There are numerous examples – most recently in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Libya – where attempts at regime change backfire, triggering protracted internal power struggles, abusive clampdowns on dissent, and even full-scale insurgent campaigns, which draw the intervening states into unwinnable wars.
How to Get Regime Change Right | James Jeffrey, Former U.S. Ambassador to Iraq and Turkey
Without security, the effort is physically undercut by attacks on local leaders, infrastructure, and economic activities – the building blocks of state building and reconstruction – and politically, by demonstrating incompetence and a potential lack of commitment. Only the outside military force itself can, initially, provide that.
Political Cultures Endure After States Fall | Ryan Crocker, Former U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan and Iraq
"The first thing we need to recognize, certainly in the Middle East, is the persistence of political cultures. The change of a regime, from within or without, does not necessarily change the political culture."