An Alliance of Democracies

Ivo Daalder & James Lindsey propose a new international organisation – an Alliance of Democratic States

Sovereignty carries with it a responsibility to protect citizens against mass violence and a duty to prevent internal developments that threaten others. We need to build an international order that reflects how states organize themselves internally. The great dividing line is democracy. Democratic states pose far less of a threat to other countries and are often more capable than autocracies. That is why democratic nations should rally together to pursue their common interests.

We need an Alliance of Democratic States. This organization would unite nations with entrenched democratic traditions, such as the United States and Canada; the European Union countries; Japan, South Korea, New Zealand and Australia; India and Israel; Botswana and Costa Rica. Membership would be open to countries where democracy is so rooted that reversion to autocratic rule is unthinkable.

Like NATO during the Cold War, the Alliance of Democratic States should become the focal point of American foreign policy. Unlike NATO, however, the alliance would not be formed to counter any country or be confined to a single region. Rather, its purpose would be to strengthen international cooperation to combat terrorism, curtail weapons proliferation, cure infectious diseases and curb global warming. And it would work vigorously to advance the values that its members see as fundamental to their security and well-being — democratic government, respect for human rights, a market-based economy. [Washington Post]

Democracies are not like-minded; but such an alliance of democracies can provide an alternative centre of legitimacy to the dopey UN Security Council. Such an alliance would represent the popular opinion of more than one-third of the world’s population; far more than what the Security Council can claim to do.

Daalder and Lindsey suggest that the United States should lead such an alliance. The United States is a natural leader of such an alliance, but as the authors should know – leadership in a democratic context has to be earned, not assumed.

4 thoughts on “An Alliance of Democracies”

  1. This is not the first time I have seen this Idea and I hope its not the last. The UN has not served its purpose for to long and has become a despots and dictators club. It amazes me that the US feels it needs approval of a organization whose memembers include governments who treat there people like cattle. There is no need to name names or point to examples. One can just go read the UN reports on human rights abuse then see which countries have charged that committee in the last three years.
    Its time for something diffrent.

  2. Huh,
    That’s rich, the US is a leading democracy? Our Dubya? Our dear harmless Rummy boy? Sugar picking Cheney?

    Nitin, I am not sure why you posted this “US is a natural leader of such an alliance”. I thought you would recognise the US for what it is right now, an imperial hegemony. They don’t need anybody now, they didn’t need anybody since WW 2.

    We should form a BRIC, Pakistan will rue the day they allowed US to come close to our mutual problem. I am hoping INC with their non-aligned shit will warily look at US moves in the region. Pakistan’s Hamid Gul, who is a smart ass & knows the Americans deepest ambitions.

    Divide and Conquer.
    Divide and Conquer.
    Divide and Conquer.

    Go read this, o ye of the horseblinkers.
    http://www.rediff.com/news/2004/feb/12inter.htm

    We should reconcile with Pakistan, China. All of us should face this thing together.

    I DON’T believe in religion. We are one and the same: Bangla, India, Pak. (listed alphabetically)

    Have you guys looked at a map? Americans have bases at every strategic place in world. They have Afghanistan, Iraq, one of the “stans”. They WILL try to control oil to India, Pakistan and China. Why do they want to dominate? I am also searching for the whole gamut of reasons. here is my thought so far: because they don’t like to be dictated in economic policy? History teaches us, whenever a country gets too rich and is too weak to defend itself, it is invaded. For George Fernandes and his ilk: if China wanted to f*** us, it would have in the late 1960’s, why they didn’t f*** us outright in that disastrous war of 1962? Why will they try to f*** us now, when we got a somewhat credible N-strike? Russia won’t f***k us, it has to get past several buffers. As a side note why did they enter Afghanistan? They wanted a warm water port, thsi maneuver was thought out since the old Russian empire conflict with the Britishers.

    Pak wants to f*** us, but we can contain them. What we or anybody cannot contain right now is US of A. We first got to be the dominant economies with China, Russia, Brazil/Argentina, SA. We don’t want to align with Japan, S.korea who are totally dominated by US. They are immaterial. Then we wait for US to try to outspend all of us together, which they will ultimately fail. We should see EU and another bloc countering US by the 2040’s. We should not fall into the credit trap, which will devastate the lives of common American folk.

  3. It is the fundamental belief of this blog that India and the United States have so much in common that the two countries have the potential to influence global affairs, for the better. Better than they would, if they were to try it alone.

    The US and India are in different stages of development. While I am all for India to set and follow policies which serve its national interest, I do not see why these have to be at a cost of better relations with America. India is strong enough to disagree with the US where it thinks – the Iraq war for example, and close enough to support the US where it should – like in the war on terror.

    By believing statements from the likes of Hamid Gul, you may end up allowing him to divide and rule.

    The jehadis would like nothing better than to divide American and its natural allies.

  4. Clearly, the issue of New Delhi’s relationship with Washington will be in focus, as there has been a growing perception, especially within the left, that the previous government was too close to the United States of America. There will now be pressure from the communist parties, in particular, to review this relationship. But it would be most unfortunate if India-US ties were derailed because of ideological reasons. The fact remains that the US is India’s largest trading partner and the world’s only superpower. It continues to be the most preferred destination for Indian students and professionals, and the Indian expatriate community is easily one of the most influential in the US. A sustained engagement with the US, under these circumstances, is not just desirable but essential. It is necessary, therefore, to not view the world through the coloured spectacles of the Cold War.
    – The Telegraph, Calcutta
    http://www.telegraphindia.com/1040526/asp/opinion/story_3290640.asp

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