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Lecture

Lecture- Jan 11-2011


Department
Political Science
Course Code
POL208Y1
Professor
John Haines

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11 January 2011
THE DEMOCRATIC PEACE THEORY
Liberal Point of view.
States have to answer in the same manner regarding the condition of anarchy. It
doesnt matter to Kenneth Wartz whether the states are democratic or not. What
matters is the international system.
Others argue it is the nature of the regime of the state.
For the realist and neorealist, the international system is more important than the
regime.
Liberalists say that democracies dont fight each other. Any scenario of an armed
conflict between USA and Canada is ridiculous. The building of the EU is about
enlarging the democratic peace theory.
The Copenhagen criteria of the EU is the requirement of democracy.
Philosophical roots of democratic peace proposition (Emmanuel Cart) 1795. Wrote
the Perpetual Peace. A time when there were very few liberal regime. Perpetual
peace is assured when: 1-The constitution must be of a Republic where freedoms are
guaranteed. 2- Liberal Nations will bring up peace among themselves (pacific union)
3- Establish a cosmopolitan law among these nations guaranteeing foreigners the
same rights as citizens. A tourist and citizen have same rights.
It is a slow process where setbacks and conflicts will happen. The slow
establishment of the PU will be more of an ideal. Trust must be built in order to
create this. PU is not only a treaty but a process. The PU is not a world Govt. The
idea was a collective security agreement. Non-aggression pact.
The second origin of Democratic Peace was by Karl Dutch in the 1950s. He studied
the relation among people of different nations. Compared the number of postal
letters exchanged between people of different nations. The more intense the relation,
the less likely these 2 countries will go to war with each other (Theory). Individual
association= National peace. One requirement was reduction of defence tools at
national borders. Slow progression will lead to unlikely possibility of war. Can be
applied today to emails. Some regimes are trying to stop free communication.
Cultural Normatic Model- at its core, in a democracy, disputes are resolved without
force. Through democratic process. The threat of violence is considered illegitimate.
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Dissent is needed, but within rules. Citizens are expected to share this peaceful
resolution. Cultural norms and practice will automatically apply into the relation
with other democracies. In the current dispute about arctic boundaries, any dispute
of Ottawa and Washington is low. It is higher between Ottawa and Moscow. This is
because the Russian System of democracy is far less optimal. Because of the norms
and culture of democracies, they will apply among nations. The conflict of interests
will lead to application of this model. The other side of this model is that this does
not apply to Dictatorship regime. This is because non-liberals suffer from
assumption of tyranny. The democratic peace theory exists because democracies use
peace conflict resolution. The situation today regarding Korea. It is very difficult to
enter the negotiating process because of possibility of North Korea to use force. Less
threat from South Korea. The negotiation is not of a peaceful nature because North
is not a democracy. Stress the values and norms.
Structure and Institution Model- In a democracy, the decision to go to war is far
more difficult to take than in a dictatorship. In democracy, the citizens must be
convinced to go to war. Leaders need to ensure there is popular support of their
aims. There are different levels of constraint in different types of democracy.
Presidential vs. Parliamentary. 2003 Iraq War- UKs Tony Blair decided it was
unthinkable for the UK to be against the USA. Frances Jacque Chiraq refused to
follow America in their war. UK the parliament must endorse the decision, at least
half the parliament must subscribe to this view. There was a tense battle about the
decision in the House of Commons. Vote took place. France parliament has no say in
defence and foreign policy. Once the policy is decided by the president, game over.
Chiraq only had to go on TV for 7 minutes. Constraints: 7 minutes vs. 8 hours of
parliamentary debate. Need to convince political majority.
Another example, Gulf War of 1991. GB had to go and convince congress about the
war. Won by only 2 votes. Obama west point, 30,000 more troops. President makes
the decision but the congress endorses it.
Other factors. Voluntary defence system of professional soldier vs. a conscription
system. In a conscription system it is a lot more difficult as there are many unwilling
participants. Vietnam-any US citizen can be called to serve the army. Iraq, the
society at large was left relatively untouched.
In democracy, the constraint of checks and balances, division of power, public debate
and slow decision making reduce the likelihood of a surprise attack. Leaders will
expect other leaders to be suffering the same constraints. Conversely, a dictatorship
is expected to be able to mobilise immediately and a surprise attack is expected.
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