be opposition leaders from emerging and LKY could rule with total power. The Americans wanted Singapore to develop into a full fledged democracy and so encouraged opposition leaders to emerge.
A US diplomat, probably CIA, met with Frances Seow, a disgruntled former ally of LKY, who was thinking of standing as a opposition candidate in the elections. This enraged LKY and he ordered Seow to be detained. This brought a storm of protests from the Americans. Seow was later released.
Seow was obviously not a communist. Nor was he violent in his pursuit of power. LKY had stepped across the line. But this was the last time the ISA was invoked to detain without trial an opposition leader. LKY treasured good relations with the US to moderate his behaviour.