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What are, according to you, the conditions that allow the establishment of a democratic regime? Can democracy be exported? Abstract
Almost all countries in the world consider themselves democratic, applying one of the models of democracy as their government system. In early 20th century, less than half of the world countries were democratic (due to colonialism and imperialism, not many countries were independent). Many countries that are currently de jure democratic, de facto, they’re not. Various questions were raised by politicians, theorists and thinkers, regarding the democratization of non-democratic countries. Some associated emerge of democracy with culture and history; others considered regime and political tension to be most important factors in the process of democratization. Recent attempts by US and NATO regarding the regime change and democracy establishment in Iraq and Afghanistan do not seem to be successful yet. On the contrary, examples of successful establishment of democracy in countries like Japan, Korea, and Germany (after the WWII) put forth counter facts for the enforcement of democracy by outside powers. Observing democracy in various cultures throughout history we come to conclusion that there are certain values and principles which grow out of particular political, social and economic circumstances. Without conditions for those principles to emerge, enforcement of democracy cannot succeed. “Let every nation know, whether it wishes us well or ill, that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe to assure the survival and success of liberty.” Those are the lines from Kennedy’s inaugural speech, on Friday, January the 15th, 1961. 49 years have passed since then. World does not fear of Communism anymore. Political and economic agendas of states have changed and challenges of democracy are different now, than it was in mid. 20th century. World is an interesting place where concepts of self determination and international responsibility continuously clashes with concepts as sovereignty and territorial integrity. Despite the fact that many autocracies of the past century are replaced with democracies, a lot of countries do not still answer democratic standards, some even not accepting democracy to be the right system. Though one thing is certain; today, majority of world states do accept the fact that democracy is the most suitable system of governance, just by
freedom. in USA. as we see in many countries around the world. but they should all respect universally accepted principles and norms of democracy. simply by being a member of United Nations. As a political model and as an ideal. freedom of press and media. and in many countries afterwards. was due to the reason that German people practiced democracy before the Nazi regime. security and public accountability and many other elements of democracy should occur in all states that consider themselves democratic. Transparency. Its fundamental elements are universally recognized by the world community. ethnicity. the new . Without the conditions for the development of the concepts named. have been intensively propagating and spreading the ideals of democracy and human rights after the WWII. For instance. The question. freedom of speech. freedom of market. mostly centered in Europe and America.declaring their government to be democratic. Empirical history of governance shows that without certain democratic values exiting. except under the situation of emergency. application of any democratic model will not function properly. Germany. it was re-established. Installation of any democratic model should be realized out of need and necessity. democracy has been though many experiences and challenges. as it was in ancient Greece. social. freedom to represent and being represented. The countries that are not democratic might not be so due to various reasons. no matter if democracy being executed successfully. political and economic type). and responsibility. democracy cannot be implemented from above. Rights of an individual should be exercised under the conditions of equality. freedom. whether democracy can be exported. it was Germans themselves who converted their political system into democracy again. have already agreed upon the basic principles of human rights. political participation. Though the intervention was essential in order to end totalitarianism. irrespective to their culture. or not. International organizations. If society does not practice the concepts as equality. and responsibility. Even the countries that do not practice democracy as the political system. it is not possible to implement democracy. Democracy was not established in Germany. freedom of movement and organization. All the other principles that further on shape and develop democracy most likely emerge out of those three. getting democratized relatively easily after the 12 years of totalitarianism. economic and political background. Different societies might apply different modeling of democracy depending on many factors (of social. or imposed by outside powers has been the subject for debates for a long time. This fact gives a common ground for the West to justify spread of democracy and its values. and became quite complicated. Besides.
it was the creation of conditions (either by the regime itself. US were involved only in military section and was supervising Korean military sector. and social) among the citizens that led to the prosperity of the democratic values. In Korea. It has gone through dictatorships during 70’s and 80’s and still executing the National Security Law. In spite of the efforts. because of the tribal society and warlords that undermine sovereignty of the Afghani government. or the government that prevents democratic conditions to appear (Di Palma. where the regime was changed to democracy. or by outside powers) for equality. economic. freeing former opposition. Republic of Korea is often named as well. NATO and EU to promote and encourage democracy and it will take a long time and big effort for the Afghani people to reach certain goals towards democratization. to be one of the countries that democracy was brought from abroad. Many scholars deny this fact and claim that it is rather the ideology of a society. . Rule of law does not function and under these circumstances. it is obvious that it was the people themselves executing democracy. and not by Allied forces. democracy cannot function. 1990). Sometimes the problem is not the regime. avoiding military intervention to public affairs). gender equality). the main reason of successful transition to democracy was conditions that American authorities in Japan created. It is a hard task for US. Of course. Japan has still been facing several human rights problems (ex.constitution was written by Germans. ensuring freedom of speech and organization of free press. rather than outside powers imposing it. It took a long time for the Japanese society to overcome the obstacles as nationalism. freedom and responsibility that gave start to the establishment of democracy. Despite the fact that Japanese constitution was written by Americans. which has continuously been causing problems to free media and free speech. and abolishing Japanese military forces (therefore. but Afghanistan is not. There were no particular intensive programs focused on democratization of South Korea at that time. Instability in Afghanistan is not because of Islam. These resulted with equality and freedom (civil and political. China might be suitable to this claim. Traditional beliefs prevent basic aspects of freedom to be exercised that leads to inequality and irresponsibility. both in Germany and Japan foreign democratic powers helped to create the conditions for development of democratic values and principles. therefore. pushing for land reform. It is mostly. The other examples of successful installment of democracy by the outside power are the case of Japan and Korea. but rather the traditional society and cultural obstacles. In many other cases also. In all the three cases.
” If an authoritarian government pushes even harder on opposition. and makes the society hard to control. which is in favor of authoritarian governments. It has to emerge out of necessity and need. or a transitional outside power that has the objective to promote. civil wars. the professor of the Oxford University.Democracy can only be implemented from bottom to up. “bad” neighbors with low growth. However. To make it clear. most of the case with the purpose of creating an obstacle for opposition to reach people. and bad government. coup d’états.g. 2007) countries show that creating of conditions for democracy and protecting the values emerging out of those conditions is the responsibility of a government itself. Such governments face two options. They are armed conflicts (e. foreign aid. low infrastructure. and encourage democracy. In order freedom to be established in a certain country. and in South-East Asia. explains four conditions that make it hard to impose democracy upon the failed states. despite the pressure by international community. etc. Therefore controlling the information sector and peoples civic and political rights like freedom of gathering and freedom of speech helps dictatorial states to restrain society and keep their authority. Central Asia. people need to be free within that space. wars with neighbors). and strengthen propaganda to keep people quiet and distracted from politics. “the wealthier the country is. authoritarian countries that liberalize their economic sector soon become obliged to hold political reforms as well. both politically and economically. These factors show that external positive influence for the establishment of democracy in nondemocratic countries (whether they are failed states or not) requires high responsibility to eliminate all the negative factors that prevent the democratic conditions appear. No wonder. It is hard to stay in the middle for a long time. Control of market results with inequality of income among the population and this is for the benefit of an authoritarian regime as well. there are many other factors that influence non-democratic countries to survive for a long time. There are examples of successful and unsuccessful authoritarian regimes in Africa.). or further represses any opposition. that fails to control economy and society efficiently. Examples of “the bottom billion”(Collier. . they need space. the more likely it is to be democratic. either to hold market reforms to increase people’s income. unstable government. In authoritarian type states this freedom is usually controlled by the government. Paul Collier. international organizations and democratic countries. further deepens inequality. Latin-America. rich natural resources (diamond. corruption and malfunction of rule of law. it will most likely be overthrown. In order people to develop their needs. However. As Huntington pointed out. oil & gas.
Similarly. installation of any democratic model as a political system from above will not function properly and efficiently in relation to the standards of democracy itself. History of application of democracy for more than 2. and only after that worked on strengthening the implementation and efficiency of that model in their country. lack of free and fair elections. as non-partisan democracy. Even if many elements of those models not matching each other. social. depends on their choice) to the culture. and variety of other models that emerge in 20th century. Societies where individual freedom is highly admired and economic system is strongly capitalistic will probably end up with the liberal-democratic model or at least share most of its elements.it is in the hands of power holder in a certain country to ensure the conditions and promote the values of democracy there. Russian Federation. Belarus. direct democracy. and political characteristics of a society. Likewise.g. Different political theorists came up with different models of democracy and number of debates occurred upon considering certain models offered to be democratic or not. liberal democracy. totalitarian democracy and so on. then either a definite democratic model should fit economic. without the fundamental principles of democracy existing in a society. or a new model should be formed if necessary. they all ought to follow basic ideology and fundamental values of democracy. a society where religious traditions are followed by the majority. Each country’s democratic experience is unique. former USSR countries in Europe) people adopted a certain democratic model as their government system. On the other hand. to form a certain model of democracy that is suitable (or not. as well. It is the responsibility of the society – the people of that certain country – to develop values of democracy. David Held from LSE. many others that did the same have not been succeeding for the last 20 years. social democracy. Many other models of democracies have been offered by various political theorists. Therefore. and other relevant characteristics of that particular country. after the collapse of the USSR. religion.500 by various societies under different circumstances resulted with diverse modeling of democracy as a political system. in his book Models of Democracy names models as Athenian democracy. in many cases (e. is best suitable to theocratic . ethnic diversity. and Tajikistan are still suffering from lack of free press & media. Prof. Accepting fact that installation of any democratic model (by the society) should be realized out of need and necessity. Azerbaijan. republican democracy. Kazakhstan. theocratic democracy. Turkmenistan. to form a constitution. and violation of basic human rights that are identical for democracy as well. deliberative democracy. Former USSR countries (CIS) as Armenia.
New York: Cambridge University Press.html?res=9E0CE7DA143AF93BA25757C0A964958260&n=Top/Ref erence/Times%20Topics/People/R/Roh%20Tae%20Woo Palma. and the Republic of Turkey can be a good example to this. Solutions for the worlds biggest problems. . and guarantee safety of them. Therefore. adoption and execution of it can be assisted. In many other cases where democracy was promoted and propagated by West. 2007.” New York Times. Countries like USA. not always the model of the political system makes majority happy and recognizes rights of minority. Third Edition. rather than from the government. equal. In this case.com/gst/fullpage. it is the majority that is responsible to organize its government in a form of particular political model. Guiseppe. France. Cambridge: Polity Press. Works Cited Held. encouraged and supported by the international community. 2007.” Berkeley. However. 2006. it does not deny the fact that it is the task of the authority to ensure the very existence of the conditions for emerge of values and principles of democracy. not from any other authority. Lomborg. helped through. Once there is a civil society with free. “How to Complete Democracy in Korea. http://query. 1990. Democracy is not a product that can be exported in the west and imported to the rest. where sovereignty of people are recognized along with rules of religion. Problems with the recognition of rights of minorities in Islamic Republic of Iran. At the same time. sovereignty comes from the people. Collier. Bjorn. Britain. practice of democratic values will most probably succeed if the model is suitable. New York: Oxford University Press. David. In democracy. it did not go farther than the assistance for creation of the conditions for the rise of democratic principles and values. University of California Press. varying in each and specific case. Models of Democracy. Peoples Republic of China. and respectively others from the Western world do share valuable democratic experiences and have been successful exercising them. unpleasant consequences of the model’s implementation might happen. “To Craft Democracies: An Essay on Democratic Transitions. Of course. and responsible citizens. April 18.democracy.nytimes. The Bottom Billion. 1992. Paul. In all these cases democracy was agreed upon by the majority of the people and was applied from the society.
Halperin. “Self-Determination in the New World Order.” Washington. “Democracy and Human Rights In Developing Countries. Huntington. “The Third Wave: Democratization In the Late Twentieth Century. Samuel.” University of Oklahoma Press. Colo. Arat.” New York. 1992. Columbia University Press.C. Scheffer. Nathan. Small. “China's Crisis: Dilemmas of Reform and Prospects for Democracy. . Andrew. D.” Lynne Rienner Publishers. 1990. Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. 1991. 1991.
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