Liberalism In Iraq

Better Essays
Nick Sherman
Professor Asal
Political science 102
9/27/16
In the wake of 9/11 The United States, The United Kingdom, and many other nations formed a coalition against the Ba’athist regime of Saddam Hussein. The coalition force invaded in 2003 to overthrow Saddam’s dictatorship and establish a democratic state in the Middle East. Although in some instances realism can describe the invasion of Iraq, the theory of Liberalism best describes the invasion because of liberal notions such as collective security and the belief that cooperation can lead to beneficial outcomes to all involved. “Liberalism holds that human nature is basically good and that people can improve
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“Realism reflects a view of the individual as primarily fearful and power seeking.” (Mingst and Arreguin-Toft, 76). This can be seen when Saddam Hussein tried to invade two of his neighbors. It was fearful when he invaded Iran because of Iran’s Shia majority population as well as equal military strength, while the invasion of Kuwait can be seen as an expansion of Iraqi power and authority. But when it comes to the 2003 United States invasion of Iraq it could be seen as an attempt to assert American power and influence over that part of the world. “Power, in turn, is primarily thought of in terms of the material resources” (Mingst and Arreguin-Toft, 76). It can be said that a major reason for invading Iraq was to invade its oil fields instead. Oil is a very important commodity so this can help support a realist argument.
While Realism can explain some aspects of the Iraq war it is not the best explanation. “Their most important concern is to increase their own relative power.”(Mingst and Arreguin-Toft, 77). This clearly doesn’t describe what happened following the United States invasion of Iraq. After the initial invasion, the United States did not stay indefinitely. Iraq did not become the fifty-first state. Since the United States did not annex Iraq or conquer it for resources as a realist would want the theory does not explain every aspect of what happened in
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The international relations theory that best supports the United States and coalition invasion of Iraq in 2003 is Liberalism. The cooperation between the United States and the coalition of the willing is an example of cooperation on the international level. In an effort to improve the moral and material conditions of Iraq through military intervention is a prime example of Wilsonian and Liberal thought. In the end, the attempt to expand democracy in the name of human rights proves that the Iraq war is an example of Liberal International relations theory.

Works Cited
Hitchens, Christopher. "So, Mr. Hitchens, Weren 't You Wrong about Iraq?" Slate Magazine. N.p., 19 Mar. 2007. Web. 30 Sept. 2016.
Horowitz, David. "FrontPage Magazine - Why We Went to War in Iraq." FrontPage Magazine - Why We Went to War in Iraq. N.p., June-July 2007. Web. 30 Sept. 2016.
Horowitz, David. "Why We Were In Iraq." Frontpage Mag. N.p., 22 June 2015. Web. 30 Sept. 2016.
Mingst, Karen A., and Ivan M. Arreguín-Toft. Essentials of International Relations. N.p.: n.p., n.d. Print.
Schifferes, Steve. "BBC NEWS | Americas | US Names 'coalition of the Willing '" BBC News. BBC, 18 Mar. 2003. Web. 30 Sept.

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