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War and Democratic ConstraintHow the Public Influences Foreign Policy$
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Matthew A. Baum and Philip B. K. Potter

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780691164984

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691164984.001.0001

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Coalition Stories: Cases from the Iraq Coalition

Coalition Stories: Cases from the Iraq Coalition

(p.193) 7 Coalition Stories: Cases from the Iraq Coalition
War and Democratic Constraint

Matthew A. Baum

Philip B. K. Potter

Princeton University Press

This chapter examines the decisions of the United Kingdom, Spain, Germany, and Poland regarding whether they would join with the United States in the Iraq coalition, the goal of which was to remove Saddam Hussein from power. Among these countries, there was much variation in both key variables identified as the ingredients of constraint and in the extent to which leaders were responsive to pressure from either their domestic publics or the United States. The key lesson from these case studies is that democratic constraint is fragile and elusive. These cases point to a variety of means by which policy makers outmaneuvered a consistently antiwar European public. Media and partisan political opposition are clearly an important part of the overall story and, more significantly, are among the few factors that hold steady from case to case.

Keywords:   media, United Kingdom, Spain, Germany, Poland, United States, Iraq coalition, leaders, democratic constraint, political opposition

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