The research will focus on democracy which is a broad concept that refers to the rule by the majority. Ideally, in a democracy sovereign power is vested with the people who may choose to either exercise directly or through elected representatives. Many countries across the world have adopted democracy as their form of governance with varying levels of success. The research will focus on Iraq after the U.S. invasion because it has been on the path to choosing democracy, but so far sectarian conflicts and extremist opposition have made it almost impossible.
Can democracy thrive in Iraq?
Are there institutions that support democracy in Iraq?
Are the citizens of Iraq ready to adopt democratic governance?
Democracy will bring stability in Iraq
Iraqi citizens will fully embrace the concept of democracy despite the fact that it was introduced by the U.S. which invaded them.
The concept of democracy was first formulated in Greek Athens by Aristotle. Based on his assumptions, a thriving democracy must have a constitution that guides how people live within a given country. In addition, it provides guidance on the establishment of political offices and the procedure for occupancy. He also insisted on justice as a key pillar for democracy where the minority will have a way with their say while the majority will always have their way. The research will use this particular theoretical framework to justify the aftermath of the U.S. invasion of Iraq.
The research will focus on Iraqi which was ruled by Ba’ath Party, but after the fall of Saddam Hussein, a constitution was adopted following the 2005 successful referendum (Avant and Sigelman 2010). A 275-member council was then elected in the parliamentary election which led to the formation of the government. The government has three arms that include the executive, the legislature and the judiciary. Democracy in Iraq has remained a far-fetched dream due to the parochial interests of leaders who benefit when conflict thrives.
In addition, the research will look at the prospects of democracy in Iraq which remain very law because the country lacks a shared sense of nationality. In addition, the state was carved out of three former Ottoman provinces with the end of World War One. Particularly, the borders were drawn without considering the loyalties of the natives. For instance, the Shia population was divided right in the middle of Iraq and Kuwait. On the other hand, Kurdish lands also faced the same fate, and on the other hands, the Shiites were not ready to submit to the Sunni minority rule. It will further demonstrate how the random grouping of individuals has frustrated democracy in Iraq and destabilizes all the institutions that could help strengthen the same (Isakhan 2012).
The study will further examine why Iraq has not made any recent progress towards democracy since it has been pre-occupied by the fight against the Sunni extremists and the Taliban group. These two militia groups have frustrated peace that is essential to holding any democratic elections in the country. Ideally, the state has no history of democratic institutions. In addition, the concept of democracy was introduced in Iraq by the U.S after the fall of Saddam Hussein. Therefore, the study will focus on how the native Iraqis have found it challenging to adopt democracy as it appears as a foreign ideology that does not fit in the context of the country (Sluglett 2003).
The prospects for Iraq to become a democracy remain very remote considering the country’s history of oppression. Local leaders have always adopted the use of force to bring the nation together creating bitterness and resentment from the people who view it as an act of oppression. Existing hostility between the three major tribes in Iraq run so deep that can hardly be remedied. On the other hand, historical oppression of the Kurds and Shiite Muslims has created deep-running divisions in the country that has made it impossible to bring the groups together in a democratic election (Webster 2011).
Noteworthy, Iraq has long been considered a war zone since the days of the Ottoman dominion, and that has not changed much in the present day. The study will look at how Abu Dhabi supports the conservative Wahhabi of the Sunni Muslims while Qatar finances the Sunni militant group keen on re-establishing an Islamic Caliphate while Saudi Arabia is keen on protecting sacred Islamic sites to the south (Brewer 2011). Consequently, the divergent interests of the neighbors have turned the country into a warzone thus reducing the prospects for democracy.
The research will conclude that even though Iraq has tried to establish institutions that would aid democratic governance, the sectarian fights have significantly hampered the efforts. Also, the long history of instability caused by infighting has made it impossible to introduce democratic governance. Furthermore, lack of a unifying factor between the three major groups has made it almost impossible to unite the country towards a common purpose like democracy.
- Avant, Deborah & Lee Sigelman. 2010. Private security and democracy: Lessons from the US in Iraq. Security Studies, 19(2), 230-265.
- Brewer, Susan A. 2011. Why America fights: Patriotism and war propaganda from the Philippines to Iraq. Oxford University Press.
- Isakhan, Benjamin. 2012. Democracy in Iraq: History. Politics, Discourse.
- Sluglett, Peter. 2003. Iraq after the US Invasion. ISIM newsletter, 13, 2.
- Webster, Gerald R. 2011. American nationalism, the flag, and the invasion of Iraq. Geographical Review, 101(1), 1-18.