Country Issue Study Term Paper

Pages: 7 (1924 words)  ·  Style: APA  ·  Bibliography Sources: 8  ·  File: .docx  ·  Topic: Government

¶ … fragile state of democracy in Iraq. The writer explores the current state of affairs with regard to transitioning Iraq into a democratic nation. The writer also examines the Islamic impact on the ability for Iraq to transition successful into a democracy. There were eight sources used to complete this paper.

Transitioning to Democracy: Iraq's Fragile State

Following the events of 9-11 America went to war. It was determined to wipe out terrorism in much the same way pest controllers want to wipe out the cockroach. It is a good thought, an pleasant idea but not one that will most likely happen. Along the way, however, many other goals get accomplished and one of the goals the American war in Iraq targeted was the toppling of the Saddam Hussein regime and the rebuilding of a democracy in its place. While President George Bush believes it is a needed effort there are many Iraqi citizens who do not and they have fought against it since its beginning. America and its allies moved into the nation, swept Hussein away and began the long process of teaching the orphaned nation what democracy is about and how to achieve it for themselves.

"Few instances of American intervention abroad surpass the invasion of Iraq and the ensuing attempt to establish a democratic state in the very heart of the Middle East for misplaced optimism and failure to anticipate unintended consequences

With the presence of 150,000 U.S. military troops in Iraq the nation has begun to rebuild however at this point it its history the democracy that is supposed to replace the regime of Saddam Hussein remains extremely fragile.

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There are several reasons for the fragile state of democracy in the nation of Iraq including a lack of confidence by the Iraqi people, economic issues, uncertainty about where and how to begin the rebuilding process with the nation still at war

Term Paper on Country Issue Study Assignment

"More worrisome yet, the country's new democratic constitution may well prove to be a recipe for disaster. The prominent role afforded to Islam in shaping Iraqi laws represents a direct threat to a wide range of freedoms for women and minorities, and the sweeping autonomous powers granted to the Kurds and the Shiites may serve to usher in a civil war and the eventual breakup of the country. Not surprisingly, the Bush administration, once bullish on the prospects of remaking Iraq into a beacon of democracy in the Middle East, is today actively attempting to lower expectations by contending that it is unreasonable to expect a Jeffersonian democracy to emerge from the ruins of Saddam Hussein's brutal dictatorship."

In addition, it has long been known that the development of a democracy under forced conditions does not always produce the strongest or best results even if done with the best intentions. In the case of the war in Iraq many people are questioning the intentions of America therefore the nation lack's the unity and support it needs to be able to build a solid strong democracy for itself.

The Camps

As with any hotly debated topic there are two camps with regard to the building of a democracy in Iraq. Advocates of the attempt to build the nation into a democracy point to the strength that the U.S. leadership can provide in that endeavor, as well as the fact that a strong democratic foundation in Iraq can serve as a stepping stone for other Middle Eastern nations to become democracies if they so desire.

Establishing a democracy in Iraq will provide easier access to determine if there are nuclear warheads of other weapons of mass destruction being assembled.

The camp that opposes the decision to force Iraq to become a democracy have several arguments in their favor as well, and those arguments are the obstacles to the ability to strengthen the current Iraqi democracy.

The first argument is as long as America is in Iraq with hundreds of thousands of military troops, the democracy is seen as a smoke screen for American occupation

The next issue with the fragile state of democracy in Iraq is that it was forced upon the nation and its people which did not bode well for garnering support and that creates a very fragile state.

In much the same way that Hussein told the people what to think and how to act, they are finding themselves in the same situation even if this time they are being told that democracy is a good choice and one that supports personal freedom. Being forced into a democracy does not demonstrate freedom and the people under the order are not supportive of the ironic choice of government that they are currently trying to build.

One of the things that build strength is trust and the method by which Iraq has been brought to the table of democracy is not a trust building method. Therefore the transition which should be handled with support and eagerness, is instead being force fed to millions of people who may be glad to be out from under Hussein but do not view the forced version of government thrust upon them any more favorably

. This leads to a fragile state of democracy with an even more fragile chance at a completed transition process.

The goal to promote a population driven form of democracy should be to make America as invisible as possible as the nation builds its new form of government. While the U.S. cannot pull out completely at this point because it would leave Iraq open to invasion and occupation by Syria or Iran, which would lead to a hostile attitude toward the U.S., America does need to become more invisible to the process and only step in with advice when invited to do so.

This would be a positive step in building the trust with the Iraqi people and helping them to see the benefits that a democratic government can provide for them.

Another issue with the fragile state of democracy in Iraq is the fact that the people are struggling with widespread poverty and destruction and being asked to believe that if they follow the U.S. directives their lives will be full and rich with success

. America is responsible, for the most part for the destruction that Iraq has endured. The buildings, the economy and the infrastructure have all been virtually destroyed by the American hunt for Saddam and his supporters. Now the very nation that caused such problems in the every day life of Iraqi citizens is trying to help them build a democracy.

What should be done

Because of the forced situation by which the Iraqi people have been stripped of their previous life and former lifestyle the U.S. has a moral and ethical responsibility to rebuild the country. While a democracy is the government that will be installed America needs to back up and allow the Iraqi people to develop that system

It took America more than 200 years to get to the point it currently is in. It is important to understand that the process in Iraq is going to take time and the most important thing that the U.S. can do to help is to send financial aid to the nation as the rebuilding takes place and the democratic government strengthens with time.

Throughout history, democracies have started out as fragile forms of government and then built to become stronger and better than many of its counterpart forms of government.

"Dunn argues that it took the French Revolution to turn "democrat" into a partisan label and a badge of political honor. Democracy as a word and as an idea acquired political momentum only after 1789, when politicians began to speak of democratizing the societies to which they belonged. Dunn stresses that it was, above all, Maximilien Robespierre, the Svengali of the Jacobin Terror, who brought democracy back to life as a focus of political allegiance, as an organizing conception of an entire vision of politics. For Robespierre, "Not only is virtue the soul of democracy, it can only exist inside this form of government" (p. 117)

"From the writings of Jeremy Bentham, through Thomas Hobbes, all the way back to Aristotle, Dunn traces the debate over the institutional vs. cultural explanations for democratic outcomes

. In contrast to the Bush administration, Dunn makes a careful distinction between democracy as an electoral instrument and the democratization process itself. He reminds the reader that "Democracy as a form of government and democratization as a social, cultural, economic and political process has very different rhythms. They are also subject to quite different sorts of causal pressures" (p. 179)

One of the strengths that have allowed the democracy to thrive in America is the fact that the nation has enjoyed continued economic success and power on a global level. It is easy to be fair and equal minded when there are no serious economic problems. It is important if the world wants to strength the fragile state of Iraq's infant democracy, that the… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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How to Cite "Country Issue Study" Term Paper in a Bibliography:

APA Style

Country Issue Study.  (2007, May 11).  Retrieved September 24, 2020, from

MLA Format

"Country Issue Study."  11 May 2007.  Web.  24 September 2020. <>.

Chicago Style

"Country Issue Study."  May 11, 2007.  Accessed September 24, 2020.