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We Can't Force Democracy - Creating Normality Is the Real Mideast Challenge

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At www.washingtonpost.com

President Bush has posited that the American experience with democracy is urgently useful to the wider world. True, but there is another side of the coin: that America basically inherited its institutions from the Anglo-Saxon tradition and thus its experience over 230 years has been about limiting despotic power rather than creating power from scratch. Because order is something we've taken for granted, anarchy is not something we've feared. But in many parts of the world, the experience has been the opposite, and so is the challenge: how to create legitimate, functioning institutions in utterly barren landscapes.

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At www.washingtonpost.com


 

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