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Democratic Peace and Covert War: A Case Study of the U.S. Covert War in Chile

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Authors
Kim, Jaechun
Issue Date
2005-06
Publisher
Institute of International Affairs, Graduate School of International Studies, Seoul National University
Citation
Journal of International and Area Studies, Vol.12 No.1, pp. 25-47
Keywords
U.S. Foreign PolicyU.S. Intelligence PolicyInternational Relations TheoryCold War History
Abstract
A body of scholarly work organized around “Democratic Peace” demonstrates that democracies rarely if ever wage war against other democracies, although occasionally they may do so against non-democracies. The United States (U.S.), however, has engaged in covert wars against other democratically-elected governments. Do the so-called Democratic Peace findings carry over to the somewhat murkier realm of covert war? By analyzing the U.S. covert war against Chile in the early 1970s, this paper looks for implications of covert wars waged between democracies for Democratic Peace scholarship. Arguably, there are two strands of causal logic to Democratic Peace. One attributes the absence of war among democracies to democratic institutional constraints: the restraining effects of public opinions or those of the checks and balances embedded in a democratic state’s domestic political institutions (institutional/structural explanation). Other theories posit that democratic norms and culture  peaceful conflict resolution norms and culture shared by elites  account for the absence of war between democratic states (normative/cultural explanations). If the nonviolent norms of elites in democracies were sufficient, the U.S. should not have resorted to covert war as well as overt war to resolve conflict with democratic Chile. The paper demonstrates that the findings on the U.S. covert war against Chile undermine the cultural/normative explanation of Democratic Peace.
ISSN
1226-8550
Language
English
URI
http://hdl.handle.net/10371/96408
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Graduate School of International Studies (국제대학원)Dept. of International Studies (국제학과)Journal of International and Area StudiesJournal of International and Area Studies vol.12 (2005)
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