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IRAQ: Democracy and the Role of Foreign Intervention. Presentation by: Carlos Aguirre. Pols522 Dr. Buckley March 10, 2014. Thesis & Questions. Thesis :

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IRAQ: Democracy and the Role of Foreign Intervention

Presentation by:

Carlos Aguirre

Pols522

Dr. Buckley

March 10, 2014


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Thesis & Questions

  • Thesis:

    • In a situation where the domestic conditions are incongruous with the process of democratization, Democracy in Iraq is possible if and only if coalition forces and the new Iraq government can successfully work together to establish and maintain order and security.

  • Questions:

    • What is a Democracy?

    • Are the preconditions for democracy present in Iraq?

    • If domestic conditions are conductive to democracy, why is there a need for foreign intervention?

    • Is there a minimum level of security necessary to democratization?

    • Is the US capable of providing enough security long enough to enable the domestic forces supporting democracy to succeed?

    • Is Democracy ultimately possible in Iraq?


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Introduction

Source: Pei, Minxin, Sara Kasper. “Lessons from the Past: The American Record on Nation Building.” Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. May 2003


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Introduction

  • JamesMeernik

    • 3-year pre/post-intervention analysis

      • 48% US military interventions left no change at all in the existing political system.

    • HOWEVER!!

      • US Intervention to non-intervention comparison

        • Countries who experienced US military intervention saw greater movement toward democracy.

        • 15% more likely to democratize

    • BUT!!!

      • Violence directed at US intervention forces  diminution in democratization process

  • Counter-arguments:

    • “An Aggressive strategy to install liberal democracy in Iraq will most inevitably fail” (Exiting Iraq)

    • The new regime will be a Restricted Democracy (Sorensen, 39)

      • More democratic than the first, but not yet fully democratic.

        • Seesawing between authoritarianism and frail democracy.

    • “Nation-building attempts by outside powers are notable mainly for their disappointments, not their triumphs” (Minxin Pei, 1)


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Democracy

  • What is a Democracy?

  • Greek:

    • Demos: People, Kratos: Rule

  • Liberal Democratic Theory:

    • A form of government in which people rule.

  • Mill: “Plural Voting:

    • Participation & Equality  Liberty and Self Development Democracy

    • Complete Equality between the sexes

  • Cosmopolitan Democracy

    • David Held

      • The body, welfare, culture, civic associations, the economy, and the sphere of regulatory and legal institutions.

  • Joseph Schumpeter

    • Democracy is simply a method for choosing political leadership


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Democracy

Do elections mean Iraq is now a Democracy?

Elections are an important benchmark in progress toward democracy. (Dubbins, 107)


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Domestic Pre-requisites

Security Pre-requisites

  • Unofficial estimates on Iraqi civilian deaths: 15,000 to almost 100,000 since the March 2003 invasion.

  • 1,300+ US troops have been killed in the same period. http://icasualties.org/oif/

  • “There can be no economic or political development is there is no security “ (Dubbins)


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Domestic Pre-requisites

  • Economic Pre-requisites

    • Economic Development

      • The more well-to-do a nation, the greater the chances that it will sustain democracy.

    • Industrialization

      • The more people employed, the more democratic a country.

    • Urbanization

      • More democratic countries are statistically more urbanized.

    • Education

      • The better educated the population of a country, the better the chances for democracy.

      • “Education, if it does not make men good citizens, makes it a lot easier for them to become so.” (p.79)

    • Increased Wealth

      • Changes the social conditions of workers and affects the political role of the middle class

    • General Income Level

      • Affects the receptivity to democratic political tolerance norms.

      • Affects the development of “universalistic” norms.

Main Source: Lipset, Seymour. Some Social Requirements for Democracy.

The American Political Science Review, Vol.53, No.1 (Mar 1959)


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Domestic Pre-requisites

Economic Summary:

GDP/PPP (2003 est.): $38.79 billion; per capita $1,600.

Real growth rate: –20%.

Inflation: 27.5%.

Unemployment: n.a.

Arable land: 12%.

Agriculture: wheat, barley, rice, vegetables, dates, cotton; cattle, sheep.

Labor force: 7.8 million (2004 est); agriculture n.a., industry n.a., services n.a.

Industries: petroleum, chemicals, textiles, construction materials, food processing.

Natural resources: petroleum, natural gas, phosphates, sulfur.

Exports: $7.542 billion (f.o.b., 2003, est.): crude oil.

Imports: $6.521 billion (f.o.b., 2003 est.): food, medicine, manufactures.


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Domestic Pre-requisites

  • Political Pre-requisites:

    • Setting up basic civil rights

    • Democratic Autonomy (Sorensen, 10)

    • Direct participation

    • Socio-economic rights

    • A bill of rights.

  • Robert Dahl

    • Competition among parties for political power

    • Participation in the selection of leaders

    • Fair elections

    • Freedom sufficient to support political parties


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Domestic Pre-requisites

  • Political Pre-requisites

  • Lipset

    • Intermediary Organizations (Mass Society Theory)

      • A source of counterbalancing power

      • State control

      • Source of communicating ideas and opinions

      • Help increase the level of participation and interest in politics

    • Legitimacy & Effectiveness

      • Effectiveness is the actual performance of a political system.

      • Legitimacy: the ability to persuade people into believing that the existing political institutions are the most appropriate for society.

    • Legitimacy & Cleavage

      • Cleavage: Conflict among different groups within a political system

    • Cross-cutting Politically relevant affiliations

      • Push/pull factors

      • A stable democracy requires moderate tension among competing political forces

    • Two-party system

      • Parties are necessarily broad coalitions.

    • Territory-based elections

      • Better than systems of proportional representation.

    • Federalism

      • Increases the opportunity for multiple sources of cleavage.


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Domestic Pre-requisites

  • Social Pre-requisites

    • One background condition: National Unity; must be in place before it is possible to conceive of a transition. (Sorensen, 41)

    • Homogeneity versus Heterogeneity:

      • Is social homogeneity necessary for democracy? Yes, perhaps…

        • Homogeneity helps (Somalia, Haiti, and Afghanistan)…but is not a necessary condition (i.e. Bosnia, Kosovo). (Dubbins, 161-62)

        • The wealth supplied by commerce, together w/ an unusually homogenous population, allowed Athens to complete democratization. (Doyle, p54)

        • “A high degree of ethnic homogeneity (such as in Japan and Germany) makes a country more suitable for nation-building” (Pei, 4)

        • “Ethnically fragmented countries pose extraordinary challenges because they lack a common national identity” (4)


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Domestic Pre-requisites

  • Demographic Information

    (2004 estimates)

  • Population:25,374,691

  • Ethnic groups:Arab 75%-80%, Kurdish 15%-20%, Turkoman, Assyrian or other 5%

  • Religions:Muslim 97% (Shi'a 60%-65%, Sunni 32%-37%), Christian or other 3%

  • Legal system:based on civil and Islamic law under the Iraqi Interim Government (IG) and Transitional Administrative Law (TAL)


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Domestic Pre-requisites

Conditions

Initial Possible Consequences

Additional Consequences

Open Class System

Economic Wealth

Equalitarian Value System

Capitalistic Economy

Literacy

High Participation in

Voluntary Organizations

Open Class System

Equalitarian Value System

Political Apathy

Bureaucracy

Mass Society

Literacy

Democracy

Based on Seymour Lipset’s model of Democracy


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Comparative Cases of Democratization

  • Grenada Case

    • Clearly illegal

    • The invasion violated the territorial integrity of Grenada…trampled on the charters of the UN Constitution and OAS…the US President had once again usurped the constitutional power of Congress to declare war…allies in Europe were distressed.

  • Somalia

    • There can be no economic or political development without security.

    • “In a lawless environment, neither production nor trade can occur.

  • Afghanistan

    • In the absence of pervasive security, the prospects of widespread economic recovery or political development are very limited.

  • Iraq

    • Bosnia and Kosovo are the most comparable in terms of ambition

    • Unlike them though, Iraq is an unstable and undemocratic region.

    • Security challenges are divided into 4 cats: (172)

      • Expressive Violence

      • Instrumental Violence

      • Iraqi Groups

      • Foreign Intervention


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The Role of Foreign Intervention

  • American View on Foreign Intervention

    • Woodrow Wilson fought WWI to “make the world safe for democracy.”

      • Sent troops to Mexico to “teach the Mexicans the meaning of Democracy”

    • Reagan and Lebanon

      • “If America were to walk away…what chance would there be for a…democratic Lebanon”

      • Grenada “was a military operation to restore order and democracy.

    • George Bush and Panama

      • “The goals of the US have been to defend democracy in Panama”


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The Role of Foreign Intervention

  • Mill:

    • “it would be a great mistake to export freedom to a foreign people that was not in a position to win it on its own.” (Doyle, 395)

    • “A people given freedom by a foreign intervention would not be able to hold on to it.”

      • Outcomes of such a government:

        • They would begin to rule as they did their previous gov.

        • They would collapse in an ensuing civil war.

        • The intervenors would have continually to send in foreign support.

  • Walzer :

    • Foreign Interventions to achieve a revolution are inauthentic, ineffective, and are likely to cause more harm than good”

    • One can intervene for humanitarian reasons, to halt what appears to be a gross violation of the rights to the survival of a population.

      • Must “Shock the conscience of mankind” (Walzer)


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The Role of Foreign Intervention

  • 3 Justifications for humanitarian intervention (Doyle, p.412)

    • Invasion due to a “clear oppression”

    • Rescue will reliably help suffering

    • Humanitarian Intervention cannot be an excuse for imperial aggression.

    • Humanitarian Intervention must be proportional to the suffering.

To justify intervention in the name of high ideals such as promoting and restoring democracy, peace-keeping, serving humanitarian purposes and protecting non-combatant minorities from persecution.

?

Why is Foreign Intervention necessary

To maintain Kant’s Perpetual Peace theory?

To serve our own national interest?

To justify intervention in the name of high ideals such as promoting and restoring democracy, peace-keeping, serving humanitarian purposes and protecting non-combatant minorities from persecution.


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Conclusion

Freedom Rating

http://www.freedomhouse.org/research/freeworld/2004/countryratings/iraq.htm

Political Rights: 7

Civil Liberties: 5*

Status:   Not Free

Ratings Change: Iraq’s civil liberties rating improved from 7 to 5 due to the expansion of freedoms of expression and association.

Ten Year Ratings Timeline (Political Rights, Civil Liberties, Status):

Also:

Polity IV: Democratic Rating

www.cidcm.umd.edu/inscr/polity/irq1.htm


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Conclusion

  • Democracy is possible but it will prove to be a most difficult task (Dubbins)

    • Iraq has little history of Democracy

    • Democracy will come slowly (204)

    • Lack of democratic tradition

    • Absence of agreement on power sharing among the country’s main ethnic, sectarian, and tribal groups.

    • The hollowing out of Iraq’s middle class.

    • A young pop w/ little experience of the outside world.

    • Existing power elites will resist transfer of power from their hands.

    • Suspicion of the motives of the US/UK may hamper progress.


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