A look at double standard policy from one angle

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A double standard is a term in the politics featuring discriminatory approaches to assessment of countries` actions. This term was for the first time used in the English language in the middle of the 19th century. It earlier meant unequal moral demands towards men and women, and was used in theological discussions and measurement methods in science. This term appeared in the Russian language in 1950s. This term was applied in the USSR to indicate to racial and class inequality in capitalist countries.

The definition of Concise Oxford English Dictionary is more laconic: double standard is a rule or a principle applied more strictly to some people than others (or oneself): “A double standard is a rule or principle which is unfairly applied in different ways to different people or groups.”  Policy of double standards is a situation, when the estimation of the same actions of different subjects varies depending on each of these subjects` relations with the estimator. Thus the actions of "friendly" (loyal to the estimator), are justified, but the same actions of "aliens" are blamed and considered inadmissible.

In international relations, this policy usually takes the form of charge of unwanted in violation of principles, conventions, obligations, "violation of universal values", "violation of human rights", "deviation of international rules". At the same time absolutely similar one`s own actions or actions of allies are demonstratively ignored.

The double standard in world politics becomes more evident in the second half of the last century. This process was accompanied by changes in rhetoric of western politicians. In fact, the double policy standard is based on utilizing some terms and their update in accordance with objectives.

Beginning from 80s of the 20th century, the term “human rights” occupied a more important place in a lexicon of western politicians and was utilized in the context of the “democratic society” term as a criterion of positive and negative estimation of political actors. Some more terms were used to this end too. Such maneuvers in politics are utilized against the political will of some country. More attention is paid to the following areas:

  • - protection of human values;
  • - principle of self-determination of nations;
  • - human rights;
  • - freedom of speech;
  • - freedom of conscience;
  • - rights of national minorities;
  • - protection of small ethnic groups;
  • - freedom of political and economic activity etc.


A pressure mechanism is formed by using such terms including, for example, the “political prisoner” term. Let us say that if a person is sued in some country for violation of some law, attempt to trigger unrest, disturbances, hatred, intolerance etc, “political prisoner” term emerges and a country faces pressure. In much the same way, a principle of self-determination of nations is used for different purposes.

In modern international relations, double standard policy mechanisms are, as a rule, used by international organizations, various legal entities, media, political and public organizations. Assessment of the policy follows information prepared in the mentioned structures.

For example, some international human rights organization appraises bloody March events in Armenia not as violation of rights of those protesting against election results but as protection of the existing political regime. Similar processes in Azerbaijan are quite the contrary directed against the political authorities.

As a result, the other international organization places Armenia much higher in terms of human potential development, human rights record etc. At last, all these fragments are concentrated in a “single political-ideological center” to build a negative image of a state. The aim is to make a political decision in line with their own interests. For example, the fact of aggression of Armenia against Azerbaijan is filled on paper with such a sense that it does not go further than a formal fixation. One delicate trick (deceptive ideological technique) of the western political thought should be noted here.

The double standard policy is based not on the fact itself but its interpretation in accordance with political interests. It is referred to as a “factual approach”. It means that the event is not presented as a fact but its factual presentation is given.

Let us say that the Armed Forces of Armenian occupied Nagorno-Karabakh and committed the Khojaly genocide. There are enough facts proving it. If these facts are taken as evidence disclosing the nature of the event, the decision on the genocide will come automatically. But instead, they present a fact linking it with various contexts.

For example, instead of accepting the fact and punishing the perpetrator, it is presented in the context of “universal reconciliation”, “look into the future”, “do not make peoples enemies for each other” and other biased terms. As a result, the event is partially condemned but without prosecution of committers. Thus, the society faces difficulties in realizing such tangled and complicated “mental tricks.” In addition, “evaluators” instill in society their ideological theses. At the same time, false international image of a state is formed and protection of the society`s integrity is questioned.

International organizations play a special role in such processes. Striking a “solemn pose”, these organizations adopt documents as the highest instance. These documents indicate that territorial integrity of Georgia must be ensured without stressing the need to ensure territorial integrity of Azerbaijan.

We witnessed it in one of the European Union`s latest documents. For a couple of years, they played “political prisoner” games with no actions seen against Armenia. PACE representatives used to come here one-by-one to visit the most remote villages of Azerbaijan, houses of representatives of national minorities, and were curious about them.

However, no one cares where Azerbaijanis from Armenia “escaped” to. Today, nobody mentions rights of some national minorities in Armenia. Official Tbilisi did not even face slight criticism for years-long discrimination against our compatriots in Georgia. Representatives of international organizations were not seen when inquiring about problems of our compatriots living there.

The US congress annually provides large financial assistance to Armenia. It goes down one year at the best but increases the next one. The assistance is even provided on various pretexts to the illegal regime in Nagorno-Karabakh. Nevertheless, there is the other attitude to regimes in South Ossetia and Abkhazia. Such examples are numerous. No matter how long the list is, the core of the problem does not change – West`s double standard policy towards Azerbaijan goes on with the same intensity.

Co-chairmanship in the OSCE Minsk Group is held by the West (USA and France) in tandem with Russia. The attitude here is not much different from the position of other organizations. The only dynamics is a show created during trips of rotating co-chairs to the region with no tangible results produced. As the French say “change everything if you wanna keep stability”, that is, regularly replace co-chairs if you wanna keep the double standard policy stable. However, everything has its end. The double standard policy will produce a boomerang effect in the end.

New Times


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