Johan Galtung, one of the founders of modern peace studies, provides a wide-ranging panorama of the ideas, theories and assumptions on which the study of peace is based. The book is organized in four parts, each examining the one of the four major theoretical approaches to peace. The first part covers peace theory, exploring the epistemological assumptions of peace. In Part Two conflict theory is examined with an exploration of nonviolent and creative handling of conflict. Developmental theory is discussed in Part Three, exploring structural violence, particularly in the economic field, together with a consideration of the ways of overcoming that violence. The fourth part is devoted to civilization theory.
Chapter 4: Democracy : Dictatorship = Peace : War?
Democracy : Dictatorship = Peace : War?
Are Democracies Belligerent or Peaceful?
The following is an effort to explore some aspects of the possible linkage between domestic politics and foreign policy at a crucial point: democracy domestically, belligerence abroad.1
According to their self-image, democracies are not belligerent, engaging in war; and not even bellicist, inclined to resort to war. They are peace-loving, stressing the peaceful pursuit of their goals, including peace. Only very reluctantly do they occasionally find themselves forced to use arms abroad. And yet the USA, for instance,2 has used arms abroad more than 200 times (averaging about once per year) – each time supposedly against a strong isolationist and pacifist inclination. Credible? War activities have often been referred ...