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A Theoretical Outlook: Promoting Peace Through Democracy
|Concept of democracy||5|
|Main principles of democratic peace theory||11|
|Main explanations of democratic peace thesis||15|
Undoubtfully democracy can be considered as one of the most popular political terms nowadays, although the importance of term “democracy” has not ensured its exclusion from the group of “generally contested concepts, because there are many types and definitions of democracy, for instance, “the form of sovereignty, in which all those who constitute society, possess sovereign power. (I. Kant)” , “the government of the people, by the people and for the people (A. Linoln)” etc. The large amount of types and definitions of democracy bother to investigate the role of democracy in promoting peace, because according to one definition some country realizes democratic political regime, but according the other definition the same country does not belong to the group of democracies. Therefore finally only one definition of democracy was chosen: democracy is a political regime defined by competitive electoral process, free and fair elections, broad political participation and provision of basic rights and freedoms.
Democracy peace is based on two main assumptions: firstly although constitutionally stable democracies are not less war prone than other countries they don’t fight against each other and secondly although constitutionally stable democracies don’t fight against each other, they go into the same amount of wars as other countries, but only against non – democracies. The fulfillment of these assumptions is clearly visible in relations of the USA and the EU, because on the one hand although the USA and all members of the EU are democracies, the USA is more war – prone against non – democracies than the EU as the union of 27 countries; and secondly although all members of the EU are democracies, some of them are more war – prone against non – democracies than the other ones. The first thesis is explained by dissimilar worldviews characterized to the USA and the EU, because the USA is a part of T. Hobbs’s world, but the EU is a part of I. Kant’s world (R. Cagan). The second thesis is explained by diverse types of democracies and different historical legacies of involved countries.
Different political scholars have provided diverse explanations for peace among democracies and for possible wars among democracies and non – democracies. Democratic peace theory as such is based on the concept of I. Kant, who explained democratic peace in terms of Three Definitive Articles: republican civil constitution, “pacific zone” or “league of peace” and cosmopolitan law developed from transnational ties among societies. M. W. Doyle based his explanation of democratic peace on the I. Kant’s work “Perpetual Peace” (1795) to which he added some extra reasons; firstly he connected liberal democracy as a political regime to the economic interdependence among democracies, although his assumption is not supported by empirical data. Secondly he emphasized the importance of hegemon in the process of sustaining democratic peace and thirdly M. W. Doyle emphasized the difference between relations of democracies and weak non – democracies on the one hand and democracies and powerful non – democracies on the other hand, because escalation of conflict between democracies and weak non – democracies is more likely than between democracies and powerful non – democracies.
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