reading # 40 fearon 1

reading # 40 fearon 1 - Journal of Peace Research...

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View Full Document Right Arrow Icon Journal of Peace Research The online version of this article can be found at: DOI: 10.1177/0022343304043770 2004 41: 275 Journal of Peace Research James D. Fearon Why Do Some Civil Wars Last So Much Longer than Others? Published by: On behalf of: Peace Research Institute Oslo can be found at: Journal of Peace Research Additional services and information for Email Alerts: Subscriptions: Reprints: Permissions: Citations: at UNIV OF ROCHESTER LIBRARY on November 20, 2010 Downloaded from
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275 Questions At the highwater mark in 1994, there were 44 ongoing civil wars in almost one-quarter of the states in the international system. 1 This peak did not , however, represent the sudden appearance of civil war as a major international political problem with the end of the Cold War. The number of ongoing civil wars had been steadily, almost linearly, increasing from 1945 up to 1991 (see Figure 1). The collapse of the Soviet Union was associated with an upsurge of civil wars in the early 1990s, but it was an upsurge from an already high level. What accounts for this steady upward trend? Have violent civil conflicts broken out and ended at higher and higher rates over time? Or is the rate of onset significantly higher than the rate of settlement, leading to an accumulation of unresolved wars? As noted in Fearon & Laitin (2003), civil wars have been breaking out in this period at a rate of about 2.3 per year, and ending at a rate of about 1.85 per year. Another way to put this is that the average duration of civil wars in progress has been steadily increasing throughout the postwar period, reaching almost 16 years in 1999 (see Figure 1). These observations suggest that the prevalence of © 2004 Journal of Peace Research, vol. 41, no. 3, 2004, pp. 275–301 Sage Publications (London, Thousand Oaks, CA and New Delhi) DOI 10.1177/0022343304043770 ISSN 0022-3433 Why Do Some Civil Wars Last So Much Longer Than Others?* JAMES D. FEARON Department of Political Science, Stanford University Five factors are shown to be strongly related to civil war duration. Civil wars emerging from coups or revolutions tend to be short. Civil wars in Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union have also tended to be relatively brief, as have anti-colonial wars. By contrast, ‘sons of the soil’ wars that typically involve land conflict between a peripheral ethnic minority and state-supported migrants of a dominant ethnic group are on average quite long-lived. So are conflicts in which a rebel group derives major funding from contraband such as opium, diamonds, or coca. The article seeks to explain these regularities, developing a game model focused on the puzzle of what prevents negotiated settlements to long- running, destructive civil wars for which conflicting military expectations are an implausible expla- nation. In the model, regional autonomy deals may be unreachable when fluctuations in state strength
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This note was uploaded on 11/29/2010 for the course IR 109 taught by Professor Heinz during the Spring '10 term at Rochester.

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reading # 40 fearon 1 - Journal of Peace Research...

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