PS_09 - Reading 10: Barry R. Posen: The Security Dilemma...

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Reading 10: Barry R. Posen: The Security Dilemma and Ethnic Conflict This article applies the realist theory of the Security Dilemma to explain the early resort to violence in countries where the imperial order breaks down, that is, when “proximate groups of people suddenly find themselves newly responsible for their own security.” The first thing that groups (ethnic, religious, or cultural) must face when no state remains, is the primary things which states themselves face—the problem of security. The Security Dilemma is particularly intense when 2 conditions hold: o When offensive and defensive military forces are more or less identical. “States” cannot signal their defensive intent. Newly independent groups must determine whether neighboring groups are threats and can examine one anothers capabilities by assessing the others cohesion and past military record. Cohesion : the groupness of groups emerging from collapsed empires gives each of them an inherent offensive military power. Strong national identities have been recognized as the key ingredient of the combat powers of armies ever since the French Revolution. But Cohesion/solidarity is hard to determine by the other, so it is
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This note was uploaded on 04/15/2008 for the course INTL 4680 taught by Professor Bloom during the Fall '07 term at UGA.

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PS_09 - Reading 10: Barry R. Posen: The Security Dilemma...

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