NELSON INSTITUTE DIRECTOR REVIEWS BOOK ON MILITARY INTERVENTION AND “NATION-BUILDING”

March 14, 2007

HARRISONBURG—In a review published in the current issue of the international affairs journal American Foreign Policy Interests, Dr. J. Peter Pham, Director of the Nelson Institute for International and Public Affairs at James Madison University, reviews the new edition of Dr. Kimberly Zisk Marten’s book, Enforcing the Peace: Learning from the Imperial Past.

According to Dr. Pham’s review, “what distinguishes Marten’s study from other works which have covered the same terrain, the use of military forces by strong liberal democratic states to keep or restore peace and rebuild order in weaker states, is that it does not treat these ‘nation-building’ exercises as a novel phenomenon of the post-Cold War. Instead, the author “finds parallels with an older attempt by Western liberal democracies to control and remake foreign societies, the colonialism of the turn of the twentieth century.” In the reviewer’s judgment, “Marten’s treatise eloquently demonstrates that that it takes both material interest and moral concern—on the part of both the intervener and the object of intervention—to successfully sustain the arduous task of achieving peace and security after mass conflict and upheaval.”

American Foreign Policy Interests is a bimonthly journal published by Taylor & Francis for the National Committee on American Foreign Policy, a research organization founded in 1974 by the late Dr. Hans J. Morgenthau and dedicated to identifying, articulating, and helping to advance the national interests of the United States from a nonpartisan perspective within the framework of political realism. Dr. Pham was elected a member of the National Committee’s Board of Advisors in January 2006.

For the text of the review, click here.