A constant in an ever-changing world: Washington's pursuit of its interests through regime change after 1989

Weinstein, A., 2016. A constant in an ever-changing world: Washington's pursuit of its interests through regime change after 1989. PhD, Nottingham Trent University.

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Abstract

This dissertation is a study of the "policy trajectories" followed by those national governments which, at one point or another over the course of the January 1, 1990 - September 10, 2001 period, were the targets of "successful" Washington-backed regime change campaigns. My analytical focus is on determining if the "successful" occurrence of a Washington-backed regime change in a non-US country appears to serve as an inflection point in the "policy trajectory" that is pursued by the target country's national government. I review those policies and policy stances which provide insights into the basic "line" that a given non-US national government adhered to with regard to economic matters, foreign affairs as well as the domestic, non-economic sphere. I make determinations as to whether, after the occurrence of a Washington-backed regime change, the
targeted national government became either; 1) more committed or less committed to implementing policies consistent with the principles of a "free-market" capit
alist economy; 2) more committed or less committed to making "its own" country hospitable to specifically American private foreign investment; 3) more committed or less committed to aligning its geopolitical stance with that of
Washington; 4) more committed or less committed to making "its own" internal political system more genuinely democratic (as opposed to authoritarian;) 5) more committed or less committed to respecting fundamental human rights.
The first three research questions in this dissertation reflect my own ideological inclinations, influenced as they
are by certain foundational principles of Marxism. The other two research questions in this dissertation are based on the "mainstream" liberal and neo-conservative outlooks in
contemporary western politics. Liberal and neo-conservative intellectuals and public figures generally claim that Washington's foreign interventions are based on an enlightened and progressive desire to spread the 'blessings' of liberal parliamentary democracy and decent human rights practices as widely as possible outside the borders of the US. Three non-US regime changes provide the raw data from which the validity of all five research questions can be evaluated. A portion of this dissertation is devoted to better under standing critical realism and to explaining how
it can serve to provide an important "conceptual-philosophical" support for the Marxist and World-Systems Theory perspectives. The elaboration of the various ontological and epistemological assumptions that
critical realism shares with the Marxist and World Systems Theory outlooks takes on is significant given that these outlooks served as the ideological and intellectual well-
spring from which I drew the inspiration for the formulation of the three research questions which I am advancing
as my own in this dissertation. Furthermore, I provide explanations for why the utilization of the case-study method not only flows logically from an acceptance and an application in the study process of the central principles of critical realism, but why it may well be compatible with Marxist and World Systems Theory-influenced attempts to understand complex socio-historical phenomena and processes. Critical realism, which emphasizes the vital importance of identifying the existence of particular potential causal factors in the sphere of human affairs, as well as Marxism, with its rather comprehensive and well-rounded vision of what constitutes the sources of exploitation, power and weakness in the modern world capitalist economy, can all see their own explanatory powers being enhanced via the careful elaboration of the kind of detailed historical accounts that constitute positive examples of how the case-study method should be applied for the in-depth analysis and ever-better
comprehension of the social world.

Item Type: Thesis
Creators: Weinstein, A.
Date: December 2016
Rights: This work is the intellectual property of the author. You may copy up to 5% of this work for private study, or personal, non-commercial research. Any re-use of the information contained within this document should be fully referenced, quoting the author, title, university, degree level and pagination. Queries or requests for any other use, or if a more substantial copy is required, should be directed to the owner(s) of the Intellectual Property Rights.
Divisions: Schools > School of Arts and Humanities
Depositing User: Linda Sullivan
Date Added: 21 Feb 2017 16:12
Last Modified: 21 Feb 2017 16:12
URI: http://irep.ntu.ac.uk/id/eprint/30239

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