Talk:Democratic peace theory/Archive 1

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The article is incomplete. Rummell did not originate the idea. I'm quoting: "Much of the contemporary research on this subject, however, can be traced back to an article by Dean Babst, a research scientist at the New York State Narcotic Addiction Control Commission, that was evidently originally published in 1964 and was later reprinted in 1972 in the journal Industrial Research"


Also, there are several suggested counterexamples of democracies at war. see (Sept. 24, 2004)



I have removed some of the communist conflicts as examples of wars which was valid critique and added why the confederate states was not a democracy. Otherwise I see no valid critique. Ultramarine 12:59, 3 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Please do not meddle with the edit history of this Talk page: I repeat:

If the following are all true:

  • The North did not have absolute manhood suffrage - and it didn't.
  • The South gave the vote to 30-40% of the adult male suffrage
  • And the populations are comparable (and for this purpose 2-1 would be comparable)

Then the percentage of enfranchised adult men in the United States as a whole cannot have been much higher than the 67% that Ultramarine claims as Rummel's dividing line. That's arithmetic. Septentrionalis 23:20, 5 Jun 2005 (UTC)

The clause about wars between third-world democracies and dictatorship in the third was deleted because it was vague and void of examples, and there were very few examples of democracy in the Cold War Third World to fight wars - at least in the sense required by strongest DPT. Septentrionalis 23:20, 5 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Federations and Confederations

A union of democracies, where each member state is effectively represented in the federal legislature, should be considered a democracy for purposes of this theory if a sufficient number of states are democracies (using whatever definition applies at the moment) so that war cannot be effectively waged without their consent.

In the instant case of the American Civil War, in 1851, Virginia abolished the property requirement, and allowed all adult white men, other than felons and lunatics, to vote. Since the slave population was a bit under half the white population, this suggests that Virginia met the 2/3 requirement, or was as close as the accuracy of census roles will permit.

Similarly, Pennsylvania had long established universal manhood sufferage by 1860 and had no slaves. Other states on both sides qualified as well, but I think these two suffice. Each was practically sine qua non to effectively prosecuting the war on their respective side. Both had 2/3 manhood sufferage and had had it for three years, both had strong democratic traditions, both qualify as democracies under the strong form, yet each enthusiastically supported the war against the other.

Rather than trying to exclude the American Civil War, would it not be better to admit that, under the special circumstances of a disintegrating union, the "better angels of our nature" are likely to be out-shouted. If the spirit of reason and compromise had existed sufficiently in 1860 to avoid war, the same spirit would probably have sufficed to avoid secession entirely.Robert A West 6 Jun 2005

Foreign policy and wars was decided by the Confederacy, the individual states could not decide that on their own. Thus they cannot be considered separate nations. Ultramarine 15:58, 6 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Virginia chose, on her own, to join and remain in the Confederacy. Without those decisions, the war would have been very different. If Pennsylvania had not responded vigorously to Lincoln's call for volunteers and other support - and she was constitutionally free to refuse what was asked in 1861-2 - the war on the Union side would have been impractical. Both Va. and Pa. chose war; and both were democracies, even by Rummel's criteria. Septentrionalis 17:29, 8 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Actually, the issue is even more fundamental. Consider a federal union of N states, of which K are democracies and (N-K) are not, and where K may be zero. Further presume that representation is mainly indirect: there are no or only limited popular elections at the federal level. Do we exclude all such unions from being democracies? This excludes the United States for much of its history, even though it was the most democratic state around. In fact, since the states technically retain the consitutional right to appoint presidential electors by legislative action, it excludes the United States today. If, to avoid this silly result, we include such a union if K is sufficiently small, we are back to my original point. Robert A West 19:24, 8 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Freedom House finds no nation with universal suffrage before 1900, so U.S. may have been the most democratic at the time but certainly less democratic than today. Now Rummel draws an admittedly rather arbitrary line between democracies and non-democracies. The question if whether the Confederacy fulfills those criteria or not. If the U.S. didn't, then there is no contest, the Civil War was not a war between democracies. That the states voluntarily choose to enter the Confederacy is uninteresting, by doing so they gave up their exclusive right to exercise supreme authority in their geographic region, which in politics is considered an absolute requirement to qualify as nation. You will not find any example of states belonging to a similar confederacy being accepted as independent nations in any international organization. There certainly was no foreign recognition that any of the states were independent nations at the time. Ultramarine 21:05, 15 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Miscellaneous facts

Please read Hungarian revolution before editing on it. There is near-consensus on wikipedia and elsewhere that it was a revolution, and Imre Nagy's government was a change of regime. The debate is over the nature and intentions of the Revolutionary government. Unlike Dubček's, it lasted days, instead of months, before the Soviet tanks arrived. Anyone with sources which say otherwise should argue it there, not here. Septentrionalis 02:34, 7 Jun 2005 (UTC)

The plurality of sources call Venice, Genoa, and Florence democracies or proto-democracies - excluding vulgar Marxists, who cannot admit that such capitalist societies were democratic. They do not meet Rummel's cirteria, but they come at least as close as Athens - closer than Syracuse Septentrionalis 02:34, 7 Jun 2005 (UTC)

I believe no major deletions remain unjustified. Septentrionalis 02:42, 7 Jun 2005 (UTC)

From Wikipedia "Soon after, the popular communist politician Imre Nagy was installed as Prime Minister by the Hungarian communist party.". Thus Hungary can still be considered a Communist nations. Ultramarine 06:17, 7 Jun 2005 (UTC)

But if the government of November 1956 was a new Communist regime, Hungary does not falsify "BPT"- any more than Czechoslovakia does. Therefore this page need not argue whether or not it was. Description of Nagy therefore summarized to Stalinist, which should cover it. Septentrionalis 20:50, 8 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Do not again do a mass deletion of arguments you do not like, including the numerous new discussions of specific cases. Ultramarine 06:22, 7 Jun 2005 (UTC)

To the best of my recollection, I deleted exactly one argument, justified above; I rephrased several criticisms. I believe I left them phrased in the spirit those who hold them would wish. The other edits are disagreements on matters of fact. Line by line edit will follow. Septentrionalis 22:30, 7 Jun 2005 (UTC)

The percentage of males eligible to vote in Great Britain or the United States at a given time is not a question of claims. It is a question of fact. Rummel's theory is being given the benefit of the doubt; the act of 1884 enfranchised not quite two-thirds of adult males. It would be churlish to insist on the actual date of 1918 - although a critic would be technically justified in doing so. Septentrionalis 22:43, 7 Jun 2005 (UTC)

The Young Turks took power, and restored the consistution, on July 24, 1908; they attempted to rule as Abdul-Hamid's constitutional ministers until the following April. The First Balkan War broke out on October 8, 1912 - more than four years after the change of regime, more than three after the deposition. Septentrionalis 02:44, 8 Jun 2005 (UTC)

But the election was in November and they only got real control of the cabinet after they amended the constitution in April 1909, after an attempted coup by the Sultan. So the war started before 4 years had passed. It is also doubtful that any of the opposzing Christian states very democratic enough since the Kings in all retained great power. Ultramarine 03:58, 8 Jun 2005 (UTC)

The number of democracies, by Rummel's definitions, at any given time, is also a question of fact - if it were not, the scientific status of DPT would be open to question. I do not want to deny that DPT, even the strongest form, is scientific. Between 1816 and 1870, I count at most three states which qualify as stabilized democracies under Rummel's criteria. What's your list? Septentrionalis 02:44, 8 Jun 2005 (UTC)

From Rummel website:
The list would be different, of course, for previous decades. For certain years of the 18th century, for example, it would include the Swiss Cantons, French Republic, and United States; for certain years during 1800-1850 it would include the Swiss Confederation, United States, France, Belgium, Great Britain, Netherlands, Piedmont, and Denmark. Ultramarine 03:58, 8 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Then Rummel is being inconsistent in support of his extreme version of DPT
  • Great Britain enfranchised significantly less than half her adult males before 1884-5.
  • France had an even more limited franchise before 1848; and Napoleon III ruled absolutely from December 2, 1851 to 1869. Given the three-year rule, this leaves only March through November 1851, during which civil liberties were being restricted in preparation for the coup.
  • The monarchs of Denmark, the Netherlands, Belgium, and Piedmont exercised great power. Piedmont had an appointed Senate until long after it was the Kingdom of Italy, named by the king, and with full power to propose and vote down legislation. See the 1911 Britannica for more, at which time it still existed. I believe the Italian Senate was not elected until 1948, but, given Mussolini, the exact date doesn't matter all that much.
  • Franchise in Switzerland depended on the canton, and it varied very much before 1847. The ones with manhood suffrage were the smallest ones. Berne was very large and very restrictive; she excluded some of the town itself, and had large sections, now Graubunden, which she considered conquered territory. But the average may have reached two-thirds.

This leaves at most two. I would add San Marino - if she can be counted a sovereign state, and not a Papal vassal, before 1860. No pair of these was in position to make war on each other, and San Marino was not going to suffer or inflict 1000 deaths in the field (or even 500 of each). Septentrionalis 17:04, 8 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Supporters instead note that out of 192 nations in the world in 2004, 119 were democratic — 62 percent of the worlds countries, using Rummel's criteria. This is POV - altered to NPOV. (Is there a list, btw, or only a number? I did not find it in the strictly limited time I have for this.) Septentrionalis 02:46, 8 Jun 2005 (UTC)

It is a number from Rummel Faq [1].
You might also find the litterature in support of DPT interesting [2] [3]. Ultramarine 03:58, 8 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Oh, I find it fascinating.... Septentrionalis 17:29, 8 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Wikipedia policy and copyvio

This is important. I observe from reading Rummel's sites (above on this talkpage, and in the sources in the article) that much of the article is a direct cut and paste from them. I understand the temptation to do this, because Rummel understands his own theory best, and expresses it with the most authority. But it is a violation of Wikipedia policy in two respects:

Less important, it imports Rummel's POV. He is perfectly entitled to have it on his own sites; but it does not make good Wikipedia. (He is also occasionally guilty of clotted academic prose. He is not alone, but it should be avoided). Read; understand; and then write.

More important, it is copyright infringement. Please see Wikipedia:copyright. This really has to be fixed as soon as possible. Septentrionalis 19:30, 8 Jun 2005 (UTC)

What are talking about? A theory cannot be copyrighted and even a short text can be copied under fair use. Please state exactly the so called infringement instead of giving vague accusations. Ultramarine 21:18, 8 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Substantial stretches of word-for-word duplication will not do. Please read the policies and put the article into compliance. (For all I know, it was non-compliant when you began to edit it. This is not an exercise in casting blame. ) Septentrionalis 22:03, 8 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Again, state your case instead of giving vague accusations. There is nothing here that is not fair use. Ultramarine 22:59, 8 Jun 2005 (UTC)
I took some time to look at this issue, and, while I found a scattered few key sentences that appear to have been lifted whole, I'm not sure what you believe rises to infringement. Can you be more helpful?Robert A West 21:43, 10 Jun 2005 (UTC)
I found two or three sentences which had been bodily lifted from Rummel's website while looking for something else. This led me to suspect that there were several, or many, more, and that the presentation of Rummel's position should be recast - preferably by the editor with the most empathy for it. If noone else does it, I will go through sentence by sentence; this will also help to distinguish "supporters of strongest DPT" from Rummel himself.
Which reminds me: is there any reason to phrase the present threefold distinction as weak/strong/strongest, which is being done essentially for reasons internal to the history of the article? IIRC, the weak/strong distinction was originally made in one of the plagiarisms from Rummel, but I'd

have to check. Septentrionalis 16:01, 11 Jun 2005 (UTC)


Based on this discussion, it seems clear that Rummel is indeed being inconsistent about his definition of democracy. At the Confederation/Federal level, the United States failed his 2/3 male sufferage criterion throughout the 18th century, and for most of the 19th, yet he accepts it as a democracy. The Confederacy was at least as democratic as the United States as a whole in 1800, and its component states were both individually more democratic and in existence for longer, yet he excludes it.

(He does suggest, in passing, that civil wars in which one side fails to achieve international recognition as a government are not the type of war he is discussing. Fair enough, but that is a weaker assertion than most people would understand by reading the opening of this article.)

As for the count of current democracies, Rummel doesn't provide us with a list, so his claim is impossible to check as it stands. Robert A West 19:23, 8 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Please give some source as support for these claims. Rummel's sources can be found in his books. Ultramarine 23:17, 8 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Are you questioning my facts, or just courteously reminding me to include a relevant source if I modify the article? I assure you that I will not modify the article without excellent sourcing, but the rules are less stringent in discussion.
In the meantime, Paragraph I is an obvious criticism based on facts widely available on the Web and in print. While I haven't bothered to find anyone prominent raising the precise point, it is substantially raised by as above cited. The other two paragraphs are meta-comments about the quality of the article and of the checkability of a source you cited.Robert A West 20:46, 10 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Criticisms vandalized

  • It is a question of fact how many nineteenth century regimes attained 67% male suffrage or lasted for three years. (Rummel's other, inconsistent, list belong in a subnote. Destroying the sequence of an argument is vandalism.
  • The cases of wars between democracies that can occur without violating Rummel's form of DPT should be listed in parallel.
  • The alternative explanation for the peace of 1945-1991, that the democracies were allies, has been rendered incoherent by Ultramarine's changes.
  • One position on the Hungarian revolution is that Nagy's government was a new Communist regime. I believe it to be the plurality position, and the article on the subject lists it first. This position supports the bloc peace alternative to DPT. Deleted without explanation.
You continue to misunderstand, and therefore to misrepresent, the "bloc theory" position on Hungary. I will try to recast. Please do not change the statement of the argument this time; answering it is another matter. (I will probably use 'Stalinist instead of the long indictment of Nagy; but that is entirely to make the sentence structure bearable. I view the two as equivalent.)

Note that the question of whether the Hungarian Communist Party chose Nagy or metely accepted him is one of the controversial points on the matter - but that should also be argued at Talk:1956 Hungarian Revolution. Septentrionalis 02:16, 9 Jun 2005 (UTC)

And on another note, I'm tired of seeing "thid" every time I turn to this article. Checking your spelling is a virtue. Septentrionalis 23:32, 8 Jun 2005 (UTC)

I added back some of your valid arguments. Note that you deleted my arguments like that Nagy's government was installed by the Communist party. You made numerous pov changes like changing "proponents points out" to "Proponents retreat to the strong form of DPT by arguing" and many times stating your opinion as fact without stating that it is the view of some critics. Nothing prevents you from correcting an old spelling mistake I did not make. Ultramarine 23:51, 8 Jun 2005 (UTc)
You have again deleted my arguments and made numerous pov changes to wording and titles. Ultramarine 09:27, 17 Jun 2005 (UTC)

I have corrected it two or three times. It reappeared on your edit of 22:58 ut. Do be more careful. Septentrionalis 02:03, 9 Jun 2005 (UTC)


All the Mexican presidents at the time of the conflicts with the U.S., like Mariano Paredes y Arrillaga, took their power in coup d'etats.

False; war was declared on the constitutional president Vicente Valentin Gomez Farias

As far as I can see, this is incorrect. Please give a source for a demcoratic election of this person and that he was president at the start of the War. Ultramarine 20:12, 15 Jun 2005 (UTC)
The course of Mexican history by Michael C. Meyer, William L. Sherman. (New York : Oxford University Press, 1979.) p343 Septentrionalis 00:30, 17 Jun 2005 (UTC)
See for example this reference. [4]. Maríano Paredes y Arrillaga took power in coup and entered Mexico city in January 1846. He left for the front in July 28 1846 and was arrested shortly after. The war began on April 25 1846. [5].

The War of the Pacific is excluded since Peru does not pass the time limit This claim contradicts both the State Dept. country study and Mariano Ignacio Prado. (Whether Rummel's arbitrary lines exclude it in some other fashion is another question.) Septentrionalis 00:42, 17 Jun 2005 (UTC)

By the way, did you get this claim about Peru from Rummel?Septentrionalis 20:43, 19 Jun 2005 (UTC)
You are correct. I move the war to another category.
Thus helping to demonstrate that Rummel's arbitrary criteria let through extremely few democracies before the 1920's>Thank you. Septentrionalis 18:31, 17 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Supporters note that Nagy was a Communist, had been an agent for the Soviet security apparatus earlier, and was installed by the Hungarian Communist Party. They find the argument that the regime was a new communist regime strange, since Rummel do not disallow a new democratic regime that follow immediately after another democratic regime. Irrelevant to the "bloc" explanation, which has a clear mechanism. Also disingenuous, since it omits Nagy's deposition by the HCP in 1955; his reinstatement was a revolutionary act. Septentrionalis 18:31, 17 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Note that this is not a peer-reviewed study, something of which there are in support of the democratic peace theory. Statement requiring evidence: most of Rummel's bibliography is op-eds and symposia presentations; most journals in the social sciences do not peer-review anyway.

Added links to several peer-reviewed studies. Ultramarine 19:19, 19 Jun 2005 (UTC)

(The People's Republic of China renounced her alliance with the Soviet Union in 1961, thereafter, [according to the critics,] creating a third, much smaller bloc of her own.) No, the statement is consensus among the sources, including those before Rummel published his theory, and those who have never heard of him.

Well, this is about the time after Rummel published his theory and the discussion and other research afte that. Ultramarine 19:20, 19 Jun 2005 (UTC)
1961 is not the '70's: this is nonsense.Septentrionalis 20:43, 19 Jun 2005 (UTC)

However, many hold that Nagy's government was a new communist regime, .... or that (despite the Stalinist record of its chief) it was effectively a non-Communist regime; ...and may have ceased to be part of the Warsaw pact bloc, becoming either a neutral or a Western power. This understates the case; again, there is consensus that one of these is true, and a virulent argument as to which. Either is consistent with the bloc theory.

Those who prefer other standards of NPOV, accuracy, or verifiability, may find Wikinfo more hospitable.

Add your arguments, do not delete mine. Ultramarine 19:20, 19 Jun 2005 (UTC)
It may be your argument; it remains irrelevant and disingenuous. Septentrionalis 21:01, 19 Jun 2005 (UTC)

They also note that many large-scale wars between dictatorships and between dictatorships and democracies in the Third World during the same period. This remains hopelessly vague. It is also false - directly, since BPT says nothing about wars between non-bloc members; and by suggestio falsi.

Why are you including Egypt, which neither was a first world nation nor a democracy? Ultramarine 19:21, 19 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Because, as stated, it is the closest thing to a conflict between established regimes in the same bloc.Septentrionalis 20:43, 19 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Are you arguing that states like Iraq and Libya belonged to the Soviet bloc? Ultramarine 20:47, 19 Jun 2005 (UTC)
I am boggled; how do you get from the Suez Crisis, which do see, to any statement about Iraq or Libya? Septentrionalis 20:59, 19 Jun 2005 (UTC)
If you argue that Egypt at the time was weakly part of a Western bloc, then nations like Libya, Syria, and Iraq who had ties with Soviet Union was part of the Soviet bloc at certin times during the Cold War. Ultramarine 21:03, 19 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Irrelevant here, since no ally of the Soviet Union went to war with them. Septentrionalis 23:09, 19 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Your definition of blocks would include the dictatorship of Pakistan in the US bloc while including democratic India in the Soviet block for certain years, making any connection with the DPT irrelevant. Ultramarine 23:26, 19 Jun 2005 (UTC)
False in fact: the commitment to India was never institutionslized as NATO or Warsaw Pact were. Fallacious in argument: Bloc peace theory makes no prediction whatever about peace between members of different blocs, since that depends on the collective decision of the two alliances (in the Soviet case, this would overwhelmingly be taken within the walls of the Kremlin, but it is still in principle a collective decision. Septentrionalis 23:39, 19 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Neither was Egypt a member of NATO.If the Soviet bloc includes democracies, like India and Chile, then even the bloc peaces theory allows war between democracies that belongs to different blocs. But there were no such wars. Ultramarine 23:55, 19 Jun 2005 (UTC)

(restoring full size) Error of fact: Neither India nor Chile were ever democratic members of the Soviet bloc, either as defined in the article or in contemporary usage. India was a neutral, resorting to temporary arrangements with all three blocs, perhaps most often with the Soviet Union against China; an example of the separateness of those two blocs.(Nehru invented the term "Third World" precisely to express this policy.) Those who argue that Chile was moving towards membership in the Soviet bloc in the summer of 1973 also contend that Chile was not then a democracy.

Error of reasoning: It is true that India was never at war with pre-Allende Chile. (Why should it be? What conflicts of interest did they have?) It is equally true that India was never at war with Allende or Pinochet either. Septentrionalis 18:03, 20 Jun 2005 (UTC)

If you argue that Egypt belonged to the Western bloc at the time of the Suez crises, when Egypt had nationalized the canal, the US had stopped aid, and Egypt bought weapons from the Communist states, then India belonged to Soviet bloc later. Ultramarine 12:51, 21 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Egypt had closer ties to Britain immediately before 1956 than India ever had to the Soviet Union. This makes it a marginal case for BPT; however, I judge, for the reasons given in text, that Egypt was not part of the Western bloc; nevertheless, Britain and France were restrained by their allies.Septentrionalis 14:49, 21 Jun 2005 (UTC)
If Eqypt was not part of the bloc, the bloc peace theory is not applicable. Ultramarine 15:48, 21 Jun 2005 (UTC)


[This line of discussion should be moved from the bottom of the page for clarity] And where in Sam Hill do you read a suggestion that 1956 Egypt was either a democracy or a first world nation? The question for bloc peace theory was whether Nasser was part of the western bloc, the structure of permanent and institutionalized alliances. (On the whole probably not) Please stop vandalizing what you have not understood. Septentrionalis 23:18, 19 Jun 2005 (UTC)

See above regarding India and Pakistan. Ultramarine 23:26, 19 Jun 2005 (UTC)
as is the response. Septentrionalis 23
42, 19 Jun 2005 (UTC)

More Vandalism and sophistry

This page continues to have any addition that counteracts the Rummelite POV deleted without explanation. This is a violation of Wikiquette. Please stop. Septentrionalis 18:07, 20 Jun 2005 (UTC)

===Rummel's criteria and classification===

The first class of objectors argue that the methodology employed in collecting the data for testing the theory has been unscientific, and that democracies have indeed have initiated conflict with one another at a rate much higher than what proponents have determined. These critics point out that "democracy" and "peace" are essentially contested concepts, difficult to operationalize for measurement, and so subjective that they run the risk of manipulation to arrive at a predetermined conclusion. For example, several opponents of the theory claim that World War I was a war between liberal democracies by that period's criteria and that later classifications of the German Empire as insufficiently democratic are spurious.

This is jargon; furthermore it understates the objections of these critics. Translating into English.

The "bloc peace theory" would imply that there should have been no wars between the non-democratic second world Communist states. Only if you haven't read the statemement of it.

Suez Crisis would be a question for bloc peace theory, whether Egypt were a democracy or not; since BPT does not mention democracy.


Please give some better sources than a summary of a Wall Street Journal article. [6] I removed it, please use scholarly references in the future or at least state what it is. Ultramarine 12:43, 21 Jun 2005 (UTC)

The quotation demonstrates the existence of the objection and states it better than I have, or am likely to without plagiarism. It is further reprinted by the Hoover Institution for the Study of War, Peace, and Democracy. By this standard, I would be justified in removing all references to Rummel's vanity site. Septentrionalis 15:10, 21 Jun 2005 (UTC)

It is one opinion article in a newspaper without any attempt at statistical analysis. Please use scholarly sources in the future. Ultramarine 15:37, 21 Jun 2005 (UTC)
The extreme version claims not to be a tendency, but a rule, even if an unexplained one. Debunking this does not require statistical tests. Furthermore, if the discussion of Rummel's theory were confined to a handful of poli-sci journals, neither he nor it would be notable. Septentrionalis 15:31, 22 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Statistical Note

"(This is a statistical weakness. Rummel's theory includes parameters: in this case, 2/3 as the minimum proportion of enfranchised males and 3 years as the minimum duration. The proper odds to judge a set of data which satisfies a theory deriving its parameters from that data is the chance that the data would satisfy the theory using, not those particular parameters, but any possible parameters.)"

Do you still have your Statistics 101 textbook? It will either have a general warning against applying statistical tests to the same data-set from which you derive the parameters, or it will confirm this statement. In any case, think it through for yourself. Septentrionalis 15:10, 21 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Well, Rummel's theory satisfies any stricter parameters and does not for any less strict parameters. Thus it makes a statement about any possible set of parameters. Ultramarine 15:53, 21 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Yes, but he calculates the odds that history would satisfy his choice of parameters, whereas he should be stating the odds that history would satisfy some set of parameters by chance, which are much higher. Septentrionalis 16:22, 21 Jun 2005 (UTC)
The current text do not in fact make a statistical analysis, or calculate any "odds" or compare dyads. Will add some more from Rummel website.


The following is a statement of the issues in dispute, for the record.

When I first saw Democratic peace theory, it was marked with Template:NPOV. Quite rightly. The theory comes in several forms. One extreme (as the article itself says) form is the assertion by R.J.Rummel that no two democracies have ever gone to war. The article is marked by an extreme bias towards Rummel's variant, with resulting POV problems.

First, this produces severe imbalance; most of the space in the article is devoted to Rummel. Much more should be devoted to Kant, for example.

Second, User Ultramarine does not take criticism of his idol well; although there is a section for it. Every criticism is edited so that it begins with Rummel's position, is interlarded with Rummel's position, and is followed by defense of Rummel's position. This appears to be a long-standing problem with this arricle - see this website. Furthermore, Ultramarine edits to prevent some criticisms being refered to all, deletes others, and insists on his own phrasing and argumentation of those he permits -even when this is a distortion of the criticism. For example, he permits the criticism that Rummel has a very narrow definition of democracy as a clotted paragraph of academic relativism, despite several separate attempts to rephrase it.

The particular censored criticisms (do they cut too close?) are that Rummel's theory deals with very few states; that Rummel's theory acrually leaves lots of room for democracies to harm each other and that Rummel derives his parameters from the data - and then calculates the odds of his pattern arriving by chance as though the parameters were independent of the data - an old statistical fallacy.

Third, in the process of defending Rummel, Ultramarine insists on several statements which I believe simply false. One criticism of Rummel is that the several democracies since 1945 have been at peace largely because they were allied against the Soviet Union.

He also insists on rewriting criticisms in such a manner as to reverse their sense: For example, the Suez crisis is a difficult case for the "Bloc peace theory" (for which see article) but I argue that Egypt was not in a "permanent and institutionalized alliance", and therefore was a member of no bloc. I have attempted to state this several times, only to have the text deleted or rendered into gibberish. (I will copy-edit text when it is no longer being persistently vandalised.) - I must thank Ultramarine for reminding me of this issue. Septentrionalis 15:17, 22 Jun 2005 (UTC)

In connection with this, he insists on attributing the statement The People's Republic of China renounced her alliance with the Soviet Union in 1961, thereafter creating a third, much smaller bloc of her own.) to Rummel's critics; although it is the consensus among people who have never heard of him. Ultramarine also insists that Rummel's critics have invented the claim that the Hungarian revolution of 1956 was (briefly) successful, and installed a new regime. While the article Hungarian revolution disputes on much, including whether the new regime was communist or not, they indicate consensus on this. [This has been amended now the page is being watched by others; after refusal for a long time. I hope this lasts. Septentrionalis 22:57, 23 Jun 2005 (UTC)]

Another unsubstantiated, and stubbornly repeated, claim, is that the articles in support of Rummel are published in peer-reviewed journal. I would have no problem with academic; but these are political scientists: peer-review, in the strict sense, would be unproductive, and is rare.

This would be a more acceptable form of Democratic peace theory. The excessive POV and the lack of balance still remain, but are soluble problems from this point.Septentrionalis 02:50, 22 Jun 2005 (UTC)

And this version is better copy-edited. Septentrionalis 19:33, 22 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Reply below here, please:

Pmanderson's edits violates NPOV. He has deleted opposing arguments that Egypt did not belong to the Western bloc during the Suez crises and that such a loose definition of "blocs" allows democracies like India to belong to the Soviet bloc for certain years and thus allows war between democracies in different blocs. He has previously deleted opposing views while keeping his own on subjects like the Hungarian revolution, many large scale third world wars between dictatorships, and that European states still have separate militaries and to a large degree separate foreign policy.

He has made strange POV descriptions of the view of the supporters like changing "proponents points out" to "proponents retreat to the strong form of DPT by arguing" and often states his own opinion as a fact, like changing "War between democracies?" to "War between democracies".

He insists that a WSJ opinion article [7] is a "paper" and cites from it. Unfortunately, he has little knowledge of the real academic statistical literature. He argues in his edition of the criticisms section that most critics accept the statistical tendency and are critical only of Rummel's version; if he actually had read any academic literature he would know that this is not true, there are much debate against all versions [8]. In fact, his version makes the criticisms weaker due to his lack a academic knowledge in this area. It would be preferable if another critic with more knowledge took his place so the critique could improve.

Unfortunately, he doesn't seem to understand the mathematical arguments in the academic literature [9].

As a minor point, the last version done by him makes several changes that violates standard wikipedia format and spelling and makes the text difficult to read. He removes titles and instead leaves double blank lines between paragraphs; have many dead links due to fault spelling; and is inconsistent in punctuation and labeling of external links. Ultramarine 10:41, 22 Jun 2005 (UTC)

New comments

I've just looked at the article, and at the series of recent edits. First, your criticism of his English is peculiar to say the least, given the mistakes that riddle your own contributions. Secondly, you seem to have a somewhat idiosyncratic understanding of what's meant by "neutral point of view" (see Wikipedia:Neutral point of view). I'm not saying that the issues are completely one-sided (I'm not in a position to say, to be honest), but you need to slow down and examine Wikipedia policy. Mel Etitis (Μελ Ετητης) 18:18, 22 Jun 2005 (UTC)
I fear that to Ultramarine, "fariness" to Rummel's version of DPT maans that criticisms of it must be deleted, vandalized and reduced to gibberish. Observe how carefully the statement of each class of criticism has been distanced from the evidence for it. (I do acknowledge the concession of some well-known facts.) Compare this version to the present text. Septentrionalis 21:33, 22 Jun 2005 (UTC)
I have included your arguments, but corrected your POV and the deletions of my arguments. Ultramarine 21:47, 22 Jun 2005 (UTC)
        • You have deleted many of my arguments.
        • An argument is vandalized when it is passed through an eggbeater. For example, the statement that there are very few democracies (by Rummel's official definition) has been changed and removed two or three paragraphs from its supporting evidence. (Rummel's count of eight uses a different standard. Any assertion or implication that England or Belgium had 67% male suffrage before 1850 is a lie, pure and simple.)
        • I deleted exactly two paragraphs of arguments that are in any sense pro-Rummel (although I wrote the majority of them), because I had duplicated their content. If you want a version with them, use [this one.
        • The only sense in which I changed POV was assembling arguments from their component parts.

Septentrionalis 22:11, 22 Jun 2005 (UTC)

You wrote: "The following criticisms apply to Rummel's extreme form of DPT; many, but not all, critics agree that there is a tendency for democratic states to avoid war with each other, and to refrain from inflicting serious damage on each other; but some critics apply the same sorts of argument to weaker forms of DPT as well." This is incorrect. Many critics use different and stronger arguments, thus you are incorrectly weakening the critique [10].

That argues incompleteness, not incorrectness. I have no objection to adding the sentence; although it appears to be rather silly. A stronger argument should affect both the tendency form of DPT and Rummel. Septentrionalis

You declare that there was a war between Finland and the UK, thus claiming to have disproved Rummel as a fact. Rummel do not recognize that conflict as a war in his analysis because few causalities. You seem to do so because a formal declaration of war. Does this means that the many large scale conflicts without a formal declaration were not wars, like many or most conflicts after WWII? Like the two conflicts between Iraq and the U.S.?

There was a state of war; but I have no problem changing the subtitle to British declaration of war on Finland. Septentrionalis

You moved "Supporters of the democratic peace theory disagree with the analysis of wars before the start of the Cold War, arguing that democracies did not make wars with each other before the arrival of the external threat of Communism, and claim that external causes similarly cannot explain the continued peace between democracies after the end of the Cold War." to Present democracies, totally out of place.

You're right, there should be a new == header there. Septentrionalis 02:04, 23 Jun 2005 (UTC)

You again added claims about statistics despite criticism from mathematicians here on Wikipedia [11]. Ultramarine 22:35, 22 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Ah, yes, the argument from authority. Since I believe it to be invalid, and unWiki, I will not present my own claims to authority. But do you actually argue that the statement you deleted: Using a set of data to determine the parameters of a theory, and then validating the theory by applying it to the same set of data, is a weak form of proof; the usual statistical tests presume the theory is independent of the data.

is false> On what grounds?

Rephrasing, say to "weaker form", is always an option.Septentrionalis 02:14, 23 Jun 2005 (UTC)

All of this I will answer later (if it's worth it) Septentrionalis 22:43, 22 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Latest exceptions

You would do better to try clicking on links when you create them. A few clicks would have told you that the Football war was a small war ("ended by the influence of the US and the OAS" as bloc peace theory would suggest); that CENTO was a failure; that Cyprus belonged to the Non-Aligned Movement, that the Dominican Republic was a new regime, which was falling apart (and one side in the civil trife was suspected of Communist sympathies. I was planning to mention it as an example of BPT, but refrained. Did I forget one? No matter, I'm sure you can come up. I will admit that making Rummellism look stupid is one way to counter POV, but not the one I would choose. Septentrionalis 22:43, 22 Jun 2005 (UTC)

All of these conflicts had more than 1000 casualties. The usual Rummel criteria about time limit or new regime do not apply, the bloc peace theory do not make any such claims. Cento was not a failure before the 1974. Cyprus had extensive ties to Greece and had British military bases. Ultramarine 22:48, 22 Jun 2005 (UTC)
You make a point of battlefield casualties when supporting Rummel. The majority of casualties in the Football war were Honduran civilians, leaving less (I suspect much less) than 1000 deaths in battle; if anyone wants to consider it a marginal case, stopped just too late by the alliance, go ahead. And do try just once reading both paragraphs statement of bloc theory. The Falkland war was a classic case of limited war, which bloc peace theory would predict. The United States would have stopped it if it had threatened to break up the alliance or injure either ally seriously. Likewise, the Turkish attack on Cuprus did not affect either British base. As for the Western Sahara, is it Mauretania or the Polisario Front that the brave defenders of Rummel suppose to be a Western state? (Again, before you answer Spain, read Western Sahara...) Septentrionalis 02:04, 23 Jun 2005 (UTC)
You think the United States would have stopped a more extensive war and you think that there were less than 1000 deaths in battle. In fact, the only source I have seen that differentiates between civilian and military deaths counts 2000 military deaths. Regarding, Western Sahara, over 70 nations recognize its independence. Ultramarine 02:43, 23 Jun 2005 (UTC)

The United States did stop the Football War, with the help of her allies. Read the article. If you disagree with it, argue the point there. Septentrionalis 17:40, 23 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Here is a real source for deaths [12]. Again, please use references that can be checked and not a webpage without references for its claims, like in your last edit of the page. Ultramarine 20:50, 23 Jun 2005 (UTC)

You're using the argument from the authority of an Erols web-page. I'm underwhelmed. I should add that two of the five values (which are deeply inconsistent) on the web-page you adopt are compatible with the web-page you scorn. Are you really going to claim that the Football War is a full-scale war? If so, do so; it will help make Rummelism look silly. Septentrionalis 22:04, 23 Jun 2005 (UTC)

My webpage has references which your do not. Please use such sources in the future. The only sources that differentiates between military and civilian deaths gives 2000 military deaths. Ultramarine 22:07, 23 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Eggbeater edits

The present form of the article is drastically incoherent. It has one pro-Rummel sentence, then one anti-Rummel sentence, then two pro-Rummel, and so on. This will not do. It is an invitation to confusion by anyone meeting the article the first time, and is completely unnecessary. 17:40, 23 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Obviously it is better to have similar material together. Otherwise one must jump back and forth in article in order to understand argument and counter argument. Ultramarine 21:26, 23 Jun 2005 (UTC)
The assertion that two things are similar can itself be POV; and Ultramarine has consistently misphrased snd distorted arguments on this basis. Reading Rummel's critics shows clearly that they are criticizing him on points which he ignores or dismisses. He may be right to do so, but that is for the reader to decide. This edit remains POV vandalism. Septentrionalis 21:50, 23 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Again, articles where one must jump back and forth in article every sentence should be avoided. Especially when it is impossible from the structure to know when one should jump and where. Ultramarine 22:08, 23 Jun 2005 (UTC)

No time limit or new regime limit in the bloc peace theory

You again try to classify away the Communist wars. The bloc peace theory does not have those limits. Please desist. Ultramarine 20:54, 23 Jun 2005 (UTC)

This is contrary to, among other things, Democratic peace theory. Read your own article. I find the assertion hypocritical in defense of Rummel, who classifies away the American civil war. It is also false. What this article nicknames bloc peace theory was the contemporary Western understanding of the Cold War. Septentrionalis 21:56, 23 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Ballots and Bullets: The Elusive Democratic Peace has no time limit. You seem to ad hoc to advocate limits similar to Rummel's in order to rescue the Communist states. Please, Wikipedia:No original research. Give an external source for that the bloc peace theory has time limits. Ultramarine 22:01, 23 Jun 2005 (UTC)
What, you only read one of Rummel's critics? I suppose we should be glad you read one.
not ad-hoc, but with mechanism.
All this over a trivial observation, which anybody considering the subject would make: that Dubcek was overthrown because Brezhnev didn't trust the new regime, and that in Afghanistan they found the new regime incompetent. But this makes me curious enough to read Gowa, and see if Ultramarine has read her with any more attention than the rest of his "data". In the meantime, this edit remains vandalism. Septentrionalis 22:13, 23 Jun 2005 (UTC)
You have not answered my objections, please do no again add original research ad hoc rules to the bloc peace theory. Ultramarine 22:16, 23 Jun 2005 (UTC)
No, I haven't read Gowa yet; I may not till Monday. In the meantime, do restore the arguments you have dismembered and eviserated. - and do find an "external source" that Morocco was at war with a Western state. Septentrionalis
What are you thinking about? I agree that Polisaro and its state cannot be considered to be a Western state, and removed it. Ultramarine 22:34, 23 Jun 2005 (UTC)
I have adjusted the criticism/defense version accordingly. Have you retracted any other examples? It's difficult to tell, given that your edit has arguments and supposed counterarguments stuck in hodge-podge. Septentrionalis 23:30, 23 Jun 2005 (UTC)


I've listed this page on RfC, in the hope that outside views (and a broader editing base) might resolve some of the problems. Mel Etitis (Μελ Ετητης) 22:18, 23 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Thank you, Mel. I stand substantially by my position in "Dispute" The version I now find clearest is here; its merit, such as it is, is that the criticisms are presented in full, and without having to adopt Rummel's framework of thought (and I have not seen a critic who has). I will set up Template:two versions, unless you have a better idea. Septentrionalis 23:09, 23 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Your version is probably incomprehensible for anyone reading is for the first time since you have spread related arguments and counter arguments all over the article. An article should be understandable, not a jigsaw puzzle. Your arguments are weak and obscuring the article to conceal this should be avoided. Restored readable form. Ultramarine 03:14, 24 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Analysis of a Garble

My last text discussed one objection to Rummellism thus:

Rummel's official criteria (he has others) leave very few stabilized democracies in the nineteenth century. Even the United States barely met Rummel's criteria, if it did. The United Kingdom did not qualify (even if we stretch a point) until after the Third Reform Bill - or rather 1888, three years after its implementation; France did not qualify until after the Presidency of General MacMahon. The 1911 Britannica says on Belgium: "Down to 1893 the electorate was exceedingly small. Property and other qualifications kept the voting power in the hands of a limited class. This may be judged from the fact that in the year named there were only 137,772 voters out of a population of 6 3/4 millions." It is true that Switzerland did not go to war with the United States, but does this mean anything?

(The actual number of stabilized democracies is about three: less early in the nineteenth century; more very late in the century).

I then proceeded to discuss a 'different statement of Rummel's about numbers of liberal democracies, using a different and more generous standard.

Ultramarine has garbled this paragraph. He has changed the first sentence, so that it doesn't mention Rummel's official criteria at all (2/3 enfranchisement, at least three years old, etc.). He has deleted the summary, and point, of the criticism. He has then inserted the other discussion in the middle, separating the mutilated thesis from its supporting data.

This is only one case, but it is characteristic of Ultramarine's treatment of arguments against Rummelism. (The other criticisms are some of them longer than one paragraph, but they have been similarly treated.)

I will attempt a version which brings criticisms and defenses closer together, but states both of them. The present text does not do this. Septentrionalis 13:28, 24 Jun 2005 (UTC)

New edit

Done. I have even included this paragraph, although I can only guess at what argument it is attempting to make.

Supporters of the democratic peace theory disagree with the analysis of wars before the start of the Cold War, arguing that even when there were conflicts, democracies did not make war with each other. They also argue that the world was divided into blocs by the imperialist powers. This was often strictly regulated as when England and Russia divided Persia into two spheres of influence. Numerous wars occurred in these blocs, both by the imperialist powers when they extended direct rule and also between minor states in these blocs. For example, an incomplete list of wars in India after England had become the dominant European power includes three Anglo-Maratha Wars, four Anglo-Mysore Wars, two Anglo-Sikh Wars, three Anglo-Afghan Wars, the Anglo-Nepalese War, the Anglo-Bhutanese War, and three Anglo-Burmese Wars. They also note numerous wars in Latin America, despite belonging to an U.S. dominated bloc after the Monroe doctrine and the threat and sometimes military action from the other imperialist powers, like the French military invasion of Mexico. Examples of large scale wars in Latin America in this period include the War of the Triple Alliance, the War of the Pacific, the War of the Peruvian-Bolivian Confederation, the Mexican-American War, and the Chaco War.

Ultramarine, do read this edit. Septentrionalis 14:12, 24 Jun 2005 (UTC)

You deleted the empirical evidence section. Gross censorship.
Note, I am for one week going to have little Internet access. I expect continuing attempts to hide the weak arguments by obscuring arguments and spreading arguments and counter arguments all over article during this time. But I will be back. :) Ultramarine 14:23, 24 Jun 2005 (UTC)
What Ultramarine is storming about is an accidental loss due to one right bracket }. See diff. Oops. I trust this does not mean he will revert without reading, again. <sigh>Septentrionalis 14:38, 24 Jun 2005 (UTC)

I've Read Gowa

Having contributed to this article some time ago, I decided to visit and to see what changes have been made. It seems one of the arguments that Ultramine is making in his attempt to discredit criticisms of the democratic peace theory is to reference wars amongst communist states in order to invalidate Gowa's thesis in particular.

The problem with this is that Gowa's thesis does not attempt to predict or explain the behavior of states in the communist bloc. It applies exclusively to the democratic states, and postulates a reason why they abstained from attacking one another. She is, after all, arguing against the "democratic peace theory" and not some imaginary "communist peace theory."

The fact that communist states engaged in conflict with one another does not detract from Gowa's overall thesis that democratic states avoided conflict with other democratic states in order to focus their firepower on the larger perceived threat of communism.

Regards, Corax 18:52, 24 Jun 2005 (UTC)


An anonymous editor saw "democracy as a stabilized liberal democracy with voting rights for at least 2/3 of all adult males," and added "(NOTE: this definition is circular)". I am taking the note to here because

  • I believe the circularity is only apparent. The clause expresses Rummel's definition of democracy in terms of the standard term liberal democracy, and incorporates that article by reference.
  • comments should be made here, or as an <!--inline comment-->. If you can actually rephrase the clause to remove the apparent circularity, that would be a Good Thing. Septentrionalis 28 June 2005 22:01 (UTC)

Which Structure? a discussion

There are two versions of this article in competition. The immediate difference between them is structural. They are substantially identical down to the Criticism section in each. After that:

  • one, the Criticism/Response version, of which this edit is an example, which discusses each class of criticism of Rummel's extreme DPT, and after each class, the response by Rummel's supporters.
  • the other, Interwoven version, like this recent edit which switches back and forth much more often, sometimes several times in the same paragraph.

(I have also made edits in which all the criticisms are grouped, and then all the responses; but this is not one of them.)

Personally, I agree with those who feel that the article is too long and unbalanced; but I don't think much can be done about that until this is resolved and we have a structure to start from.

Please comment.

I am calling this a discussion because I have no objection to some other structure; my chief interest here is to present the arguments fairly and comprehensibly. Septentrionalis 28 June 2005 23:31 (UTC)

General Structure questions

  • I find the interwoven edit remarkably choppy and hard to understand; and I have the advantage of knowing what it says, and frequently why it says it. It also ties the article closely to Rummel's POV, thus tending to suppress or obscure criticisms of the form: "Rummel ignores this question". Attempting to match criticism and response on every little point ignores the fact that the two sides may differ on whether their arguments address the same point. The Criticism/response form also will make it easier to adjust the balance of the article, should there ever be a consensus to do so. Septentrionalis 28 June 2005 23:31 (UTC)
I agree with this assessment. The interwoven form of organization in this particular context creates what seems to be an unnatural and disjointed discussion of the issues. A more fluid and workable organization would be simply discussing Rummel's positions, then broaching the responses of various parties to Rummel's positions, then perhaps introducing other criticisms or defenses of the theory from others. In its current form, the portions of the article in question could just as easily be mistaken as a portion of an article on Rummel. I hope it's not difficult to see why this is undesirable. Corax 29 June 2005 18:03 (UTC)

(please put examples down here:)

Examples and other special points

New version

I'm back and have rewritten much of the article. Numerous new studies, corrections etc. Restored to understandable form where arguments and counter arguments are together. Pmanderson, why are you still using a webpage without references as a source for the number of deaths? As I have stated before, please use scholarly sources. And again, please do not try to hide the weak arguments by creating a jigsaw article by spreading related arguments all over the article. Ultramarine 29 June 2005 10:03 (UTC)

It appears to be a reasonable site, with no axe to grind on the present question. Any reader who wants to go further can look up a history of modern Central America. If it's good enough for Football War, it's good enough here. Septentrionalis 29 June 2005 18:54 (UTC)
A scholarly source requires at the very least that one can check the claims. There is no way of examining the truth of the statements in your webpage, or even it is completely fabricated. Please use verifiable sources. Ultramarine 30 June 2005 09:26 (UTC)
I am going to give you the benefit of the doubt and assume you intend to have an honest discussion of the weaknesses of the Bloc theory in your rewrite. The problem is that it is filled with so many faults that I think the wisest place to begin is in discussing what the "Bloc Theory" (at least the one proposed by Gowa) actually states.
It states that democratic states abstained from attacking other democratic states out of a desire to defeat the perceived threat of the totalitarianism of the communist states. It does not in any way attempt to explain the behavior of the communist states. It does not in any way attempt to explain the behavior of non-democratic states that might, for a variety of unsavory reasons, ally itself with the Western bloc.
We must be very careful in considering what it is this article is really about. It's about a theory which attributes the international behavior of a nation-state to the way it conducts its domestic affairs. Critics believe that alternative elements are responsible for what appears to be a pattern of behavior. Whether one ascribes to the former or the latter position, one must remember that the objects of analysis here are the democratic states. The examination of their behavior and their institutions -- not the behavior or institutions of totalitarian or non-democratic regimes -- constitutes the democratic peace theory. Trying either to support or to discredit the DPT by mentioning the behavior of non-democratic states demonstrates, at best, misunderstanding. At worst, it denotes a concerted effort to deceive.
Why, then, does article currently proffer wars between Israel and Egypt as proof that the Bloc theory is invalid? Egypt was not democratic, so the bloc theory does not apply to 1967 War or the Yom Kippur War or any of the other wars cited. Corax 29 June 2005 18:11 (UTC)
Gowa may wisely not have made any claims about the non-democratic states but this is a weakness in the bloc peace theory, which many critics have noted. This greatly weakens the explanation that the Western nations were afraid of the Communist states, since there is no explanation of why this is not true of other blocs that were threatened by enemy blocs. However, this is just an intuitive critic of the reasons behind the bloc peace theory. More important are the statistical studies that contradict it. Ultramarine 30 June 2005 09:26 (UTC)
Perhaps your position on the "bloc peace theory" would be more credible if you actually stated it correctly before trying to debunk it. As I have repeated and you apparently fail to comprehend, the "bloc peace theory" does NOT predict or in any way involved the behavior of non-democratic states. It states that the U.S., Western Europe, and other democratic states in other parts of the world were concerned enough about the spread of communism -- even from a splintered Communist bloc -- that they refrained from attacking one another. As far as your "statistical studies," feel free to introduce them into the text and explain how they discredit the actual theory and not your strange reinterpretation of it. Corax 30 June 2005 15:10 (UTC)
Yes, Gowa does not make any claims about non-democratic states but this can and have been severly criticzed. You have strange idea of theories and evidence if you think that one cannot criticze the predictions of a theory on other sets of data than those the proponents provide. Since other blocs that have been threatened by enemy blocs have had internal bloc wars, threat is proven false as the sole explanation for peace. Regarding the statistical studies, several of these are named in the text and I will add more recent ones in the future. If you want to criticze them, write an article and publish in a journal. Ultramarine 30 June 2005 16:26 (UTC)
It's not just Gowa. Show me one reference to a legitimate source that explains the "bloc peace theory" as you do, and I will accept it as an alternative version.
I am perfectly okay with people criticizing predictions of a theory based on data -- as long as the data is relevant to the predictions of the theory. As we have already seen, the behavior of the non-democratic states is not! Please read the explanation I gave above regarding what this discussion is about. It's about whether the domestic political quality of a state is responsible for the state's international behavior, or whether some other variable -- like the structure of the international political system -- is responsible for the democratic state's international behavior.
There is no logic to what you are arguing because you are basing criticisms on a theory describing possible causes for the behavior of democratic states by discussing the behavior of non-democratic states, which we have already conceded are qualitatively different in their decision-making. It doesn't make sense that because communist states didn't bind together in solidarity to oppose Western democracies, we would expect similar lack of cohesiveness among the democracies. So you either must concede that democratic states' motiviations in foreign policy decisions are largely the same as those of non-democratic states (which, coincidentally, severely hinders the DPT), or you must dispense with this silly argument that belligenerece amongst the commies disproves the "bloc peace theory."
Assuming you are as old as I think you are, you should be aware that during the Cold War -- when most "democracies" came into existence -- the fear was that the Communist ideology would spread and infect other states, not that China, the USSR, Vietnam, and other Communist states would all band together nuke the USA and France. The fact that USSR eventually fell out of favor with China does not signal to the democratic states that they no longer needed to continue to cooperate with one another to roll-back and contain communism. In other words, they didn't disband NATO the second they saw two communist countries at war with one another. The second you come to accept this, your argument collapses. As it should. Corax 30 June 2005 17:57 (UTC)
Here is one peer-reviewed article that criticze the bloc peace theory by using the wars in Soviet bloc. [13] Ultramarine 2 July 2005 06:16 (UTC)
I will attempt to explain Ultramarine's argument, although I believe it to quite weak. (In this case, Ultramarine's choice of structure is interfering with comprehension of his own arguments.)
  • If the bloc peace theory is to be true, there must be no wars within the Western bloc.
    • Israel and Egypt were within the Western bloc. (Personally, I would hold the first probably, but not certainly, true, the second false; but it's not my argument.)
  • Ultramarine takes it as axiomatic that if there was a Western bloc peace, there must also have been a Soviet bloc peace. He has deleted my comments on why this need not follow. (See this version.) Therefore any war within the Soviet bloc disproves bloc peace theory, even Gowa's version.
You probably mean this "The "bloc peace theory" may suggest that there should have been a similar peace within the Soviet bloc. There are also reasons not to expect this: The common interest reflected in the alliance was an interest only of the ruling Parties, not of the nations; and the Soviet bloc was in general a more rickety structure, less able to get its members to cooperate. It has ceased to exist; and when it did exist, Yugoslavia and China peacefully seceeded from it, and became actively hostile."
The other states who had military and economic pacts the Soviet Union were mere puppet states, who were military invaded if they threatened to leave the bloc. There certainly was no rickety structure among these. China and Yugoslavia liberated themselves from foreign occupation and were never coerced into such strong relationships. That the ruling parties and not the nations as a whole directed policy means that that there were less democracy. Ultramarine 30 June 2005 10:12 (UTC)
Is Rummelism really so weak a theory that it needs Maoist history to defend itself? Neither Chinese government liberated China; they maintained liberated zones, with considerable outside support. A creditable a differs in degree, not in kind, from the Eastern European (or for that matter, the French) Resistance. It was also a strategic choice: the Chinese Communists were not saving themselves to cooperate with a rescue by their Allies, since they did not expect such rescue. Septentrionalis
The Titoist account of the liberation of Yugoslavia is similarly exaggerated, although closer to the facts on the ground. Belgrade was liberated after the Red Army entered Yogslavia, although they deferred to the Partisans; as the Anglo-Americans let the French liberate Paris. Tito also had massive outside support, although from the British rather than the Soviets. The Czech and Bulgarian Resistance, for example, had no such aid, nor could they have had. Septentrionalis 8 July 2005 22:25 (UTC)
China and Yugoslavia were never members of the Warsaw Pact or Comecon. The members were satellite states, strictly controlled by the Soviet Union. It is simply ridiculous to claim that "the Soviet bloc was in general a more rickety structure, less able to get its members to cooperate" Ultramarine 9 July 2005 12:45 (UTC)

That's his argument. Let Ultramarine defend it. Septentrionalis 29 June 2005 18:54 (UTC)

Such an argument ignores the fact that the "Bloc" theory gets its name from the fact that almost all the countries in the so-called Western-bloc were democratic. It is only as far as the Western bloc was democratic that the Democratic Peace Theory is pertinent. Corax 29 June 2005 19:13 (UTC)
Again, see above. Ultramarine 30 June 2005 09:26 (UTC)

Template removal

Will remove templates unless someone presents arguments for keeping them. Ultramarine 6 July 2005 12:02 (UTC)

  • The neutrality of Ultramarine's edit has been at least questioned by every other commentator on this Talk page.
  • The accuracy has improved since the tag was put on, but is still open to question. The suggestio falsi discussed above (under Analysis of a garble) continues, however.
  • The two versions are still under discussion, the vote being now 2-1 against the present version. They have been reversed, but this version can also be fixed.
I shall see about amending the page as soon as I finish catching up with more important matters after my vacation. Wikilove to all. Septentrionalis 7 July 2005 19:18 (UTC)
Please give concrete examples, in particular regarding accuracy which is a much stronger statement than NPOV. Ultramarine 7 July 2005 19:21 (UTC)
Much of the NPOV tag represents suppressio veri, which is as vicious as any other form of lying. Septentrionalis 8 July 2005 22:27 (UTC)

I have added some {{dubious}) notes, the contentions for which can be found inline (They should be brought here to be answered, but I see no reason to make their statement disjointed.) Septentrionalis

Beyond that, all fair or comprehensible statement of the views of Rummel's critics has been deleted. This is, quite simply, fraud. Septentrionalis 8 July 2005 23:24 (UTC)

You have added several dubious tags without backing them up with any concrete examples, I will remove them unless you use arguments instead of insinuations. Ultramarine 9 July 2005 12:59 (UTC)
I believe all dubious tags have been justified either on this talk-page or in-line. More may be warranted; the contorted style of this edit makes it very difficult to read; but I'll get back to this piece, when I have nothing better to do - perhaps tomorrow. Septentrionalis 9 July 2005 19:19 (UTC)

A Pox on both your versions!

I have read both versions, and I find that neither meets what I think is the basic test of a good Wikipedia article about a controversy: that it provide a reader, sufficiently educated to care about the subject, but a non-specialist with no dog in the fight, with enough information to understand the controversy, and with a good bibliography pointing to both web and print sources.

Problems I see include, but are not limited to:

  • The article is too long and too detailed. MEGO.
  • Instances of jargon that may jolt non-specialists. Why "dyad" where "pair" will do nicely? For example, "There are 6,876 possible pairings of states." Why explain that you are using the binomial theorem? To anyone for whom that fact is not trivially obvious, much more explanation is needed than the text can abide.
  • Both editors stray into POV, generally at different places. This may be unavoidable after so long a dispute but it doesn't help anyone who actually wants to learn something.
  • Ultramarine does not represent critics' positions well, and often seems to misunderstand the point, as others have observed.
  • I don't know if Mr. Anderson intends to take cheap shots, but it looks that way at times.
  • While Mr. Anderson either recalls or can reinvent the obvious criticisms, he hasn't taken the time to get the best quality citations.
  • If Ultramarine were properly circumspect about his own POV he could take the opportunity to help Mr. Anderson out. That would IMO be in the proper Wikipedia spirit.

If I had world enough and time, I would offer to edit this into an NPOV article of about five pages. I know that WINP, but eleven to thirteen pages?!? Way too much! Perhaps there would be less POV if there were less detailed argument in the text, and more footnotes to scholarly articles making the actual arguments. A general-interest reader doesn't need a lot of the specifics, and for a student writing a research paper, the important thing is to understand that both Rummel and the critics deserve to be taken seriously. Then, go and do some actual homework.

If this dispute is still going on in a month, I may have time to help.

One final note. One reason to be open to criticism is that this theory fits perfectly into American ideology. One should be very suspicious of research that fits into one's mindset too well. In fact, Rummel alludes to this, and then seems to ignore the point. Robert A West 03:55, 10 July 2005 (UTC)

In fact, among researchers there is not much less disagreement regarding the DPT. The critique here is very disproportionate to what there is in the literature. Many of the the so called critics here are ignorant and have note even bothered to read a basic introduction to the literature, like this one that is mentioned in the article [14]. But since the critics here do not bother or do not want to read it, much must be repeated in the article which makes it very long. This theory if of course extremely unpopular among critics of democracy on both the left and right, but this does not mean that what is in the scholarly literature should be censored in favor of the newspaper articles and blog like websites initially quoted by PmAnderson as evidence. Ultramarine 15:14, 10 July 2005 (UTC)
A most implausible claim. Certainly Gowa has no trouble finding papers published in scholarly journals which deny every aspect of DPT, including those for wqhich Ultramarine has found supporting papers. Or is this another invention, like his recent invention on the Prussian franchise? If Ultramarine has in fact not read it, I'm sure Gowa is available by Interlibrary Loan. Septentrionalis
I agree with much of Robert A West's criticism, including that of my own edits. Much more needs to be done than to decide on a version. There would appear to be the following agenda:


The present text of the article is an unreadable polemic for one extreme form of DPT. This is not suitable for Wikipedia. I will make an attempt to correct it again, but not tonight.

  • remove the intewrwoven structure, which only Ultramarine finds reasonsble.
  • present a fair and comprehensible statement of the arguments on both sides.
  • eliminate the polemical tone altogether.
  • curtail the extraordinary emphasis on Rummelism. If this article is to have a central figure, Michael Doyle would be better.
  • expand other sections for balance.

It seemed logical to me to do these in the order above, but we can begin with a statement of the criticisms. Any edit of this morass must, perforce, be a work in progress. The version Mr. West critiqued attempted to do only the first two steps above. Septentrionalis 23:42, 15 July 2005 (UTC)


The accuracy, neutrality, and readability of the present edit are disputed. Ultramarine thinks them unimpeachable. No one else does. Septentrionalis 15:57, 18 July 2005 (UTC)


Your arguments get stranger and stranger. Are you disputing that Kant's theory was a forerunner to the DPT? Or why else did put up some new strange "disputed" tags? Ultramarine 22:49, 18 July 2005 (UTC)
I summarized what Kant actually said. Conclusions are, as is proper on Wikipedia, left to the reader. It is not the purpose of this article to convince the reader of any Truth, but to show him what DPT is, and what has been said about it. Did you think this was a chat room? Septentrionalis 02
40, 19 July 2005 (UTC)

Perhaps what democratic peace theories are would be more accurate. Septentrionalis

Actually, Kant was not even mentioned by the earliest creators of the modern form of the DPT. Ultramarine 05:03, 19 July 2005 (UTC)

Removing an accuracy dispute tag while engaging in a factual dispute, as in this edit, is a violation of Wikiquette, as well as common sense. Please do not do this again. Septentrionalis

As for the substance of the question, please explain what you are disputing. The sentence you altered says nothing about earliest creators. Even if it did, Michael Doyle was according to Rummel's bibliography, the first to publish on the subject after Rummel's first independent press publications. Sounds like a early creator to me. Septentrionalis 15:25, 19 July 2005 (UTC)

Or is Ultramarine suggesting that Rummel does not now claim intellectual descent from Kant - to emplopy the present wording? Septentrionalis

Two-version template

The two-version template now refers to two versions by the same user. I request that Septentrionalis pick one of his verions and and link to my latest version with the two-version template. Otherwise I will correct it. Ultramarine 00:46, 25 July 2005 (UTC)

Your request seems reasonable to me. Given that there are not separate histories for the two versions, and that the template does not automatically adjust when the "secondary" version is edited, it gets really hard to figure out what happened, especially as both of you have edited since the bifurcation. May I propose a way out of this mess?
    1. Each of you nominates a version that you feel most fairly represents your idea of how the article should be, with due consideration for valid edits by the other.
    2. Each of you find some unlikely-to-change way to tag "your" version so that we can identify which version a third party has edited, God help us all.
    3. At any given moment, the "primary" version is the one most recently edited, and the "secondary" is the one less recently edited, regardless of "whose" version it is.
    4. If a third party edits the primary version, the owner of the secondary version will decide whether and how to incorporate the edit.
    5. If a third party edits the secondary version, this will create a confusion of version, since the current version comes from the secondary version, but the two-version template still points to the secondary. Whichever one of us notices will swap the template around and so mark the edit. We all agree that is a minor edit. We all agree to do nothing else in that edit, not so much as a comma or spelling correction.
    6. Minor edits aside, I will agree to edit neither version without previous discussion and agreement from the "owner". Although not strictly a party to either version, I am capable of inflaming this dispute further if I am not careful.
    7. Neither of you touches the other's version without previous discussion and agreement. I am not sure if you trust each other enough to allow even minor edits just yet, so I counsel restraint. The template updating mentioned above is, obviously, an exception.
    8. Each of you agree not to unreasonably refuse a request to edit your version.
    9. When either of you edits the secondary version, you will take responsibility for modifying the two-version template to make the primary version the secondary. The revised secondary version is now the most recent version, and therefore primary.
Are we agreed? Robert A West 07:26, 25 July 2005 (UTC)

I have reservations about this proposal.
  • I inserted the two-versions tag to mark the structural difference, above, which is still unresolved; the opinions being 2-1-1. Since it does not appear likely to be resolved soon, and I have other changes to offer, I am prepared to edit the version with the other structure as an interim measure, and am doing so slowly so that the changes may be discussed, as the Kant paragraph was (although incompletely).
    • Edits having the same structure are comparable by diffs. Edits with differing structures are not; whose edits they are is secondary.
  • I think the edits should come together in some manner; two-versions is a stop-gap, not a recipe for alternate dominance like Castor and Pollux, or as a means of "ownership". "Ownership" is a claim of immunity to being edited boldly.
  • Both of us have added things since the bifurcation. Some of Ultramarine's additions are valuable, and I would like to keep them; I kept them all until recently by finding them and adding them to the other structure, but his structure is so bewildering that I was taking more time doing that than editing on my own. If I leave one of them out even by accident, I expect cries of censorship (again). Septentrionalis 15:35, 25 July 2005 (UTC)
    • So, how do you propose to come to an agreement over which version to use if only one of the versions is visible? Or, how do you propose to keep both versions visible if you don't do *something* like what I propose? I'm not following what you believe you are doing and how you believe it contributes to a collegial resolution of this mess. Please explain what the difference now is between version U and version S and how you intend to maintain that distinction. Robert A West 19:02, 25 July 2005 (UTC)
      • The essential difference, as I see it, is that while version U and version S contain many of the same points, they are in different orders. U is interwoven (above); S is criticism/response. Since nobody except the two of us seems to care about that difference, I am prepared to postpone it, and try to fix other points in version U which seem to need work. Most of the changes I have made recently have been to the portion of the article the two versions have in common.
      • The structural difference is now marked as follows: Version U and version S have almost entirely distinct sets of section-headers, except at the very beginning and very end of the article (U also has several section headers ending in question-marks, S doesn't). We could have comment tags in the intro saying <!--Version S; please do not remove this tag-->, I suppose.
      • When the structural question is resolved (and that is possible; Robert A West would resolve it if he joined the majority finding Version U worse) either:
        • It will be in favor of version U. The two-version tag can be removed.
        • Or it will be in favor of version S. Version U, in whatever shape it then is, can be refashioned, so that the responses to each criticism are after a statement of the criticism, and the tag can still be removed.
      • A two-version tag should not be needed during normal editing, if both sides are civil. Since the difference between U and S is structural, I don't see how it can be resolved by merging one version into the other, as we are attempting at Talk:Criticisms of communism. But I am open to suggestions.Septentrionalis 20:17, 25 July 2005 (UTC)

I am at the moment explaining how I have edited for the past couple weeks, and why I do not immediately accept the present proposal, which I hope is clearer than a point-by-point commentary. A full counterproposal of my own, or a point-by-point commentary on Mr. West's proposal would both take longer. Which would be more helpful? Septentrionalis 20:41, 25 July 2005 (UTC)

I think I would be content with the much simpler system:

  1. Anyone can edit the article, and be bold.
  2. Deletions of a paragraph or more must be announced here before actual deletion.
  3. Rearrangements of more than a paragraph must be explained here, so that everybody can see where passages have gone when diffs are impractical
    1. Both the above to apply also to multiple successive edits.
  4. No massive reversions without prior notice on this talk page.
  5. The two-versions to be restored to mark the latest edit in each structure, until it is outmoded by a resolution of the question, or the development of the page. Septentrionalis 23:21, 25 July 2005 (UTC)

Comments? Septentrionalis 23:21, 25 July 2005 (UTC)

If we can get the above to work, fine. I withdraw my suggestion. Robert A West 21:10, 26 July 2005 (UTC)

Just table it (in the American sense). My esteemed colleague hasn't yet agreed to either plan, after all. Septentrionalis 02:19, 27 July 2005 (UTC)

The facts

Kant't theory

Your version states that "Modern students of Democratic Peace Theory have, citing each other, claimed descent from Kant's 1795 essay Project of a Perpetual Peace.". This is incorrect, the first creators did not mention Kant. Nor has anyone claimed that the modern DPT is the same as Kant's theory. Indeed, they have noted the differences, as stated in my text. Please correct. Ultramarine 14:49, 26 July 2005 (UTC)

  • This is disingenuous. What Ultramarine's text had about Kant was It was Immanuel Kant who first foreshadowed the theory of a peace between liberal democracies// Famous philosopher Immanuel Kant first posited an early theory of democratic peace in the late 18th century// Kant's theory was revived by Dean Babst; and a mention of Kant as proposing one of several mechanisms for the democratic peace. It is only in the last context that difference is even suggested, and it is a divergence between various DPTs. (He also adorned the article with Kant's portrait.)
  • "All modern students" is neither stated or implied by the present text. Without it there is no inaccuracy.
  • Rummel may not have heard of Kant when he first wrote; but he describes Kant as "foundational" now. That leaves Babst as denying Kant's rôle; I will check on this, but it seems really unimportant.
Where's the error?
But I will be drawing together the references to Michael Doyle, including his initial (and acccurate) summary of Kant, as a single historical paragraph, which may assuage this pang. Septentrionalis 18:29, 26 July 2005 (UTC)
It is a false statement that I introduced the portrait of Kant or even Kant at all in this article. It existed before me. Ultramarine 19:51, 27 July 2005 (UTC)
I note the retraction of the phrase as stated in my text above. On the whole, I see no reason to retain a dubious tag for so evanescent an inaccuracy. Unless an actual statement is produced, and claimed to be inaccurate, it should be removed. Septentrionalis 19:52, 2 August 2005 (UTC)
Again, your version states that "Modern students of Democratic Peace Theory have, citing each other, claimed descent from Kant's 1795 essay Project of a Perpetual Peace.". This is incorrect, the first creators did not mention Kant and those who later did also noted the differences. Correct. Ultramarine 14:04, 3 August 2005 (UTC)

Incorrect description of paper

Your version states "This website argues for the strong version of the theory". This is incorrect, [15] is a review paper of the studies done on the DPT, both supporting and critical. Please correct. Ultramarine 14:49, 26 July 2005 (UTC)

*So it seems; that should teach me not to draw a conclusion from the text without checking it. I will redescribe when I get to that section. I also note that the review paper makes several of the criticisms which Ultramarine has deleted as unsupported by scholarship. Septentrionalis

Having now read the article at some length, I would describe it as a skillful summing-up in the interest of DPT, including mention of the criticisms, partly to throw overboard the weaker DPTs, partly to present refutations. It argues very strongly that DPT is better founded than the alternatives. If this is Ultramarine's basis for estimating the state of the field, I am no longer surprised by his statements above. Septentrionalis 18:04, 27 July 2005 (UTC)
The amazing thing is that you admit not having read it, because I have repeatedly pointed it out. One would think that a serious critic would be familiar with this basic material. Ultramarine 19:48, 27 July 2005 (UTC)
Touché! I did, however, read it weeks ago (and edited accordingly), but the memory blurred with the rest of the apologias for Rummellism with which the page is littered. Septentrionalis 14:34, 29 July 2005 (UTC)
Now you have moved this scholarly summary of studies to external links while keeping your Wall Street Journal opinion article and this personal webpage [16] as evidence in the main text. Please correct. Ultramarine 14:09, 3 August 2005 (UTC)

Incorrect description of newspaper opinion article

Your text states "The third type of criticism has been expressed thus in a Hoover Institution article" This is misleading, [17] is only a reprint of a Wall Street Journal opinion article. Please correct. Ultramarine 14:49, 26 July 2005 (UTC)

I will accept republished by if the dates can be established. Septentrionalis 18:34, 26 July 2005 (UTC)
Read the link. Ultramarine 19:43, 27 July 2005 (UTC)
You have still not corrected the statement. Please do. Ultramarine 03:09, 2 August 2005 (UTC)

Demographics of Athens

It is estimated that only 16% of the population in Athens had the right to vote.

The 16% here is the ratio between number of Athenian citizens and the total (adult male) population of Attica. Since we know neither of these, stating the ratio between them to two significant digits is irresponsible.

It's actually worse than that. The number of Athenians can be guessed, from such data as the 6000 votes required for ostracism, the 24,000 troops mustered at the beginning of the Peloponnesian War usw. The total population of Attica can only be estimated by guessing the ratio of men to women, adults to children, citizens to metics, and free to slave; doing the indicated multiplication; and then arguing the result is not inconsistent with the archaeolgical evidence. The first two factors can be estimated from other demoraphic evidence; the last two can only be guessed. Therefore 16% represents the product of two modern guesses. Septentrionalis 18:39, 27 July 2005 (UTC)

The point being that only a very small minority had the right to vote. Feel free to add that the numbers are uncertain. Ultramarine 19:54, 27 July 2005 (UTC)
Those who think thata sixth or a quarter enfranchisement is very small should consider the Belgian franchise of 1892 again, which gave the vote to 5% of the men - and Belgium was, rightly, considered a parliamentary and responsible government. Septentrionalis 22:59, 29 July 2005 (UTC)


The methodologies section has been moved up and recast into a section of definitions. We should explain what a democratic peace is, before we speculate on causes. Septentrionalis 22:59, 29 July 2005 (UTC)


The following argument is fallacious:

[Rummel] argues that this is strongly statistically significant. For example, during the 1946-1986 period there were 45 states that had a democratic regime; 109 that did not. There were thus 6,876 state dyads (e.g., Bolivia-Chile), of which 990 were democratic-democratic dyads. None of the 990 fought each other. Using the binomial theorem, the probability of the 990 dyads not engaging in war is .9953 to the 990th power or .0099, which rounded off, equals .01. The probability of this lack of war between democracies being by chance is virtually 100 to 1.

This calculation makes no allowance for loss of democracy during the Cold War; which decreases the expected number of wars significantly. Since the distribution involved is effectively Poisson, the probability of sero wars is exponential in this expectation. Therefore the .0099 is a serious underestimate.


=Specific exclusion defended

I give notice that I intend to delete the following paragraph (With it gone, I would be willing to join a consensus that the general disputed tag is unnecessary):

Proponents have responded similarly to other objections. During the War of 1812, only a small minority had the right to vote in the United Kingdom, many new urban areas had no representation, the ballot was not secret, many seats in Parliament were appointed or openly bought from the owners of rotten boroughs, and the House of Lords could veto all laws. The defenders of DPT exclude the American Civil War because, in addition to it being an internal conflict, in the Confederate States of America, only 30-40% of male population could vote and there was never a competitive presidential election. Similarly, only a minority had the right to vote in the Boer states. Nawaz Sharif, the president of Pakistan at the time of the Kargil War, used terror tactics to silence critical press and the previously independent judiciary, for example storming the Supreme Court in order to force the Chief Justice out of office. Yassir Arafat, the president of the Palestinian Authority at the start of the latest conflicts with Israel, can be criticized on similar grounds. There was never a democratic election in the Philippines before the Philippine-American war. All the Mexican presidents at the time of the conflicts with the U.S., like Mariano Paredes y Arrillaga, took their power in coup d'etats. [dubious ] The nations in the War of the Pacific were ruled by Caudillos or had suffrage requirements like literacy or property that excluded a large part of the populations.

chiefly because it is a defense of Rummel's DPT (only) against criticisms which are no longer in the article. It is therefore both quite PoV and not particularly useful tp the mere reader; it is also a dubious collection of statements. If it returns to the text it should at least acknowledge that Ted Gurr counted Spain in 1898, and Greece in 1912 as democracies. Septentrionalis 18:39, 27 July 2005 (UTC)

I oppose, since many of the examples are mentioned by critics, including in the Wall Street Journal opinion article that you link as evidence. Therefore it is certainly useful to the "mere reader" and it would violate NPOV to delete it. Ultramarine 19:59, 27 July 2005 (UTC)
This is a misunderstanding of the purpose of the article (or of any WP article), which is not to defend DPTs, much less one particular DPT, but explain what they are. For special criticisms, and defenses, the reader can go to the external links; that's what they're for. Do you have a valid objection to the removal of the paragraph and the general Disputed tag? Septentrionalis 14:13, 29 July 2005 (UTC)
Please do not invent Wikipedia policy. The articles should be npov and they usually present arguments for and against in the article. There is certainly no policy that the arguments should only be in external links. Your deletion violates npov. Ultramarine 03:12, 2 August 2005 (UTC)
NPOV does not mean presenting every argument pro and con, much less presenting responses to arguments not in the article: either one is a disservice to the reader. Part of editorial judgment is knowing how much detail is useful. If you want to get into detailed arguments about whether (for example) Egypt was a member or one or another block, take it to Wikibooks, where there is room enough to explore the issue in depth. Robert A West 17:20, 2 August 2005 (UTC)
What part of Articles without bias describe debates fairly rather than advocating any side of the debate does Ultramarine hold not to be policy? Septentrionalis 18:02, 2 August 2005 (UTC)
"The policy of having a neutral point of view is not to hide different points of view, but to show the diversity of viewpoints. In case of controversy, the strong points and weak points will be shown according to each point of view, without taking a side." Some of the critics of the DPT argue that the mentioned nations are exceptions, like in the Wall Street Journal opinion article. Thus, Wikipedia should mention these arguments and also the counter-arguments. Ultramarine 13:30, 3 August 2005 (UTC)

Rambling paragraph

This paragraph has no topic sentence. Appears not to use a coherent definition of bloc.

Supporters of the democratic peace theory disagree with the analysis of wars before the start of the Cold War, arguing that even when there were conflicts, democracies did not make war with each other. They also argue that there were wars within blocs. In the nineteenth century, much of the world was divided into blocs by the imperialist powers. This was often strictly regulated as when England and Russia divided Persia into two spheres of influence. Numerous wars occurred in these blocs, both by the imperialist powers when they extended direct rule and also between minor states in these blocs. For example, an incomplete list of wars in India after England had become the dominant European power includes three Anglo-Maratha Wars, four Anglo-Mysore Wars, two Anglo-Sikh Wars, three Anglo-Afghan Wars, the Anglo-Nepalese War, the Anglo-Bhutanese War, and three Anglo-Burmese Wars.

Do you really suppose that these are Britain making war on her allies? These are wars coercing them to become her allies.

They also note numerous wars in Latin America, despite belonging to an U.S. dominated bloc after the Monroe doctrine. This bloc was frequently threatened by the other imperialist blocs and sometimes direct military action occurred, like the French military invasion of Mexico. Examples of large scale wars in Latin America in this period include the War of the Triple Alliance, the War of the Pacific, the War of the Peruvian-Bolivian Confederation, the Mexican-American War, and the Chaco War.

The Monroe doctrine is a unilateral determination, not an alliance. Therefore it does not represent a community of interest; for the Latin American states didn't agree.

They also note several betrayals of formal treaties within blocs during WWII. Examples include the wars of Finland, Italy, Bulgaria, Roumania, and Hungary on their German ally in WWII and the German invasion of the Soviet Union despite the Molotov-Ribbentrop Nonaggression Pact and its secret extensions.
Of course nations that make war against each other are not allies. But the above statements show that the existence of blocs and external threats does not prevent wars, as the bloc peace theory claims. Ultramarine 03:16, 2 August 2005 (UTC)
The bloc peace theory claims only that the members of a particular bloc did not make war against each other, since the bloc exists because of, and in order to implement, a common interest. "BPT" (which, remember, is a nickname, invented in this article) says nothing about wars outside the bloc; which may even have been more likely because the bloc existed. Septentrionalis 17:23, 2 August 2005 (UTC)
The BPT has been criticized using wars in other blocs. Ultramarine 13:33, 3 August 2005 (UTC)

More assorted specific arguments

There were wars in the Western bloc between democracies and dictatorships, supporters argue, thus disproving the bloc peace theory. One example is the Turkish invasion of Cyprus in 1974, at a time when Cyprus had British military bases and close ties to Turkey's NATO partner Greece. Another is the Football War. However, bloc peace supporters note that the U.S. put pressure on the combatants to stop the Football War which fits the bloc peace theory. A third is the 1965 U.S. invasion of the Dominican Republic. They might argue that the 1967 Six Day War and the 1973 Yom Kippur War were wars within the Western bloc, because Iraq belonged to CENTO and Israel received extensive aid from the U.S. Bloc peace theory supporters claim that CENTO was not a functioning organization and note that The Soviet-Iraqi Treaty of Friendship was signed in 1972. Critics of the bloc peace theory also note the two Gulf Wars, in which Arabic nations fought each other despite belonging to the Arab League and OPEC. All of these wars had more than 1000 military casualties [18]. The Falklands War almost qualify (936 causalities).

Time limit

This entire section is only a defense of Rummelism as opposed to a discussion of DPT in general; and in part an unsound one. Septentrionalis 23:31, 5 August 2005 (UTC)

Rummel's requirement that the democratic states must be older than three years excludes the war between the French Second Republic and the Roman Republic (19th century). The First Balkan War is excluded if one considers the Ottoman Empire to have become democratic after the first election in November 1908 or when the constitution was amended so that the parliament could control the cabinet in April 1909. The war started in October 1912, which would be before four years had passed. Critics instead argue that democracy occurred in July 1908 when a constitution was introduced. It is also doubtful if the opposing Christian states fulfill the democratic criteria since the Kings continued to have extensive powers in all of them. {dubious} Gurr counts pre-WW I Greece as having obtained the highest level of democracy; one of only four states to do so.
Rummel's criteria, like the time limit and democratic institutions and elections on both sides, also exclude civil wars within democracies over legitimacy or secession, such as the American Civil War, the Sonderbund war, the Anglo-Irish War and the Irish civil war which followed, and the 20th century civil wars in Colombia, Spain, Uruguay and Sri Lanka.

This is a section for the special purpose of proposing and discussing deletions and rearrangements. Please keep that discussion above this line, and do not insert other matter above this line [Moved to prepare for possible strawpoll 14:13, 29 July 2005 (UTC)]