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  • Author: Alexander Cooley
  • Publication Date: 11-2015
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Arnold A. Saltzman Institute of War and Peace Studies
  • Abstract: Alexander Cooley places the current conflict in Ukraine within a wider context, comparing it to other “frozen” conflicts in the states that emerged from the detritus of the Soviet Union. Is the Ukraine crisis yet another manifestation of a familiar pattern in the post-Soviet states, or is it fundamentally different?
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Sovereignty, Governance, Geopolitics
  • Political Geography: Russia, Ukraine
  • Author: Austin Long
  • Publication Date: 10-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Arnold A. Saltzman Institute of War and Peace Studies
  • Abstract: War is fundamentally a clash of organizations. Organizations provide the vital mechanisms that mobilize and convert resources into combat power as well as applying that combat power against the enemy. This is true not only of conventional militaries, but also of insurgent and terrorist groups. Organizational capacity is thus a crucial determinant of success in conflict. Stephen Biddle, for example, attributes heavy causal weight for success in modern conventional military conflict to the relative capacity of military organizations to employ a set of techniques he terms “the modern system.” Philip Selznick argues that organization is equally crucial for success in political combat, where subversion of other organizations is as important as brute force.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Islam, Terrorism, Armed Struggle, Counterinsurgency
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Iraq, Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: Austin Long
  • Publication Date: 09-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Arnold A. Saltzman Institute of War and Peace Studies
  • Abstract: The possibility of Israeli military action against the Iranian nuclear program has existed since at least 2002. However, beginning in the fall of 2011, Israeli rhetoric and international concerns about military action against Iran have reached unprecedented levels. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak began to proclaim that Iran was nearing a “zone of immunity” to Israeli attack and therefore Israel would have to act soon. In contrast, former heads of Israel's foreign and domestic intelligence services question the utility of such an attack.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Diplomacy, Islam, Nuclear Weapons, Sanctions, Nuclear Power
  • Political Geography: United States, Iran, Middle East, Israel
  • Author: Abraham Wagner
  • Publication Date: 05-2011
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Arnold A. Saltzman Institute of War and Peace Studies
  • Abstract: For most of the nation's history, questions about Presidential or executive power have not been constant, but they have certainly been recurring. At the outset of the republic, the nature of the chief executive was a matter of substantial concern to the founding fathers and a matter of considerable debate at the time of the Constitutional Convention. The early days under the Articles of Confederation had not gone all that well, and the hope of the Constitution's authors was to draft a more viable plan for a democratic government. Following 1789, the first years of the Republic were largely an experiment in democracy, characterized by a series of relatively weak presidents prior to Lincoln, presiding over a very small federal government that faced issues that were not as grave as that ones to follow in Lincoln's time and afterwards.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Peace Studies, Terrorism
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Roy Licklider
  • Publication Date: 11-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Arnold A. Saltzman Institute of War and Peace Studies
  • Abstract: This paper attempts to summarize the rapidly expanding literature on civil war outcomes, organizing it around three central questions, all of which remain under debate: (1) what are civil wars, (2) how do we know when they end, and (3) what can outsiders do to help end them and prevent their recurrence? It focuses on the normative and ethical issues involved in negotiated settlements to civil wars: do they reduce violence or not, do they encourage democracy or not, the conflict between amnesty and justice which they often raise, and, if they are seen as desirable, when are they likely to occur and how, if at all, can outsiders support them.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Democratization, Human Rights, War
  • Author: Roy Licklider
  • Publication Date: 02-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Arnold A. Saltzman Institute of War and Peace Studies
  • Abstract: The theory of transitional justice, usually either war crimes tribunals and/or truth commissions, rests on the assumption that after internal conflict societies must learn and accept the truth of what sort of violence has occurred in order to build a functioning, united society and that any solution which omits such policies should be rejected. There is no empirical support for this assumption. Moreover, acting on it often implies that civil war should be continued. Conflict resolution theory asserts that all major players, including those who have committed atrocities, must be involved in the settlement if it is to be stable. This is not likely to happen unless some people are promised amnesty. Despite its drawbacks, this seems a more appropriate strategy, especially when dealing with someone else's country and war.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, International Relations, Human Rights
  • Author: Jack Snyder, Edward Mansfield
  • Publication Date: 02-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Arnold A. Saltzman Institute of War and Peace Studies
  • Abstract: Many observers have argued that promoting democracy abroad promotes peace. Mature, stable democracies have not fought wars against each other, and they rarely suffer from civil wars. But the path to the democratic peace is not always smooth. We argue that during the initial phase of a democratic transition, states face a heightened risk of civil war. When authoritarian regimes break down, a panoply of elite factions and popular groups jockey for power in a setting in which repressive state authority has been weakened, yet democratic institutions are insufficiently developed to take their place. This can lead to civil war through the lack of institutional means to regulate or repress factional strife. We test this argument by conducting a statistical analysis. The results indicate that countries in the initial stages of democratization are more than twice as likely to experience civil war as are stable regimes or regimes undergoing a transition to autocracy. Then we discuss the causal mechanisms linking democratization and civil war in cases drawn from the statistical analysis. These findings underscore the risks in trying to promote peace through democratization in countries that lack the institutions to contain factional and communal conflicts.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, International Relations, Democratization