Thursday, January 1, 2015

Leadership styles of President Putin and Mahinda, though loathed by the West, are increasingly recognised as prerequisites for development and strong countries

Stability provided by strong leadership        

In one of my previous posts I highlighted that one of the foremost decisive factors that would decide the future course of post-war Sri Lanka would be its stability. This stability is, by default, ensured by a strong leadership who should be a strong personality plus bold in his actions and taking critical decisions with regard to the national interest.  On the other hand this strong and bold personality should equally be strengthened by the powers vested in his office: in other words Executive Presidency with full powers as far as Sri Lanka is concerned.

In the last 05 years President Mahinda has been able to fit into the criteria mentioned above. Despite numerous challenges that he had to face such as the sheer amount of enmity shown to him by powerful international actors especially by the West both during the war time and the post-war period, his success has been outstanding. (The sustained and vigorous effort by the West for a regime change has resulted in Mythriapala Sirisena coming into contest at the upcoming Presidential Election) This very quality of resolute personality of him and the boldness displayed taking difficult decisions have paid dividends in his efforts in successfully winning a war against ruthless terrorism, rehabilitating and reconstructing post war Sri Lanka. The degree of development that Sri Lanka has been experiencing in the last few years is evident of his resolute character.

There are many world leaders, including some from Europe, who admire President Mahinda's strong and inspiring leadership. They are especially inspired by the exemplary leadership displayed by president Mahinda in eliminating terrorism which was claimed to have been impossible and bringing long awaited peace to the county. They have also been amazed by the scale of development taking place in the post-war Sri Lanka.        

A strong Russia under Putin torments the West  

Emergence of these type of strong leadership in any state which does not dance to the whims and fancies of the West is mercilessly targeted and vilified. There have been numerous examples throughout the world which have become unfortunate victims of the West simply due to the bold stands taken by those states not bowing to the West. The best current example is Russia whose leader Vladimir Putin is loathed by the West and is a victim of a nasty destabilising project. Rise of Putin as a strong leader when Russia was in a total shambles state after a disastrous rule by the post-Soviet President Boris Yeltsin was a turning point in Russia's resurgence. A resurgent Russia under Putin is a thorn in the flesh to the West and is being pushed to the wall with NATO expansion at its very backyard. Though Russia is no longer a great power following the collapse of the Soviet Union it is still an influential regional power who wants to maintain its sphere of influence in the region which came under the Soviet Union. This sustained destabilising project on Russia aimed at eliminating strongman Putin as the president culminated with igniting a coup in Ukraine toppling its pro-Russian president. Now the pro-West Ukrainian regime is being used to destabilize Russia. This was followed by imposition of sanctions which have had debilitating effect on Russian economy.

"Dictators", "Autocrats" and "Despots"

Another popular modus operandi has been the branding of the leaders of those countries as "Dictators", "Autocrats" and "Despots" etc which is a part of isolating the countries internationally or making them international pariah states. At the same time, however, a blind eye is turned towards some real autocratic, repressive and despotic leaders who are in good books with the West and have for long been suppressing their people and running far worse corrupt regimes.  Saudi Arabia, military regimes of Pakistan, the former and the present president of Egypt Hosni Mubarak and Gen. Al Sisi respectively are cases in point.                                            

Vladimir Putin, Europe's new hero!  

However, what the West can no longer keep a lid on is that these types of leaderships such as Russia have inspired the people around the world. This has been the case in Europe in particular. There has been a growing tendency in Europe to rally around such strong leaders. After Charles de Gaulle and Margaret Thatcher Europe has not seen such leaders. In the backdrop of Western Europe which is experiencing the economic downturn and EU's austerity policies, the need of such leaders are strongly felt than ever. Recently Marine Le Pen, the leader of France's Front National party, admired Putin saying that Putin has managed to restore pride and contentment to a great nation. (Front National party in France secured the first place in France in the EU's parliamentary elections in 2014). On the other hand Matteo Salvini, the head of the rightist Lega Nord and a rising star in Italian politics, signed a deal in last October between his and Vladimir Putin's United Russia party based on what he called common values. Le Pen and Matteo Salvini are only just two leaders in Europe who support Putin.

Both strong leadership and presidency will shape Sri Lanka's future

As noted earlier these dramatic leadership roles being played by both the Presidents Vladimir Putin and Mahinda Rajapaksha would have been significantly curtailed hadn't they been empowered by the powerful office of presidency which is common both in Russia and Sri Lanka. (Executive presidency system has greatly been beneficial to countries such as USA, France and China too).

While the styles of leadership displayed by President Mahinda are increasingly now recognised in the world over as a prerequisite to develop countries and ward off the machinations by the vested interested quarters such as the West hell bent to achieve their ulterior motives, it is up to we Sri Lankans to decide whether we are opting to put the country's forward march to a full stop and go back to backwardness.        

PS: Strong leadership style displayed by Prime Minster Modi of India is also widely admired world over and acknowledged to be a prime prerequisite to put India on a strong footing economically.


Sridhar Chandrasekaran said...

You have such an interesting blog. Thanks for sharing, I enjoyed reading your posts. All the best for your future blogging journey.

Jack Point said...

The comparison with Putin is very apt both follow similar policies and methods.

Whether this is the best thing for us is another question.

Have explained more here:

Anonymous said...

thanks for your time.