民主能否战胜恐怖?

布什政府发动伊拉克战争有三个重要的理论依据,其中只有一条似乎还站得住脚:那就是对中东进行民主化改造,并以此来削弱恐怖分子的根基。但与美国政府先前提出的大规模杀伤性武器迫在眉睫的危机或萨达姆·侯赛因支持基地组织的指控相比,这条理由在现实中真能站得住脚吗?

随着入侵后委派的调查人员认定伊拉克并未储存大规模杀伤性武器,情报部门现在认定:伊拉克战争的实际效果无非是给基地组织在整个伊斯兰世界的招募活动注入了一针强心剂。在这样的情况下,布什政府也就自然而然地强调所谓的民主化作用。实际上,这已经成了布什连任任期内最为重要的主题。正如国务卿康多莉扎·赖斯在不久前的开罗讲话中谈到的那样,“自由和民主是战胜仇恨、分离和暴力的最有力的思想武器。”

愤世嫉俗者认为这不过是用来推卸责任的言论,只是由于另外两个战争借口都已经土崩瓦解,它才开始被世界所关注。更重要的是,怀疑者也对政府将民主与减少恐怖联系起来的说法疑虑重重。归根结底,正是世界历史最悠久的民主国家-英国的公民策划了不久前对伦敦的恐怖袭击。与此相似,2001年9月11日以前,策划美国有史以来最大恐怖袭击的也是美国公民。

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