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Arkansas123 July 4th, 2013 4:18pm

During the eight-year Revolutionary War, France provided considerable support to the United States so that it could defeat Great Britain. Today, does the United States have an obligation to provide similar support to revolutions in foreign countries?

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DunkinFrunk Austin area, Texas
07/04/13 1:37 pm

We've been providing support to foreign nations for 150 years, our debt has been paid a thousand times over.

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boboli
07/04/13 9:36 am

The French did themselves a disservice supporting us. Our victory added fuel to the instigation of the French Revolution.

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skinner Jersey City
07/04/13 7:31 pm

Nope, they did the French people a service

boboli
07/04/13 7:39 pm

Yeah... That doesn't really make any sense.

skinner Jersey City
07/04/13 7:40 pm

The French people were able to defeat the monarchy and free themselves at least temporarily from the clutches of despotism. So it didn't help their government but it helped the people.

boboli
07/04/13 7:47 pm

I would disagree. The National Assembly was really ineffective, the National Convention brought the reign of terror, the Directory was corrupt and did nothing good, and Napoleon was a despot. The French people weren't really helped, just killed.

skinner Jersey City
07/04/13 7:53 pm

"Temporarily" I understand Napoleon was a dictator. And while the National Assembly was infective and the Directory was corrupt, I will take corruption, danger, and inefficiency over despotism and starvation any day

boboli
07/04/13 7:59 pm

The starvation was due to bad harvests, not the king. The majority of the French probably couldnt care less who was in power as long as they could feed themselves and weren't being guillotined. I would take despotism over the Reign of Terror any day.

skinner Jersey City
07/05/13 4:41 am

The aristocracy was still having feasts, so they could have supplied more food, but in the end I guess the difference bêtween you and I is that I would take dangerous freedom over slightly safer oppression any day.

boboli
07/05/13 5:01 am

Just as rich merchants also had enough food. In democracy as in not, the rich are comfortable while the poor starve. A different government doesn't change that.

skinner Jersey City
07/05/13 5:34 am

A different government gave them liberty at least for a period of time.

boboli
07/05/13 7:46 am

A government that passed decrees (March 9, 1792) to forbid them form "hoarding" (aka storing) their own grain when they grew unhappy with it, told stories of "equality before the law" and then named "active" and "inactive citizens", and allowed

boboli
07/05/13 7:48 am

Robespierre to execute tens of thousands. They had little more "freedom" than they had had. The mere fact that the French allowed Napoleon to become emperor control that they thought absolutism was a better solution than their mangled republic.

skinner Jersey City
07/05/13 5:01 pm

Fair point, I still think its better to strive for democracy and suffer than to suffer under a monarch.

boboli
07/05/13 5:44 pm

That's possible. The French Revolution was pretty awful though, and I don't think it did anything to spread democracy in Europe, since the resulting Congress of Europe did so much to prevent further revolutions in other countries.

boboli
07/05/13 5:44 pm

Though I agree with the general sentiment.

CTYankee!!! Connecticut
07/04/13 9:32 am

No. France didn't do it in the spirit of democracy or freedom but rather it served their national interests in curbing the British empire. Keep in mind it was not the France & Britain of today. They were bitter enemies.

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TomM
07/04/13 9:46 am

Absolutely correct

Arkansas123 Neoconservative
07/04/13 10:08 am

Couldn't one say that the active promotion of liberal democracy in foreign countries advances the American national interest?

leary Dulag Luft
07/04/13 10:35 am

Arkansas, I'd rather not give foreign aid and favored nation status to tyrants. But the problem is with whoever is deciding who is a patriot and who is a tyrant. Dems liked Morsi, GOPs liked the Shah.

Arkansas123 Neoconservative
07/04/13 10:49 am

I don't think the Shah was that bad.

en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/White_Revolution

Yes, I know that he jailed and tortured political opponents, mostly Islamists and communists.

TomM
07/04/13 10:57 am

I'm not supporting active involvement, which includes giving weapons. Passive support such as embargo is good in my opinion.

CTYankee!!! Connecticut
07/04/13 12:39 pm

AK123, you are correct that promoting democracy is in our strategic interest. It was in both Bush & Obama's national security strategy. But, it is not our interest simply because we are paying it forward. Democracies tend to be more friendly to us

JollyMan93 Big Sky Guy
07/04/13 9:29 am

Not to the ones who hate us like in the Middle East

shellybaxter1234 Peaceful Place
07/04/13 9:21 am

I think we've paid back that debt to the world at least 10X over

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