CLEVELAND, OH - JULY 18: Presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump gives a thumbs up to the crowd after his wife Melania delivered a speech on the first day of the Republican National Convention on July 18, 2016 at the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio. An estimated 50,000 people are expected in Cleveland, including hundreds of protesters and members of the media. The four-day Republican National Convention kicks off on July 18. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
© Getty

Sir, Edward Luce has written on many occasions about the dangers of Donald Trump’s presidential ambitions, but surely he goes too far in tying western dignity to its democratic processes (“ Trump leads the west’s flight from dignity”, Comment, July 18). It is an exaggeration to suggest that Mr Trump’s campaign threatens to destroy western dignity — whatever that term means — as the past few decades have already undermined it.

If there is a case to be made for the loss of western dignity and standing in the world surely Mr Luce does not need to look further than George W Bush and Tony Blair, who misled both their own people and the world in selling the 2003 invasion of Iraq. And there are the titans of the investment banks who almost caused the collapse of the global financial system with their recklessness, yet accepted bailouts and continued to pay themselves bonuses.

We do not know yet what a President Trump would do — but he would not be the first president to demean his office. Furthermore, it could be argued that his opponent Hillary Clinton, given her initial support for the Iraq invasion and her role in pushing for intervention in Libya, is more associated with western disasters and the loss of dignity in the eyes of the rest of the world.

Chandran Nair

Founder and Chief Executive, Global Institute for Tomorrow, Hong Kong

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