True statesmen have always founded countries, united people and built cohesive societies through their cult, charisma and inclusive policies. History commemorates them as real heroes and their larger than life characters stand tall in the halls of fame and glow on the walls of glory. George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Winston Churchill, F.D. Roosevelt, Muhammad Ali Jinnah, and Mahatma Gandhi figure large in the luminaries of all times whose sole and sacred aim in life was to promote peace, preach tolerance and leave behind a legacy of love and coexistence. However, politicians generally choose to deepen the existing divides by using inflammatory language, such as hate speech. Fewer still use politics of hate and manifest pride and prejudice in their acts and utterances to score political gains. They fan the flames of hatred and make their societies more likely to experience political violence and terrorism. These infamous characters have done more harm to world than good by their myopic vision and exclusionist policies. That’s the conclusion drawn from various research studies conducted on the connection between political rhetoric and actual violence. Three political figures in modern history have shot to eminence by virtue of their jingoistic policies and racist doctrines. They are Adolf Hitler, Donald Trump and Nirendra Modi. Hitler looked at the world as an arena for the permanent struggle between people. He viewed the world through the prism of pride and prejudice and divided the world population into high and low races. He staunchly believed that the Germans belonged to the higher and nobler race and the Jews to the lower breed. He also had specific notions about other people whom he treated as the children of smaller gods. The Slavic people, for instance, were cast as inferior, predestined to be dominated. Hitler felt that the German people could only be strong if they were ‘pure’. As a consequence, people with hereditary diseases were considered harmful. These included people with physical or mental disabilities, as well as alcoholics and ‘incorrigible’ criminals. Once the Nazis had come to power, these ideas led to the forced sterilization and killing of human beings. During the Nazi dictatorship, German children are taught about the ‘racial doctrine’ and the superiority of the Aryan race. The ideas that Hitler developed in the 1920s remained more or less the same until his death in 1945. What did change is that in 1933, he was handed the power to start realizing them. During the 1930s, he did everything he could to expel the Jews from German society. Once the war had started, the Nazis resorted to mass murder. Nearly six million Jews were murdered during the Holocaust, resulting in the worst possible form of political prejudice, racial hatred and ethnic pride. Hitler looked at the world as an arena for the permanent struggle between people. He viewed the world through the prism of pride and prejudice and divided the world population into high and low races Likewise, the very recent gory act of a violent mob ransacking the citadel of American democracy demonstrated the ugly face of Donald Trump’s far-right populism. It was the last desperate attempt by the outgoing president to forcibly prevent the smooth transition of power to Joe Biden. Described as an insurrection, the shameless drama not only failed but also brought infamy to the man who controlled the destiny of the world’s most powerful nation for four years. It was certainly not a spontaneous act of violence but one that was incited by the president himself as well as a right-wing media wanting to overturn the result of the election. Trump was never willing to accept any electoral outcome that went against him. The attack took place when Congress was meeting to endorse the 2020 presidential election. Urged on by President Trump, the mob that forced its way into the Capitol disrupting sessions in both houses of Congress was said to largely belong to well-known militant white supremacist and hate groups. They believed that they could force the Congress to change the electoral result. They claimed they were there to bring a revolution. The violence forced lawmakers to evacuate the building. For many, these unfortunate events were reminiscent of the storming of the German parliament by the Nazis in the 1930s. President Donald Trump is not the only world leader who is accused of publicly denigrating people based on their racial, ethnic or religious backgrounds. Similarly, in the 2019 Polish election, incumbent president Andrzej Duda made demonization of the LGBT community as well as foreigners the centerpiece of his successful reelection campaign. Hate speech has also figured prominently in the recent rhetoric of political leaders in a variety of countries including Russia, Colombia, Israel, Egypt, Ukraine, the Philippines, Italy, Greece, Sri Lanka and Iraq. Indeed, since the beginning of Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign and its dominating thrust on racial pride and ethnic prejudice, domestic terrorism has more than doubled in the United States. Following religiously the divisive political doctrines of Hitler and Trump, Nirendra Modi has not left far behind either. In India, not only has he made lives difficult for all others than Hindus but has also practiced Hindutva in letter and spirit. In the 2019 parliamentary campaign in India, politicians from the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party targeted Muslims as part of a widespread electoral strategy to galvanize Hindu nationalism. Like a wolf in sheep clothing, he has ignited fire against Muslims at home and against Pakistan across the globe. The recent shocking disclosures by EU DisinfoLab about India’s camouflaged use of media, NGOs, fake identities, impersonation and dubious use of big names to malign Pakistan has truly surprised many. This masqueraded and fraudulent media business has been run by Indian actors in over 100 countries, particularly, targeting the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva wherein it got 10 NGOs accredited so as to promote anti-Pakistan agenda. Similarly, in Brussels where it cunningly foxed MEPs into criticizing Pakistan, especially on human rights. The actors orchestrating this nasty network are directly tied to the creation of three informal groups in the European Parliament – the South Asia Peace Forum, the Baloch Forum and Friends of Gilgit-Baltistan – to organize press conferences and events around and within the European Parliament to defame Pakistan. Coinciding with this is yet another watershed development. In November, Pakistan handed over its dossier on India’s terror campaign to the United Nations, the P5 members of the U.N. Security Council and the Organization of Islamic Countries claiming that it had “irrefutable evidence” of India financing, training, harboring and supplying weapons to terrorists operating in and against Pakistan. India, under Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has fast been drifting towards extremism and an exclusionist rule, bordering fascism. In August 2019, the Modi government unilaterally and arbitrarily revoked Article 370 of India’s constitution, stripping IOJ&K of the autonomy guaranteed by Indian constitution, in utter disregard to United Nations resolutions. In 2019, India also passed the controversial Citizenship (Amendment) Act legislation that offers preferential treatment to non-Muslim immigrants from certain neighboring countries as they seek Indian citizenship on grounds of religious discrimination. In the recent past, it has also promulgated laws allowing non-residents and non-Muslims from across India to buy land and property in Jammu and Kashmir with a malicious intent to change the demography of the Indian occupied Jammu & Kashmir (IOJ&K). Unfortunately, these disclosures have also exposed the myth of justice and fair play boasted by the pseudo champions of human rights in the US and Europe which despite gross human rights violations in Indian Occupied Jammu and Kashmir have kept mum over the Modi government’s inhuman actions. Shamelessly, the whole world media showed the gory drama of the inhuman lockdown of Occupied Kashmir, and the brutal killing of innocent Muslims by RSS goons in full sight of the law-enforcement agencies. Likewise, France, the so-called champion of secularism, quick to punish Muslim women in hijab but conveniently ignored the Citizens Amendment Act (CAA) or National Register of Citizenship (NRC) which specifically discriminates against Muslims. Same is the pitiable plight of over 1.9 million citizens in Assam who have been declared illegal for being Bengali Muslims. Obviously, France would not have criticized India since it was in the middle of finalizing the Rafael deal with a staggering amount worth $5 billion bill. In the ultimate analysis, it can safely be inferred that in order to ensure lasting peace and a fairer socio-economic world order, we desperately need statesmen who promote love not hate, unity not division, inclusion not prejudice, and compassion not pride. Those who live will see it happening! The writer is a civil servant by profession, a writer by choice and a motivational speaker by passion!