Fool's Errands: America's Recent Encounters with Nation Building

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Cato Institute, 2001 - Political Science - 224 pages
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In the decade following the end of the Cold War the United States undertook several nation-building missions around the globe, most of which have failed. We said we'd bring order to Somalia, but we left chaos. We went to Haiti to restore democracy, but left tyranny. We intervened in Kosovo to create a multiethnic democracy, but we may become embroiled in renewed strife and bloodshed. This extremely timely book cuts through the excuses and uncovers the causes of Washington's pattern of failure.

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Page 4 - Our overriding purpose must be to expand and strengthen the world's community of marketbased democracies. During the Cold War, we fought to contain a threat to the survival of free institutions. Now we seek to enlarge the circle of nations that live under those free institutions.
Page 3 - would not empower an assistant secretary of the Navy to draft a constitution for helpless neighbors in the West Indies and jam it down their throats at the point of bayonets borne by US Marines.
Page 10 - We are clearly witnessing what is probably an irresistible shift in public attitudes toward the belief that the defense of the oppressed in the name of morality should prevail over frontiers and legal documents.
Page 10 - Defining Away Sovereignty In June 1999, shortly after NATO ended its bombing campaign against Yugoslavia, CNN reporter Wolf Blitzer asked President Clinton if the Kosovo war amounted to a new US foreign policy doctrine. Clinton responded affirmatively. "Whether within or beyond the borders of a country, if the world community has the power to stop it, we ought to stop genocide and ethnic cleansing,
Page 5 - He understood that our own security is shaped by the character of foreign regimes. Indeed, most presidents who followed, Republicans and Democrats alike, understood we must promote democracy and market economics in the world— because it protects our interests and security and because it reflects values that are both American and universal.
Page 12 - for instance, declared during the Kosovo war, "We are fighting not for territory but for values, for a new internationalism where the brutal repression of whole ethnic groups will no longer be tolerated.

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