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Why America Wants to Promote Liberty and Democracy

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Previous FORAtv comments:
Sqirril Avatar
Posted: 07.04.10, 12:53 AM
Of course, we really should be spreading 'republics'. Democracy fails.
Luis Khalil Avatar
Luis Khalil
Posted: 06.30.10, 08:07 AM
It is frequently forgotten that, from ancient times, political thought has as one of the few principles that can be held as efficient, that in strategy matters, sometimes you have to back a tyrant when the other alternatives are worse tyrants. That is, you have to negotiate. This was recognized even by St. Thomas Aquinas in the middle ages; it has been termed generally as the theory of the lesser evil. The trouble is: ¿What you do with the "friendly" tyrant after the critical situation has been done with? In backing dictators and tyrants, USA has not been worse than others in history (Spain, Rome, Greece, Indian & Chinese Kings & emperors, France, Britain, etc.), and in fact, all in all, even better than most. But in how to deal with the aftermath, USA has had problems. This aftermath is what need to be dealt and worked upon. USA has won many wars, but it has lost too many peaces after the wars. The thing is to win the peace.
JordiBS Avatar
Posted: 04.29.10, 12:06 PM
Hi, I am European, and I am very surprised to hear still there is someone with studies supporting and believing this story of US democracy. Firstly we have to remember that this fathers founders exterminated the Indian native population (thanks to them it came from 12million to 200,000 in 70 years, thank you very much). Plus, the system of corporations supporting candidates, I don't think it is much democratic. Afterwards, the politians have to pay back the investment. Wall Street impunity and bail out, one war every 10 or 5 years to mantain the war industry happy... There are several examples but US has imposed several dictatorships in the world. Nicaragua, Panama, Chile, Guatemala, Iran... bla bla. Lot of them were democracies, however comunist. It looks they can be democratic but if it doesn't like US, then they shouldn't. Another good one was Vietnam, before US invasion there was a dictator supported by US, it was one of the heartless... vietnamese people were fighting for democracy and freedom, firstly against the dictator and afterwards against the dictator and the US army. They killed 4million civilians. They were used more bombs than in the whole WW2. And more civilian killed in proportion. US is still having the death penalty, which is against any modern understanding of a society. Furthermore, it is one of the only countries not signing the reduction of polution of the world. Iran originally was a democracy, as a country they asked to get the oil back to their population. US and UK provoked a coup to get the oil control. There are so many examples of anti democratic actions of US, that I don't think there is that much to be proud of being an American. At least being democratic. I just saw 5 min of the film, I am going to watch the rest, ))) Hope one day, we all can be more respectful with others. J.
Mark Sullivan Avatar
Mark Sullivan
Posted: 01.14.10, 08:12 PM
AntoineNonnin, Arab societies are tribal. The concept of tribalism is not used perjoratively here as your mind conjured up, it is a statement of anthropological FACT. What do we call Indian Tribes if the concept of of tribal society is racist? Tribalism is simply another way groups of people have organized themselves, either consciously or unconsciously. The lecturer went on to explain what he meant by tribalism - concern for far more narrow interests such as the family, the extended family and the religion of the people in close proximity to one another. Also, you are mistaken. Mossadeq was not deocratically elected at all. He was installed by the parliament and given approval by the Shah. This myth of the American overthrow of the "democratically elected government of Iran" is held by almost everyone as a "gotcha" against America, but it is incorrect. I have always viewed this "big lie" about America as a deliberate attempt to indict America for things it has not done. This was an excellent, interesting speech.
carlos-8a Avatar
Posted: 12.06.09, 05:04 AM
What he says about the treatment of native people, is the most ridiculous thing ever said, that is the kind of liberty and democracy the United States promotes. And It has been done all around the world for decades.
AntoineBonnin Avatar
Posted: 11.12.09, 07:34 PM
Democracy does not exist yet, the lucky ones live in either an oligarchic or plutarchy society. "Extending democracy to the world is difficult because their societies are much too tribal", this professor should really not talk about current events. This is such a racist comment. Does he realize that Afghanistan was becoming a democratic states in the 70's, and that Iran had a democratically elected governement in the 50's (removed by the British with help of the CIA). Actually, Mossadegh the Prime minister of the time even became the Time man of the year in 1953! Western societies should really learn about their past deeds, as they might be surprise by some of them. Like Isaiah Berlin said “Only barbarians are not curious about where they come from, how they came to be where they are, where they appear to be going, whether they wish to go there, and if so, why, and if not, why not.”
improbable0possible Avatar
Posted: 10.29.09, 04:35 PM
Quote: Originally Posted by MTGRAY no matter the academic scholars & their point of views Democracy by the standards of modern day does not exist. this being clear by the last 2 decades of invasion. it is more the new Americans idea of democracy is military strength and forcing other nations to go their way. that is fascist" NOT DEMOCRACY". You raise a good point. You also forget to mention the coups they have funded, the dictators they have put in place, the shah of Iran being an example. America has used it's economic weight as much as it's military, during the Iraq and Iran conflict whilst publicly funding Saddam the Iranians were getting American capital too. Politics is much like a game, although it saddens me, America are very good at playing the game. Peace.
Posted: 10.20.09, 12:03 AM
People need to watch this regardless of their political perspective. I actually gained some valuable insight after listening in. Thanks Gordon Wood.
TheDude Avatar
Posted: 09.21.09, 02:08 AM
Brilliant! To encapsulate even the smallest events in history is difficult. Dr. Gordon Wood makes it seem effortless and even expands to the dilemmas and of course irony the USA faces today. I think the prior poster would have done well to listen to this later part.
Posted: 09.16.09, 02:34 PM
no matter the academic scholars & their point of views Democracy by the standards of modern day does not exist. this being clear by the last 2 decades of invasion. it is more the new Americans idea of democracy is military strength and forcing other nations to go their way. that is fascist" NOT DEMOCRACY".

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