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Q4. What are the salient features of Non-aligned movement?/ What non-alignment stands for

Non-alignment upholds certain values- while opposing certain other values.

  1. Non-alignment stands- for dissociation from military alliances that came into existence as a result of rivalry between the super-powers. Military alliances attempt to create spheres of influence, promote arms race and thus increase tension in the world.

It was on account of the membership of military alliances such as SEATO and CENTO that India opposed that entry of Pakistan into non-aligned movement at the time of the Colombo Conference held in 1976. It is now after having given up membership of military pacts that Pakistan could be admitted as a member at the Havana Conference held in 1979.

Rather, the alliances of which Pakistan was a member, have disintegrated. This has proved the truth of the contention that non- alignment is gaining ground against military alliances.

  1. Non alignment recognizes that existence of a nation depends upon seeking its own national interest. It is in this context that Nehru stressed that your relations with a particular country can be more cordial and friendly.
  2. non-alignment is a synthesis of nationalism and internationalism. The ideals of the leaders of non- alignment were shaped by the traditions of their ancient civilisation as also the Western liberal ideas. It is the Gandhian concept of non-violence at the national level that was extended by Nehru to the international plane through the police of peaceful co-existence and non- involvement with military rivalry of big powers. Non-alignment was born out of conviction and sheer necessity of survival of the newly independent countries.
  3. Non-alignment is concerned with the maintenance of peace in the world and the non aligned countries are against the use of force in settling international disputes. Peace is considered necessary for the eradica­tion of poverty and squalor from the world.
  4. The root characteristic feature of the non-aligned is the independence of judgment which the non-aligned countries enjoy on international issues. They judge every issue on its own merit without any dictation from any other country. This has been asserted by many leaders of the non-aligned countries.

Nehru declared that non-alignment is “a policy of acting according to our best judgment. P.M. of Burma wanted to retain his “freedom of action in foreign affairs.” Nkrumah of Ghana pointed out that “we must be free to judge issues on their merits.”

  1. Non-aligned countries believe in a democratic approach to international rela­tions by all the countries of the world.
  2. Non-aligned countries are opposed to racialism and colonialism in any form. It was to condemn Dutch action on Indonesia and plead for the freedom of Indo­nesia that Nehru called a conference in New Delhi in 1954. It was at the Bandung Conference held in 1955 where the representatives from Asia and Africa condemned racialism and colonialism.

Non-alignment opposed to racialism as practiced in South Africa.

  1. Influence politics differs from power politics in the sense that influence believes in persuasion while power lies in compelling other by the use of force to do what he would not have done otherwise.

In spite of the fact that the new nations have obtained freedom, they are still dominated by the highly developed countries in the economic sphere. They are tied in the economic system that believes in exploitation of the poor and underdeveloped countries.

In spite of the fact that these new nations have made developmental plans, they have not been able to make a little progress. The produce of the poor, underdeveloped, countries is bought by the affluent nations at a very low rate, while the finished goods prepared from that very stuff imported from the underdeveloped countries is exported to them at very high prices. This leads to deficit in balance of payments.

The aid given by the developed countries to the under­developed nations is eaten back by the former to meet balance of pay­ments gap. The non-aligned countries plead for the replacement of this old system by a New International Economic System.

Concern for the new economic system was expressed for the first time at the Conference held at Algiers in 1970. Consequently, many of the new nations provid­ing raw-materials decided to come together and act in unison to increase the prices of their commodities.

It was this strategy at Algiers that gave birth to the demand for a New International Economic Order. This strategy which was later used with great effect by the OPEC (Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries) provided a major threat for world capitalist powers.

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