The Iraq War and Democratic Politics contains the work of leading scholars concerned with the political implications of the Iraq War and its relationship to and significance for democracy. The book shuns simplistic analysis and provides a nuanced and critical overview of this key moment in global politics. Subjects covered include: * the underlying moral and political issues raised by the war * US foreign policy and the Middle East * the fundamental dilemmas and contradictions of democratic intervention * how the war was perceived in the UK, EU and US * the challenges of creating democracy inside Iraq * the influential role of NGOs * the legitimacy of the war within international law * the relationship between democratic government and intelligence.
More than most post-1970 conflicts involving US forces, the conflict in Iraq has been fought out against a background of frequently invoked memories from the era of the Vietnam War. The essays in this book offer a series of perspectives on connections and parallels between the Vietnam War and the 2003 invasion of, and conflict in, Iraq. The contributors particularly examine the impact of the Vietnam analogy on the War in Iraq, assessing the military tactical lessons learned from the Vietnam War and exploring the influence and persistence of its legacy in US politics, culture and diplomacy. The volume holds up to original interrogation some commonly held assumptions about historical analogy, and several distinguished authorities on the Vietnam War era, in particular, offer their thoughts on the value and applicability of Vietnam-Iraq parallels. If most contributions point out some obvious dissimilarities between the two eras, notably the transformed post-Cold War international environment, the similarities, particularly those relating to the problems of cultural misunderstanding, are also apparent. Vietnam in Iraq will be of great interest for all students and researchers of the Iraq War, strategic studies, international relations and American politics.
The almost universally accepted explanation for the Iraq War is very clear and consistent - the US decision to attack Saddam Hussein's regime on March 19, 2003 was a product of the ideological agenda, misguided priorities, intentional deceptions and grand strategies of President George W. Bush and prominent 'neoconservatives' and 'unilateralists' on his national security team. Despite the widespread appeal of this version of history, Frank P. Harvey argues that it remains an unsubstantiated assertion and an underdeveloped argument without a logical foundation. His book aims to provide a historically grounded account of the events and strategies which pushed the US-UK coalition towards war. The analysis is based on both factual and counterfactual evidence, combines causal mechanisms derived from multiple levels of analysis and ultimately confirms the role of path dependence and momentum as a much stronger explanation for the sequence of decisions that led to war.
How were the American people prepared for the war on Iraq? How have political agents and media gatekeepers sought to develop public support for the first preventive war of the modern age? Bring 'Em On highlights the complex links between media and politics, analyzing how communication practices are modified in times of crisis to protect political interests or implement political goals. International contributors in mass communication, political science, and sociology address how U.S. institutional media practices, government policy, and culture can influence public mobilization for war.
For all too obvious reasons, war, empire, and military conflict have become extremely hot topics in the academy. Given the changing nature of war, one of the more promising areas of scholarly investigation has been the development of new theories of war and war’s impact on society. War, Citizenship, Territory features 19 chapters that look at the impact of war and militarism on citizenship, whether traditional territorially-bound national citizenship or "transnational" citizenship. Cowen and Gilbert argue that while there has been an explosion of work on citizenship and territory, Western academia’s avoidance of the immediate effects of war (among other things) has led them to ignore war, which they contend is both pervasive and well nigh permanent. This volume sets forth a new, geopolitically based theory of war’s transformative role on contemporary forms of citizenship and territoriality, and includes empirical chapters that offer global coverage.
Identifies historical factors as well as sociological and political forces that led to the war in the middle east, analyzing the conflict's impact while providing coverage of the occupation, the development of resistance, and international responses. By the author of Revolutions and Revolutionary Movements. Original.
Democratic Ideals, Political Uncertainty and Strategic Positioning
Author: Jeffrey M. Stonecash
Category: Political Science
How do parties respond to the electorate and craft winning strategies? In the abstract parties are the vehicles to make democracy work, but it is often difficult to see the process working as well as we think it might. Indeed, voters often struggle to see parties as the valuable vehicles of representation that so many academics describe. There is a clear discrepancy between the ideal expressed in many textbooks and the reality that we see playing out in politics. Noted scholar Jeffrey Stonecash gives us a big picture analysis that helps us understand what is happening in contemporary party politics. He explains that parties behave the way they do because of existing political conditions and how parties adapt to those conditions as they prepare for the next election. Parties are unsure if realignment has stabilized and just what issues brought them their current base. Does a majority support their positions and how are they to react to ongoing social change? Is the electorate paying attention, and can parties get a clear message to those voters? This book focuses on the challenges parties face in preparing for future elections while seeking to cope with current conditions. This coping leads to indecisiveness of positioning, simplification of issues, repetition of messages, and efforts to disparage the reputation of the opposing party. Stonecash sheds much needed light on why parties engage in the practices that frustrate so many Americans.
Why do some democracies reflect their citizens' foreign policy preferences better than others? What roles do the media, political parties, and the electoral system play in a democracy's decision to join or avoid a war? War and Democratic Constraint shows that the key to how a government determines foreign policy rests on the transmission and availability of information. Citizens successfully hold their democratic governments accountable and a distinctive foreign policy emerges when two vital institutions—a diverse and independent political opposition and a robust media—are present to make timely information accessible. Matthew Baum and Philip Potter demonstrate that there must first be a politically potent opposition that can blow the whistle when a leader missteps. This counteracts leaders' incentives to obscure and misrepresent. Second, healthy media institutions must be in place and widely accessible in order to relay information from whistle-blowers to the public. Baum and Potter explore this communication mechanism during three different phases of international conflicts: when states initiate wars, when they respond to challenges from other states, or when they join preexisting groups of actors engaged in conflicts. Examining recent wars, including those in Afghanistan and Iraq, War and Democratic Constraint links domestic politics and mass media to international relations in a brand-new way.