FORA Politics

Season 2007 Episode 1117

American Exceptionalism and the War on Terror

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American Exceptionalism and the War on Terror
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American Exceptionalism, the War on Terror and the Rule of Law in the Islamic World with discussants Neal K. Katyal, Michael S. Paulsen, David B. Rivkin, Nadine StrossenSince at least the time of the American Revolution, America has been a revolutionary force for democracy and liberty in world affairs. Some have called us a dangerous and revolutionary nation. American ideas about democracy and liberty have played a role over the last 200 years in the French Revolution, the Latin American wars of independence from Spain and Portugal, reform efforts in Britain, the revolutions of 1848, Woodrow Wilson's war to make the world safe for democracy, the Second World War struggle against the Nazis and fascists, and the cold war struggle against communist totalitarianism. Is it fair to say that Americans have spread our system of government to Western and Eastern Europe, to Latin America, to Japan, and to much of the rest of the world? If so, what role, if any, should America play in spreading democracy and liberty to the Islamic World? Do we have a special responsibility in Iraq or elsewhere to spread our ideas about freedom, self-government, and the rule of law? What are the limits on America's foreign policy responsibilities? Should we be an exemplar of liberty and democracy only, or should we actively seek to spread our way of life around the world? Can or should a country that believes in liberty and democracy ever engage in imperialism? - The Federalist Societymoreless
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