ROLE OF SINGAPORE, MALAYSIA AND THAILAND IN WORLD POLITICS
The distinction between the liberal and the democratic aspects of liberal democracy has long been a topic of scholarly discussion, but the term “illiberal democracy” is not so old. It was first introduced by Fareed Zakaria in 1997, in an influential article that he wrote for Foreign Affairs. Zakaria argued that in the past virtually all modern democracies were liberal democracies. In fact, in most Western democracies a commitment to constitutionalism, the rule of law, and individual rights had preceded the broadening of the franchise to encompass universal suffrage. Thus, the world's leading democratic regimes had been liberal before they became democratic. Around the world, democratically elected regimes are routinely ignoring limits on their power and depriving citizens of basic freedoms. From Peru to the Philippines, we see the rise of a disturbing phenomenon: illiberal democracy. It has been difficult to recognize because for the last century in the West, democracy - free and fair elections - has gone hand in hand with constitutional liberalism—the rule of law and basic human rights. But in the rest of the world, these two concepts are coming apart. Democracy without constitutional liberalism is producing centralized regimes, the erosion of liberty, ethnic competition, conflict, and war. The international community and the Asian-Pacific countries must end their obsession with balloting and promote the gradual liberalization of societies.