Accession Number:

ADA426962

Title:

The Democratic Core: How Large, How Effective?

Descriptive Note:

Book chapter

Corporate Author:

NATIONAL DEFENSE UNIV WASHINGTON DC INST FOR NATIONAL STRATEGIC STUDIES

Personal Author(s):

Report Date:

1999-01-01

Pagination or Media Count:

17.0

Abstract:

Democratization remains a key goal and a viable enterprise. However, promoting it will not be easy and will require careful handling. Those countries with a democratic government are the worlds democratic core. Enlarging it has been a goal of U.S. foreign policy in recent years. This is not new, for presidents as far back as George Washington have encouraged the spread of democracy. What is new is that it has seemingly become a feasible goal after communisms decline and the Cold Wars end. Today, U.S. policy makers believe that enlarging the democratic community can expand international cooperation while reducing instability abroad. The 20th century witnessed a monumental struggle between democracy and various forms of totalitarianism. Democracy emerged triumphant, exposing totalitarianism as a hollow ideology. Totalitarianism denied human rights, failed to produce economic prosperity, and fostered war. Conversely, democracy championed human rights, produced growing economic prosperity, and fostered peace. In the Cold Wars aftermath, optimism flourished regarding democracys global prospects. Emerging trends reinforced this optimism. Former Warsaw Pact countries pledged to adopt Western values, including democracy and market economies. The 1980s witnessed democracys spread in Asia, Latin America, and, to a degree, Sub-Saharan Africa. Only Cuba, the Middle East, and Communist China seemed to be holdouts, although some observers saw China as adopting market economics and becoming more pluralist. More recently this optimism has dimmed. Democracy remains intact in many places, but many democratic countries are not necessarily secure, and the international system is not stable. This chapter takes stock of democracys future, examining where democracy is firmly entrenched, where it is struggling to develop, and where it is not progressing. It also considers a key issue will the core Western democracies cooperate on common security interests 2 figures, 6 photos7

Subject Categories:

  • Economics and Cost Analysis
  • Government and Political Science

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE