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PS_01 - Fearon and Laitin"Ethnicity Insurgency and Civil...

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Fearon and Laitin: “Ethnicity, Insurgency, and Civil War” -Main question of article is whether or not the end of the Cold War has led to the increased civil wars? Not the case but rather it is due to the accumulation of protracted conflicts since the 1950s and 1960s. -Three influential wisdoms that are questioned due to the findings and date of study 1. The prevalence of civil war in the 1990s was not due to the end of the Cold War and associated changes in the international system 2. It is not true that a great degree of ethnic and religious diversity—or any particular cultural demography—by itself makes a country more prone to civil war 3. There is little evidence that one can predict where a civil war will break out by looking for where ethnic or other broad political grievances are strongest -The main factors determining both the secular trend and the cross-sectional variation in civil violence in this period and due to conditions that favor insurgency (not religion differences, etc.) -Insurgency as a form of warfare can be with political agendas, motivations, and grievances -concept most closely related to communist insurgency but also have served Islamic fundamentalists, nationalists, and “rebels” who focus mainly on traffic in coca or diamonds -Hypothesis: that financially, organizationally, and politically weak central governments render insurgency more feasible and attractive - This is due to weak local policing or inept and corrupt counterinsurgency practices -When states are relatively weak and capricious, fears and opportunity encourage would-be rulers that will have rough local justice to rise up and take control
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