69 million page views

Ready for Democracy

Reader comment on item: After Saddam? Remaking the Mideast

Submitted by Ted Volckhausen (United States), Feb 12, 2003 at 15:05

In 1967, at Fort Benning, Georgia, an instructor in an officer candidate class talked about countries with no democratic tradition and said that it would in all likelihood be futile to try to make them democracies.

His primary example of such a country was Portugal.

Iraq is not Portugal, but his remarks are enough to show that we don't know what the preconditions for democracy are. The difficult question is: how much worse off are we if we try and fail? My guess is, probably not much.

Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

Follow Daniel Pipes

Facebook   Twitter   RSS   Join Mailing List

All materials by Daniel Pipes on this site: © 1968-2023 Daniel Pipes. daniel.pipes@gmail.com and @DanielPipes

Support Daniel Pipes' work with a tax-deductible donation to the Middle East Forum.Daniel J. Pipes

(The MEF is a publicly supported, nonprofit organization under section 501(c)3 of the Internal Revenue Code.

Contributions are tax deductible to the full extent allowed by law. Tax-ID 23-774-9796, approved Apr. 27, 1998.

For more information, view our IRS letter of determination.)