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The United States and democracy promotion in Iraq and Lebanon in the aftermath of the events of 9/11 and the 2003 Iraq War

Citation: Taqi, Abess (2015) The United States and democracy promotion in Iraq and Lebanon in the aftermath of the events of 9/11 and the 2003 Iraq War. Doctoral thesis, University of London.

TAQI, A - Thesis -final draft for submission-.pdf

Creative Commons: Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0

This thesis features two case studies exploring the George W. Bush Administration’s (2001 – 2009) efforts to promote democracy in the Arab world, following military occupation in Iraq, and through ‘democracy support’ or ‘democracy assistance’ in Lebanon. While reviewing well rehearsed arguments that emphasise the inappropriateness of the methods employed to promote Western liberal democracy in Middle East countries and the difficulties in the way of democracy being fostered by foreign powers, it focuses on two factors that also contributed to derailing the U.S.’s plans to introduce ‘Western style’ liberal democracy to Iraq and Lebanon. The first is the adverse impact upon the U.S.’s efforts to foster democracy in Iraq caused by bureaucratic in-fighting and conflicting U.S. agency agendas. The argument is that the internecine struggles between competing U.S. agencies, not only in the build-up to the invasion of Iraq, but also during the post-war occupation of that country, helped to undermine the Bush Administration’s policy there. In Lebanon the study shows that, notwithstanding the non-military approach the Bush Administration pursued there, its efforts again still fell short of the grand rhetoric which accompanied the shift in U.S. foreign policy toward democracy promotion in the aftermath of 9/11 and the 2003 Iraq war. The second factor put forward in this study as also significant in the failure of the Bush enterprise is the widespread suspicion of U.S. motives across Iraq, Lebanon and the wider Arab world. The thesis argues that such suspicions are reflective of the broader issues of credibility and trust which have bedevilled U.S. democracy promotion. The analysis to follow will show how Bush’s democracy campaign was compromised by a prevalent anti-American sentiment borne out of the deep and pervasive suspicions of U.S. motives.

Creators: Taqi, Abess and
Subjects: Politics
Divisions: Institute of Commonwealth Studies
Collections: Theses and Dissertations
  • 1 April 2015 (submitted)


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