President George W. Bush concluded his final debate with John Kerry by declaring his faith in "the ability of liberty to transform societies, to convert a hostile world to a peaceful world." Now part of his rhetorical repertoire, this statement springs not just from the religious basis of his thinking, but more importantly it is a core principle of what is called the theory of "democratic peace." That theory does not insist that democracies are necessarily peaceful in general. But the last...
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