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'Mihai Paun with Laura Dorneanu' (afirmatori) vs 'Carmel and Yazan' (negatori)

A1 (Laura Dorneanu)

Democracy’s provenience, purpose and effectiveness in protecting human rights and making businesses flourish have made many believe it is the answer to the world’s most important problems. For those reasons we explain in the following what are the advantages of democracy and how important problems can be solved, but most importantly why it is the moral duty of democratic countries to act.

Legitimate is right

Democracy is the only form of legitimacy invented until today. Presently there are two ways of rulling: democratic ways and un-democratic  ones[1].

Firstly, democracy , as its name  states, means “power of the people” (from the Greek “demos” meaning people and “kratos” - power).  It is based on the following simple construction: people have power and they decide to whom to transmit that power through free elections. The representatives then exercise the power in the name of the people. They are simple “administrators” for the people. If they do not fulfill their obligations there are democratic means to end their rule[2].

On the other hand, un-democratic regimes explain their power using theocratic theories meaning the power is of divine nature, it does not come from people and the rulers are not bound to represent the interests of the ruled.

Militating for a system that defends and uses as a basis people is thus a duty of those who are able and have the resources for this - modern countries. By situating people in the centre of a system we make the system work for the people, not the people to work for the system. Countries must support only legitimate and democratic regimes.

Democracy is the #1 conflict manager

Managing conflicts is considered to be the hardest part in a society.

Firstly, many countries are constantly faced with conflictual issues. Unmanaged conflicts are a threat to the survival of that society and that is why democracy offers the most efficient mechanisms of solving those conflicts as it has more conflict management than un-democratic regimes, which are characterized by wars, violence and clashes.

 According the UN Charter, states must settle their international disputes by peaceful means in such a manner that international peace, security and justice are not endangered. [6]

These regulatory means are statuated in the UN Charter and are negotiation, enquiry, mediation,  conciliation, arbitration, judicial settlement, resort to regional agencies or arrangements, or other peaceful means. The declaration that was adopted by the UN General Assembly on the Rule of Law at in September 2012 establishes very clearly that states are obliged to solve their disagreements through peaceful means, which is a general obligation for all states and offers important guarantees.


In the name of human rights

Human rights can only be efectively protected through democracy as democracy acts in the name of and for the people while un-democratic regimes are of devine nature and thus are not bound to perform in the name of and for the people[3].

Firstly, the protection of human rights is provided by international law meaning that it is above any internal law stating otherwise and all countries are obliged to respect human rights. Spreading democracy will be done in a democractic way, meaning peacefully and only exceptionally using force. According to the UN Charter, disputes must be settled peacefully. Force can only be used in exceptional cases and only after the UN Security Council democratically voted for the use of force[6].

Lastly, the value which we are defending through democracy is human rights. All countries have taken the obligation to protect human rights no matter what. This can be done through peaceful means meaning treaties, mediation, conciliation, arbitrary decisions, international offices etc. and exceptionally if needed based on the decision of the Security Council through economic sanctions and using force[6].

For these reasons, democracy is the only reliable system when protecting human rights and it is the obligation of all to intervene when not respected.

Democracy is good for business

Presently democracy is the best system ever invented from a bussines point of view. Democracy means economic growth and stability, which in turn create the optimum conditions for consumption and investment and create again economic growth[4].

Wars, riots, violences and clashes create unstability and other dificult economic conditions and in turn hurt consumption and investment, thus the economy itself. There is a clear link between democracy and economic growth[5]. Spreading the democratic principles leads to the existence of economic development, meaning when a country is governed by democracy, the outcome is more economic growth.

In conclusion, democracy is the only legitimate form of ruling and thus it is the only trustworthy one. It is structured in such a way that it offers excelent conflict management, it efficiently defends human rights and it offers the best conditions ever for economic development. For these reasons the motion must pass.


[1] Deaconu, Ș. (2011). Constitutional Law. Bucharest: C.H. Beck Press.

[2] Deaconu, Ș. (2012). Political Institutions. Bucharest: C.H. Beck Press.

[3] Năstase, A., Aurescu B. (2011). International Public Law. Bucharest : C.H.Beck Press.

[4] Krugman, P.R., Obstfeld, M. & Melitz, M.J., 2012. Exchange Rates and Open-Economy Macroeconomics. In International economics : theory & policy. 9th ed. Boston: Pearson. pp.323-533.

[5] Glaeser, E. (2004). Do institutions cause growth? Journal of Economic Growth , 271-303.

[6] Charter of the United Nations and the Statute of the International Court of Justice


N1 (Carmel Hilal)

Human rights and democracy go hand in hand. The first article of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights states that” All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.” Furthermore, in Article 3 of that same declaration it states that “Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of person.” (1)

Ultimately, the use of force negates both articles. How can war be reconciled with a spirit of brotherhood and security of person? On one hand, the proposition concentrates on the fact that democracy is honoring the will of the people, the sanctity of human rights and the duty to uphold, protect and promote both. On the other, the motion to use military force to achieve those goals is direct violation of the will of the people and human rights, in essence circumventing those goals. Military intervention is as opposite to democracy and human as black and white.

Within the 21st century, Western forces have attempted to spread democracy in a number of countries most notably in Iraq in 2003. (2) Yet, the United Nations itself that is “supposedly” the reference point for any international conflict was bypassed on. The USA, Spain, Britain and Bulgaria, all democratic states, turned their back on democracy’s ultimate expression; the UN vote on the second resolution for invading Iraq. They simply could not allow the risk of the UN deeming the invasion of Iraq as illegal since only four votes out of fifteen were in favor. (3)

In fact, Kofi Annan stated that “I have indicated it was not in conformity with the UN charter from our point of view, from the charter point of view, it was illegal." So it logically follows that the UN itself is not keen on militarized forcible integration of democracy into any state. (4)

Furthermore, the present state of the now “democratic” Iraq is a clear indicator that military action to spread democracy is an inevitable self-destined failure. To date, more than half a million people have been killed as a result of the invasion of Iraq. (5) Correspondingly, the UN envoy to Iraq has found that around 400,000 Iraqis have been displaced due to violence this year alone. (6) These statistics make it very difficult to even suggest that military action can actually spread democracy in the first place.

Another instance of Western intervention in the name of democracy came for Libya in 2011. The United Nations voted Resolution 1973/2011 in but it restricted military action to solely protect civilians within in Libya.” Simply put, actual authorization was never given to Western forces to intervene in the political situation of Libya using force. It should also be noted that once again the necessary fifteen votes were not given but rather had five abstentions from Russia, China, Germany, Brazil and India. (7) This is another clear example that authorizing military force is not in accordance with the UN Charter.

Additionally, when the situations in Iraq and Libya are contrasted against Chile, military action is found to purely support the political and economic interests of the bearers of democracy rather than the right of the people to democracy. In 1973, as detailed in the CIA’s report Western intervention used peaceful means to not only support a military coup d’état but also establish an enduring dictatorship under Augusto Pinochet. (8) As stated in the Rettig report, his regime went on to kill at least 1,200 people, intern 80,000 people in concentration camps and torture 30,000 people. (9) These violations were not unknown to the democratic west; barely a month into his presidency the CIA learnt that President Pinochet’s right-hand man Gen. Arellano Stark had already executed 21 political prisoners, an incident now known as the Caravan of Death. (7)

Then, it becomes clear that Western military intervention for democracy is exclusively used when undemocratic states in question hold political and/or economic interests to the interveners. Further evidence supporting this fact is that the West failed to intervene in many cases where gross genocide was committed, a far uglier state than inexistence of democracy. Rwanda, Somalia, Sri Lanka and Central Africa are just a few countries that previously had or currently have bloody massacres and yet no military intervention was ever proposed. At best, the United Nations Assistance Mission for Rwanda was created, without any authorization to use force. (10)

Consequently, in light of the fact that the UN , the international beacon of democracy and freedom, itself rarely and always limitedly allows the use of military force, and that intervention always carries political economic interests irrelevant to the people’s right to democracy and freedom, I urge you to reject this motion.

Prevent War…Protect the People!

(1)    The Universal Declaration of Human Rights

(2)    http://www.theguardian.com/theguardian/2013/mar/19/iraq-war-saddam-bush-starts-2003

(3)    http://www.theguardian.com/world/2008/mar/08/iraq.unitednations

(4)    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/3661134.stm

(5)    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/10/15/iraq-death-toll_n_4102855.html

(6)    http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/middle_east/un-400000-displaced-this-year-in-iraq-violence/2014/03/27/91be9d26-b60f-11e3-bab2-b9602293021d_story.html

(7)    http://www.theguardian.com/world/2011/mar/17/libya-united-nations-air-strikes-live   

(8) CIA Activities in Chile
      Scanned Report:
      Authentication reference from CIA's website:

(9)    Report of the Chilean National Commission on Truth and Reconciliation (Rettig Report)

(10) http://www.un.org/en/peacekeeping/missions/past/unamir.htm

A2 (Mihai Păun)

We begin by underling the 3 arguments N1 ignored  and present the human rights argument separately because there were ideas about this topic, though not on the main point. We show why these ideas, not arguments, did not have any clash with our argument in the following. As a consequence all arguments were accepted automatically.


Firstly, N1 accepted the link we underlined between democracy and human rights and democracy’s vital role in defending human rights when stating „they go hand in hand”.

Secondly, N1 completely ignored 3 out of the 4 arguments presented and as a consequence accepted them.  This means they accepted that democracy is the only legitimate form of governing as it explains power in relation to people, in the name and for the people, thus modern countries having a moral duty to spread legitimate forms of governing.

They also accepted that democracy is the best invented system for conflict management, as it uses peaceful means of solving conflict, while un-democratic regimes use means of war, and violence. We illustrate this using the study of Rummel who proved that more than 4 times less, compared with authoritarian regimes, and more than 10 time less, compared to totalitarian regimes, people die from internal violence in the case of democracy. [1] Thus countries have a moral duty to spread a more efficient system that protects human rights an life itself.

Furthermore, they accepted democracy is good for business as it means stability and economic growth, states having the obligation to improve the conditions people live in.

Lastly, regarding the human rights argument, states are obliged to protect human rights due to the supremacy of international law over internal law. Our arguments are not based on using violence as a mean of establishing democracy in a country. As stated, the means used are peaceful ones - countries are obliged to solve conflicts using peaceful means - and only exceptionally using force (economic and other sanctions and very rare military intervention). These are applied not by states, but by the UN Security Council after a democratic vote.

No clash here

The argument stated defending through democracy human rights. N1 did not show that democracy cannot be spread in order to protect human rights, said nothing about the peaceful means recommended and the use of force exceptionally, but mostly about military intervention, no clash existing and our argument being thus accepted.

Logic of ideas

As most of the negative speech is based on criticising the use of force in the form of war, we underline we never proposed war or extreme force to impose democracy. Force is not war, war is an extreme case of using force. Economic  and other sanctions are force as well. We proposed the peaceful solving of conflicts and only exceptionally the use of force.

Iraq & Lybia

Regarding the other ideas expressed, we underline that US’s actions, if wrong, do not condemn all western democracies and UN, but only US itself. If that the case sanctions must be imposed to US and only to US alone. Moreover, Iraq was never an action with the goal of protecting human rights, but with the goal to fight terorism. Consequently, we strongly reject the idea that the victims in Iraq were due to spreading democracy by western countries in order to protect human rights.

While N1 in the Iraq example criticizes military intervention, in the Lybia example they do the opposite, criticising the lack of military intervention, this resulting in clear change of argumentation line.

We consider that Lybia is an example that supports our argument, as there was use of force particularly economic sanctions and a limited military intervention in order to protecy civilians.


Lastly is Chile. It is obvious that CIA, not western democracies intervened in Chile. Secondly, there was no vote of the UN Security Council. Thirdly, the intervention, as N1 perfectly underlined was to establish a dictatorship, not a democracy or to protect human rights. The numbers shown then are victims of a dictatorship and not of democracy or human rights. For these reasons, we find this example unacceptable.


Regarding the sources used by the negative side we would like to make the following observations: despite the nature of the argument on human rights is of internation law, the experts are not legal specialist, but journalists[2], novelists and screenwritters[3], thus their simple opinion not having the value of a proper expertise.

Lack of arguments

The negative side only pointed out mostly unconsistent ideas, based on irrelevant examples which do not respect the conditions of an argument and cannot be qualified as such.


All arguments were accepted by N1, 3 being ignored and the 4th not having any clash. Sources pointed out are not reliable and there is a clear lack of arguments.


[1] R.J. Rummel, Power Kills: Democracy as a Method of Nonviolence (New Brunswick, N.J.: Transaction Books, 1997), Rudolph J. Rummel, "Power, Genocide, and Mass Murder," Journal of Peace Research, Vol. 31, No. 1 (February 1994)

[2] http://www.theguardian.com/theguardian/2013/mar/19/iraq-war-saddam-bush-starts-2003

[3] http://www.theguardian.com/world/2008/mar/08/iraq.unitednations

N2 (Yazan Thabet Madridista)

We begin by stating that we did not ignore any of the arguments presented in A1 but rather stronglychampion democracy and human rights. However, we reject the assumption that only Western can be democratic. After all, there are democratic states that are not Western such as Japan,Brazil and Malaysia.

The motion itself undermines democracy by arguing that only Western countries have a moral duty to spread it across the world. This exclusion of other democracies is in itself undemocratic and makes the moral integrity of a purely Western intervention questionable at best.

Furthermore, we support peaceful means of spreading democracy such as economic sanctions and/or terminating diplomatic relations. To avoid further misconception, we define force as any method that involves any form of weaponised intervention including but not limited to arms supply.

As far as the invasion of Iraq goes, we reject blaming it exclusively on the US since it included forces from the US, the UK, Italy, the Netherlands, Hungary, Denmark, Australia and Spain amongst many others.(1)It is a shining example of Western countries’ moral duty to spread democracy across the world even when this involves using force. It is a shining example of economic interests trumping democracy, by the clear evidence that the UN deemed it illegal and yet democratic nations went ahead.(2)(3) And finally it is a shining example of failure for force to be successful means of spreading democracy. (4)(5)

In terms of Libya, A1 focused on democracy, human rights and how the UN itself encourages and supports the moral duty to spread democracy across the world. That is correct but “even when this involves using force” contradicts the UN to an extent. After all, Libya much like Rwanda was put through an intense and extreme violent situation, and even then the UN as a whole only allowed using extremely limited force to solely protect civilians, not spreading democracy.(6)(7)Both these international incidents strongly show that the UN rarely allows forced intervention in the name of democracy but rather almost exclusively prefers peaceful means.

As for Chile, we reject that the CIA’s intervention purpose was to establish a dictatorship. The dictatorship was simply acceptable due to the economic and political interests that the US held in the country, making Chile another clear example of questionable moral integrity in regards to spreading democracy.(8)(9)We argue that the same Western countries whose “moral duty” is to spread democracy are in some cases consciously blind to abuses of democracy and human rights to protect their interests. KSA is another example of a country that is famous for human rights violations yet enjoys friendly relations with the democratic West as shown by the Human Rights Watch. (10)

With this clear lack of consistent commitment towards spreading democracy, we argue that it is simply too dangerous to open such a wide undefined doorway to use force. We again defer to the UN’s wisdom, which by decree of vote has so far only allowed the use of limited force to protect civilians but never to interfere in politics or spread democracy.(6)(7)

Regarding that force is not war but rather war is extreme use of force, be that as it may, but who is the arbiter on this matter? This definition leaves a large ethical and legal grey area that can be exploitedunder the banner of “moral duty” to justify it. We can allow the UN Security Council to vote on the matter but isn’t that already being done?Trust the UN to continue handling international conflict as it alwayshas successfully with peaceful means. (11)But do not build a backdoor that allows countries to land armies, or drones or weapons or all on the front yard of other countries in the name of democracy and risk another catastrophe like Iraq. (3)(4)

Concerning resources, N1 never mentioned any personal opinions, views or evaluations by journalists but only documented hard facts. Credible and authoritative journalistic resources thatauthenticatedthose facts were used. It is no one’s personal opinion that the Iraq invasion happened in 2003 without approval from the UN Council. This is a fact.(2)(3) The same applies to all other referenced information, clearly shown if resources had been fully and carefully studied.

In conclusion, we standfor democracy. We stand for human rights. We stand for peace.But the fact remains is that using force to promote democracy is not only an epic failure at best as Iraq’s invasion has demonstrated but a fundamental violation of humans rights to a spirit of brotherhood and security of person. (3)(4)(12)

Quash this motion so we may walk together towards a free world!

Free of both tyranny and violence!

(1)    Iraq Invasion Multinational Coalition Force Demographics


(2)    http://www.theguardian.com/world/2008/mar/08/iraq.unitednations

(3)    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/3661134.stm

(4)    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/10/15/iraq-death-toll_n_4102855.html

(5)    http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/middle_east/un-400000-displaced-this-year-in-iraq-violence/2014/03/27/91be9d26-b60f-11e3-bab2-b9602293021d_story.html

(6)    http://www.theguardian.com/world/2011/mar/17/libya-united-nations-air-strikes-live

(7)    The United Nations Assistance Mission for Rwanda


(8)    CIA Activities in Chile


(9)    Report of the Chilean National Commission on Truth and Reconciliation (Rettig Report)

(10) Human Rights Watch 2013 Report


(11)The United Nations Security Council


(12)The United Nations Declaration of Human Rights


Laura Bretea

I thank both teams for a great debate, for their documented discourses and their fair play. It was an interesting debate, and I had a hard time deciding the winners. However, the team that used the most poignant argumentation and examples convinced me. 

A1 - 22

The discourse is clearly written and structured. However, there is still work to do on the contents to support the form. I was surprised by the definitions for democratic and un-democratic regimes. Democracy is not only based on legitimacy, legitimacy is just a pretext for any kind of regime. Not all un-democratic regimes explain their power using theocratic theories, most of them actually fake being democracies.

The three statements are good ideas for why democracy should be supported, but do not address the most important points of the motion: “moral duty” and “involves using force”. There are problems in the general case argumentation, and also for each argument. Only statement 3 is supported by a rationale. The other two ideas are empty; the information given is only descriptive. A1 does not explain the theory to why democratic regimes don’t fight each other; it only described different UN treaties and declarations.

Also, A1 does not explain how democracies should spread democracy in the world. Since this is the contentious issue in the motion, the affirmative team should have defined a limit to what “even when this involves force” means. The lack of clear definitions represents a strategic error that creates confusion throughout the entire round, so it affects your "strategy" score. ALso, it’s not enough to repeat the motion; the argument must be developed with several supporting ideas. A1 seems to avoid the contentious point – if force should be allowed in spreading democracy – and prefers to praise democracy.

Please pay attention to the use of citations, facts and figures. A1 uses citations that don’t support the case, but doesn’t provide figures where they are needed, such as in the argument stating that there is an obvious link between economic prosperity and democracy.

Content - 11

Strategy - 7

Style - 4

N1 - 26

Your arguments are well structured and supported by citations or undeniable facts. N1 focuses on the real issue in the motion – the use of force in spreading democracy in the world. The N1 case fills up the gap that A1 had not addressed at all. However, N1 does not focus its counterarguments on the affirmative case, as would be required in a classical debate, but gives its independent view on the motion.

N1 attacks the general idea of the affirmative case and two of its ideas: democracy as a conflict prevention tool and spreading democracy in the name of human rights. The rationale behind these two ideas is articulate and proves the point more than sufficiently. The case could have been explained only by the Iraq case and giving more space to the other two ideas brought by the affirmative case.

I have appreciated the style and the contents of the case of the N1. However, please review the rules of a classical debate follow and rebut each argument of the affirmative case. Otherwise, when confronted with a stronger team you will lose the debate.

Also, the speech would be fragmented and easier to follow if you gave titles to your arguments.

Content - 14

Strategy - 8

Style - 4

A2 - 22

I agree that some of the ideas presented by A1 were accepted by N1. However, that does not mean that the general affirmative case has resisted N1. As said before, A1’s case is a praise to democracy, and does not support

A2 finally addresses the issue of force use in spreading democracies. However, A2 also avoids defining what “force” means, using confusing arguments, making reference to conflict resolution. This adjudicator has still not understood at this point if the affirmatives believe that force should be used to impose democracy.

A2 does not seem to understand the rationale behind two N1 arguments: that the UN does not authorize the use of force to impose democracy (case of Libya), and that democracies have a history of imposing regimes to suit them and cannot be confided with using force to spread democracy (case of Chile). These two ideas are left untouched.

I accepted the sources used by N1. I considered that A2’s comment concerning the sources was unfair. I also found the A2’s conclusion to be hostile/aggressive. The adjudicator decides on the pertinence of arguments or their lack. This drawbacks of your speech are reflected in a smaller score for style.

Content - 12

Strategy - 7

Style - 3

N2 - 25

The introduction made by N2 was very good, it should have been put forward earlier. N2 proves that it understands the motion and the importance of defining “use of force”. I have noted that N2 has supplied a valid definition for this, but this happens too late in the debate, in the last speech,  it would have spared confusion had it been brought by N1. This is why you both lose points at strategy.

I appreciated also that N2 clarifies that their team supports some of the ideas put forward by the other team, your concession shows you are confident in your case - you accept the advantages of a functioning democracy, as proposed by the Affirmative team, yet you go on explaining why the motion should still fall.

N2 successfully reconstructs the ideas brought forward by N1. You further your analysis about the interests of the West that drive their interventions, and diminish even more any potential myth of morality. You bring forth examples and evidence, which make the speech rich in content.

Given you are the last speaker of the round, you need to be careful with structure. Try to deliniate areas of clash - the ideas where your team and the other one had opposing views, and draw a balance in your favor. You can give titles to these clashes (eg: The morality of forceful intervention - here you can go on explaining why the West is anything but moral when stepping in. Write under this title everything that has to do with this idea, so it's easier to spot in one paragraph). The absence of this structure makes your speech a bit less easy to follow.

Content - 13

Strategy - 8

Style - 4

Main clash areas:

The motion has a main contentious point: the use of force to spread democracy. The affirmative team have failed to properly deal this point and have lost the game. There was little clash between the two teams because the affirmative team brought ideas which could have supported both cases. The affirmative team has not managed to fight the arguments brought by negators.

  1. 1.       Imposing democracy by force is not compatible with human rights

The idea is brought by N1. A2 misses the point and states that there was no clash between the two cases. The argument is won by the negators.

  1. 2.       Iraq, Libya, Chile

The argument behind the three case studies is not fought by A2, who incorrectly points that the US or the CIA are the only ones to be blamed for these interventions.

A1 -> 22 puncte
N1 -> 26 puncte
A2 -> 22 puncte
N2 -> 25 puncte
Castiga echipa:

Carmel and Yazan (negatori)

Vrem parerea ta! Pentru asta, trebuie sa te loghezi.

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