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Afghanistan & Iraq, Democracy & The United States: Between Rocks And Hard Places

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Chapter Summary

Democratizing Afghanistan and Iraq illustrates a cross-section of what may be at stake. In the two cases being studied, the United States was behind the steering wheel of both the conflicts and the democracy blueprints. This chapter provides a comparative study of democratization in Afghanistan and Iraq, asking three clear questions: What is the nature of the subject of investigation? How will the investigation be formatted? Why is the subject significant? Any case or comparative study of Muslim countries would at some point have to also reassess the state, including all its attributes, including the rationality assumption. Finally, this comparative study is significant for international relations (IR) because in comparing and contrasting cases of vital importance to the theoretical and empirical development of IR, it explicitly makes comparative study an instrument of IR.

Keywords: Afghanistan; democracy; international relations (IR); Iraq; Muslim countries; United States



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