cta-image

Donate

Donations from readers like you allow us to do what we do. Please help us continue our work with a monthly or one-time donation.

Donate Today
cta-image

Subscribe Today

Subscribe to receive daily or weekly MEMRI emails on the topics that most interest you.
Subscribe
cta-image

Request a Clip

Media, government, and academia can request a MEMRI clip or other MEMRI research, or ask to consult with or interview a MEMRI expert.
Request Clip
memri
Mar 23, 2023
Share Video:

Former UK MP George Galloway At Beijing's 'Forum On Democracy': Western Democracies Are Going Backwards, While China Is Moving Forward; In The West, Political Parties Are Two Cheeks Of The Same Backside

#10192 | 04:03
Source: CGTN Network (China)

Former British Member of Parliament George Galloway compared Western democracies to the Chinese political system in a speech delivered at the March 23, 2023 Beijing Second International Forum on Democracy. He said that as a six-term member of the British Parliament, he can say that Western democracies have a "surfeit of the form of democracy, but a form that is increasingly devoid of the content of democracy." Galloway said that Western democracies are "going backwards, while China is going forwards," and explained that Western democracies are experiencing increased poverty, while China is raising people out of poverty. He stated that Western democracies have the "form" of elections, and you can choose between parties, but both parties stand for the same things and therefore, choosing between two political parties is like choosing between "two cheeks of the same backside," while in China you cannot change the ruling party, but it is possible to change the policies. Galloway said that China has achieved more in the last few weeks than "decades of Western domination" by bringing Saudi Arabia and Iran together.

The speech was posted on the official YouTube account of Chinese official broadcaster CGTN. Other speakers at the forum included Mushahid Hussain Sayed, chairman of Pakistan's Senate Defense Committee, José Luis Centella, president of the Communist Party of Spain, Fred M'membe, president of the Socialist Party of Zambia, former Japanese Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama, and Professor Zheng Yongnian of the Chinese University of Hong Kong.

George Galloway: "You know, we have a surfeit of the form of democracy in Western countries, but a form which is increasingly devoid of the content of democracy. I speak as a six term Member of the British Parliament, which likes to call itself the mother of parliaments.

[...]

"But what is the achievement of that democracy? We have a saying, I'm sure you have it too. The proof of the pudding is in the eating. What are we eating in our Western democracy? Well, less and less is the first answer. We are going backwards, while China is going forwards. China is raising people out of poverty. Our system is putting people into poverty. France is in flames. Britain is shivering with cold.

[...]

"In the United States, 80 million people have no health insurance.

[...]

"Your system is the one that is moving forward. Therefore, to what extent is our democracy superior to yours? Because we have the form of this ancient democracies. In these ancient democracies, we have two cheeks of the same backside. Two sides of the same coin. Sure, you can vote for this party or that party, but both parties stand for the same thing and the same program, essentially, of neoliberal economics and imperialism abroad. What kind of choice is that? As I heard a wise man, a Chinese man, say on television, in China you cannot change the party, but you can change the policies. In Western democracies, you can change the party, but you cannot change the policies.

[...]

"China achieved more in the last few weeks in bringing together Saudi Arabia and Iran, the schools of the Sunni and Shi'a branches of Islam. China achieved more in the last few weeks than decades of Western domination.

[...]

"Well, I think I speak for a growing number of people who do not yet know, and we must work to tell them, what whole process people's democracy means. They don't yet know that. But they do know their own democracy isn't working, because it isn't producing anything for them and it is sowing not just disharmony, but hatred, violence, bloodshed, and war around the world."

Share this Clip:

Help Fight Extremism - Support MEMRI

MEMRI is a 501(c)3 organization. All donations are tax-deductible and kept strictly confidential.