Pakistan is not, today, a failed state. However, for the first time since I started focusing on South Asia, in the past eight or so years, there is a real possibility that it could become one. Pakistanis must take full responsibility for this state of affairs. Their unwillingness to do so, and attempts to shift blame to the United States, India, and others, is evident. The United States does hold some of the blame; its actions have at a minimum permitted, and perhaps even promoted, Pakistan’s deterioration. Still, Pakistan has the resources, both natural and human, the experience, and the background to lift itself up if it chooses to do so. Its friends, including the United States, need to implement policies to help.
The solution to reversing affairs in Pakistan is, first and foremost, that both Pakistanis and Americans need to recognize that Pakistan needs to take responsibility for its own problems. This needs to be reinforced not just by words but by deeds on the part of the United States and other friends of Pakistan. The United States needs to support and encourage those within Pakistan who hold similar aims and objectives as the United States. A strategy to do so will require the United States to fundamentally rethink its policies, priorities, and partners in Pakistan, in the course of which—most importantly—it must turn to the middle class.
This article addresses inter-organizational collaboration (IOC) among United Nations organizations in post-conflict reconstruction and peacebuilding. Taking an organization theory perspective on the subject, the article investigates which factors drive or impede the ability of the different branches of a United Nations peacebuilding system to ‘work together as one’ and to deliver results to its beneficiaries in a more coordinated and coherent fashion. Building on evidence from extensive field research in Liberia, the article develops a typology of IOC factors, and identifies nine particularly important key factors for effective IOC. With this, the study makes available an informative basis for the allocation and prioritization of managerial attention and resources in present and future peacebuilding endeavours.
The concept of peacebuilding is a buzzword ofthe development policy and practice mainstream. The recent introduction of managerial tools and the focus on measuring the ‘effectiveness’ of peacebuilding have marginalised and depoliticised critical questions about the causes of violent conflict, and have replaced them with comforting notions for donors that peace can
be built and measured without challenging Western understanding of economy, governance, and social aspirations of people
This article discusses the politics of international administration and ownership in Kosovo, examining the case of the rebuilding of the higher education system in the period 1999–2007. It looks at the practice of international administration, analysing both the efforts of international actors to rebuild the Kosovar university system and the responses of local actors resisting and deeply influencing this process. A fine-grained reconstruction of the role of the UN administration in the process of building a new inter-ethnic university system in Kosovo reveals that local and international actors negotiated and dealt with each other, creating in the process an institutional structure that reflects the fundamental tensions and lack of consensus between the different stakeholders. The paper also argues that a mechanical view of the concept of ownership is not helpful, and that even in cases of international administration local actors are ‘co-owners’, who have a great influence on international plans and projects. It concludes that although the UN played an intrusive role in the process, the mission did not manage to achieve its goals.
The participation of the Palestinian Authority’s (PA’s) security agencies in the armed struggle against Israel in the second Palestinian uprising (2000–2005) is analyzed in this article as a response to the demand of Palestinian society, thus as a unique case of armed forces which, in the lack of political directive, became more attentive to public opinion. The article shows how Palestinian public discourse in the late 1990s–early 2000s, that was shaped by the Islamic movement of Hamas, portrayed the PA’s security officials as traitors. Members of the PA security agencies (mainly Fatah members) sought to reposition themselves in the “national camp,” and this motivated them to raise their weapons against Israeli targets. By doing so, they also removed the mental burden of turning their weapons against fellow Palestinians that was one of the major sources for their image as collaborators.
Situated in the far northeastern corner of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brcko District is widely heralded as a successful multi-ethnic society. Such portrayals are typically “top down” and centred on institutions, yet it cannot be assumed that multi-ethnicity at the institutional level necessarily translates into everyday relations between Brcko’s ethnic groups. Based on qualitative interview data, this article explores Brcko from the “bottom up”, through a focus on inter-ethnic relations in everyday life. Its central argument is that viewing Brcko through this additional lens not only raises important questions about the District’s image as a success story but also, and more broadly, has significant implications in highlighting the limitations of liberal peacebuilding and the importance of “peacebuilding from below”.
Most conflicts today arise from intra-state rather than interstate tensions. Many developing countries are unable to manage intra-state conflicts effectively, mainly because of capacity constraints in their governance and oversight institutions, political manipulation and executive interference. The result is that public confidence in the institutions remains weak and there is greater resort to private and group justice. National development is thus deeply affected. In restoring public confidence in the state’s ability to manage inter-group and inter-community conflicts, many governments are establishing and institutionalising standing national capacities for conflict prevention and resolution as extensions of their national governance framework. This article is a critical review of the efforts to establish such capacities in Kenya.
Local peace initiatives have been introduced in post-conflict settings in aid of statebuilding processes. However, contradictions in such efforts that undermine the state become apparent in a development context when government institutions are, generally, functioning. Peacebuilding initiatives in the arid lands of Kenya are a good example of this. While they have proved successful in resolving conflicts at the local level, they challenge the state structure in three ways. First, some of their features run counter to the official laws of Kenya and jeopardize the separation of powers. Second, they pose a dilemma, since their success and legitimacy are based on grassroots leadership and local concepts of justice. Both can be at odds with democratic decision-making, inclusiveness and gender equity. Third, they provide yet another tool for abuse by politicians and other local leaders. This reveals a dilemma: aspects of peacebuilding can actually undermine a statebuilding endeavour.
The conflicting relationship between peace and justice is frequently debated in the field of transitional justice. The obligation to prosecute serious crimes can contradict the measures necessary to reestablish peace among society. The predicament gives rise to a similar, though less obvious, challenge in many developing countries, where the formal justice system can be at odds with conflict management initiatives. Often, due to their inaccessibility or
incompatibility with local socio-cultural norms, official justice institutions in developing countries do not fully penetrate the whole of society. In response, conflict management and peacebuilding initiatives have proven to be more flexible and responsive to socio-political realities. While such initiatives may be more efficient in reestablishing the peace between communities in conflict, they may contradict the official law. Current policy efforts and practices in the arid lands of Kenya illustrate this dilemma. Official justice institutions have proven too weak or ill-suited to prevent or resolve conflicts between local communities. To address the prevailing tensions, local ad hoc peace initiatives have developed, which operate on the basis of local norms and include local stakeholders. Given their relative success, some high level state agents have embraced the initiatives. The Office of the President is currently drafting a national policy framework on conflict management and peacebuilding, which is in part based on the experiences in the arid lands. Such a policy framework will ultimately have to deal with a similar dilemma known from the field of
transitional justice: a decision between the establishment of peace and the application of formal justice may be required.
“The international officials who have run Bosnia as a virtual protectorate since the West forced a peace deal in 1995 are eager to scale back their presence here soon,” reported the New York Times eight years ago. Sadly, not much has changed since. Bosnia was Europe’s first major post–Cold war tragedy. Its bloody collapse attracted global attention and shaped our understanding of the security dilemmas posed by the post–Cold War world. Peace has held since the 1995 Dayton Accords, but in spite of over $15 billion in foreign aid as well as the sustained deployment of thousands of NATO and EU troops, the country still struggles to achieve the political consensus necessary to cement its stability and break free of international tutelage. To make matters worse, the situation has deteriorated, especially over the last four years. Circumstances on the ground are polarized and increasingly tense. Meanwhile, Bosnia’s problems are contributing to rifts between the United States and Europe.
The fifteenth anniversary of the Dayton Accords arrives this fall, along with the second round of national elections since tensions have begun again. The time is ripe for a reorientation of transatlantic strategy. Revitalizing the stalled reform progress will be crucial to overcome the debilitating dynamics of ethnic nationalism and to allow self-sustaining peace to take hold. To do so, however, both the United States and Europe should reassess their current policies and recover their common perspective.
Using an “event-study” methodology, this paper analyzes the aftermath of civil war in a cross-section of countries. It focuses on those experiences where the end of conflict marks the beginning of a relatively lasting peace. The paper considers 41 countries involved in internal wars in the period 1960-2003. In order to provide a comprehensive evaluation of the aftermath of war, the paper considers a host of social areas represented by basic indicators of economic performance, health and education, political development, demographic trends, and conflict and security issues. For each of these indicators, the paper first compares the post- and pre-war situations and then examines their dynamic trends during the post-conflict period. The paper concludes that, even though war has devastating effects and its aftermath can be immensely difficult, when the end of war marks the beginning of lasting peace, recovery and improvement are indeed achieved.
When discussing the end of British colonial rule in Africa, many historians have highlighted the role of postwar international relations and the impact of domestic imperial politics on decolonization and have failed to recognize the role of African nationalists. This article argues that such a viewpoint is flawed because it conceives of colonial policy makers as isolated and autonomous entities impervious to changes taking place in the colonies. The national liberation movements in Ghana, Central Africa, Kenya, and other regions of East Africa are explored in this article to illustrate the central role that colonial subjects played in the British decolonization of Africa. While dominant scholarship on the failures of the post-colonial state has made studies of decolonization and African nationalism less fashionable, it is becoming increasingly clear that our understanding of the nature and mechanics of the crises that beset the continent requires taking fresh stock of the record of European colonial rule in Africa. In this regard, the study of colonialism and decolonization in continues to be of critical relevance.
Success in war depends on alignment between operations and strategy. Commonly, such alignment takes time as civilian and military leaders assess the effectiveness of operations and adjust them to ensure that strategic objectives are achieved. This article assesses prospects for the US-led campaign in Afghanistan. Drawing on extensive field research, the authors find that significant progress has been made at the operational level in four key areas: the approach to counterinsurgency operations, development of Afghan security forces, growth of Afghan sub-national governance and military momentum on the ground. However, the situation is bleak at the strategic level. The article identifies three strategic obstacles to campaign success: corruption in Afghan national government, war-weariness in NATO countries and insurgent safe havens in Pakistan. These strategic problems require political developments that are beyond the capabilities of the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF). In other words, further progress at the operational level will not bring ‘victory’. It concludes, therefore, that there is an operational-strategic disconnect at the heart of the ISAF campaign.
How useful is the concept of patrimonialism to analyze state formation and political dynamics in postcolonial nation-states? Using Tunisia, Morocco, and Iraq during critical periods of state-building following the end of colonial rule, the author considers this question. The purpose of the article is to build on Max Weber by exploring how patrimonialism operates in kin-based social contexts where power on the basis of kinship ties is exerted not only by a central authority but also by leaders of local communities organized along lines of real or fictive kinship—as was the case in the three countries in the period under examination. Suggesting that Weber undertheorized the way in which central authority relates to local collectivities in his analysis of patrimonialism, the author identifies three patterns in the strategies used by central power toward local patrimonial networks: marginalization, integration, and shifts between marginalization and integration. The article argues that central patrimonialism can be accommodated with all three strategies directed toward local patrimonialism.
I n July 2009, the Center for Complex Operations (CCO) facilitated a workshop sponsored by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to capture the experiences of USDA agricultural advisors deployed to ministries and Provincial Reconstruction Teams (PRTs) in Iraq and Afghanistan. The discussions yielded numerous individual observations, insights, and potential lessons from the work of these advisors on PRTs in these countries. This article presents a broad overview of the challenges identified by the conference participants and highlights key recommendations generated as a result of suggestions and comments made at the workshop. The workshop was intended to capture insights and lessons from the !eld to develop recommendations for improvements in PRT operations, with a particular focus on agricultural development. The 30 participants came from a broad spectrum of USDA: the National Resources Conservation Service, Food Safety and Inspection Service, Farm and Foreign Agricultural Services, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, Agricultural Marketing Service, and the Grain Inspection, Packers, and Stockyards Administration. To focus the agenda, CCO and USDA designed a preworkshop survey administered to the 30 USDA returnees (22 from Iraq and 8 from Afghanistan). After receiving 24 responses, CCO and USDA used the results to develop an agenda built around facilitated group discussions in four areas: doctrine and guidance, civil-military cooperation and command and control relationships, projects and their impact on the host nation, and administrative issues.
Which components of power sharing contribute to the duration of peace and what explains the linkages between institutional design and stability? The authors argue that certain types of political power sharing are associated with more durable peace than others, primarily through their positive effects on governance and public service delivery. In particular, closed-list proportional representation (PR) electoral systems stand out among power-sharing arrangements, due to their ability to deliver superior governance outcomes which, in turn, can promote stability by undercutting the initial motivations for conflict or by reducing the feasibility of rebellion. The authors argue that these positive outcomes result from closed-list PR’s ability to increase party discipline and checks on executive power, while reducing incentives for personalistic voting. The introduction of political institutions in postconflict negotiated settlements allows us to test the independent effects of institutions on governance and stability using survival analysis and a case study.
This article provides an overview of the training package that was developed under the three year British Council INSPIRE project between the Division of Peace Studies at the University of Bradford and the Department of Defence and Diplomatic Studies at Fatima Jinnah Women University (FJWU) in Rawalpindi, Pakistan. Academics, students, policymakers and parliamentarians in Pakistan were the intended stakeholders in the project, which began in 2009. The package comprised six modules and accompanying learning materials that aimed to develop practical and applied skills for analysis of peace and conflict related issues, with the objective of enhancing teaching and research on Pakistan’s multiple-level conflicts, and capacity to scrutinise the policies and programmes of government, NGOs and donors.
The past two decades have seen international agencies pay closer attention to the relationship between conflict and development. An example of this is the UNDP and its conflict-related development analysis (CDA), which aims to identify the causes of conflict and design measures that will enhance development while reducing conflict. Through the case study of the CDA’s application in the occupied Palestinian territory, the article reveals its main limitations including an emphasis on conflict management (as opposed to conflict reduction), the choice of (neo-liberal) development model, prioritisation of particular partners over others (i.e. ‘state’ over non-state) and an erroneous assumption of neutrality. These have become manifested into the UNDP’s current programme for action which undermines its own stated objectives, to work ‘on’ the causes of conflict rather than ‘in’ or ‘around’ conflict. The UNDP’s experience therefore has important lessons for the use of conflict analysis and policy design elsewhere.
The social reintegration of ex-combatants is one of the most critical aspects of peacebuilding processes. However, contrary to economic reintegration in which it would be possible to set up some quantitative indicators in terms of accessing vocational training opportunities, employment and livelihoods income for the assessment of success, social reintegration is an intangible outcome. Therefore, what constitutes a successful social reintegration and how it could be assessed continues to be the challenge for both academics and practitioners. This article will undertake an investigation of the preliminary parameters of social reintegration at the macro, meso and micro levels in order to identify a set of indicators for programme assessment. A nuanced understanding of ex-combatant reintegration is expected to allow the development of context-based indicators according to the specific characteristics of that particular environment. The article also recommends the use of participatory research methods as they would be more appropriate for the measurement of social reintegration impact.
The aim of this article is to shed light on the distinctive role of the EU in Security Sector Reform (SSR) in the case of the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPTs) and examine how SSR has contributed to the overall state-building project. Following the Oslo Accords, the EU engaged actively in the state-building project in the OPTs taking a number of initiatives on the ground. Since then security has been a key issue in all Israeli–Palestinian agreements and has also became synonymous with Palestinian statehood. The article draws upon literature on state-building and SSR and its central aim is to examine the distinctive initiatives that the EU has taken in order to help the Palestinian Authority (PA) reform both its security and judiciary sector as part of its broader state-building strategy towards the OPTs, as well as provide explanations on why these policies had limited impact.
Focusing on conflict legacy, this article contributes to the study of domestic mediating conditions as an explanation of “shallow Europeanisation” in the Western Balkans, defined as a disconnect between European rules and local practices. It critiques the prevalent neo-Weberian understanding of state capacity, which highlights rule-enforcement capability of state institutions, but reduces conflict legacy to a question of resources. The article argues that a relational approach to state capacity which attributes its strength to enduring ties among state and non-state actors better captures the challenge to European Union (EU)-driven domestic transformation in a post-conflict context. A case study of the Hercegovina Holding is used to unravel a Bosnian Croat network originating during the 1992–1995 Bosnian war. The empirical evidence of the network’s operation illustrates how key EU benchmarks for private sector development can be undermined, making a case for a more rigorous conceptualisation of conflict legacy as a domestic constraint on the EU’s leverage.
The Haiti Stabilization Initiative (HSI) was an innovative interagency program prototype designed to secure and stabilize the highly volatile urban slum of Cité Soleil. Between 2007 and 2010, HSI successfully tested a sophisticated Monitoring & Evaluation (M&E) program using a variant of the Department of Defense supported system Measuring Progress in Conflict Environment (MPICE). Through MPICE, HSI and its analysis partner Logos analyzed outcomes and impacts within key sectors. The analysis revealed that one needs a clear ‘theory of change.’ However, many stabilization or counterinsurgency programs do not evaluate themselves. They lack a provable hypothesis, and proving causality of change based on program efforts remains a challenge. Furthermore, it is critical to measure the achievement of ‘outcomes’ within and across sectors, not just mechanical ‘outputs’ of programs. It is also necessary to triangulate data and overlap sources. Toward that end, perception-based data (surveys, focus groups, expert elicitations sessions) and objective data (MINUSTAH statistics, crime reports) provided for a rich form of ‘triangulation’ analysis.
In countries affected by insurgencies, development programs may potentially reduce violence by improving economic outcomes and increasing popular support for the government. In this paper, we test the efficacy of this approach through a large-scale randomized controlled trial of the largest development program in Afghanistan at the height of the Taliban insurgency. We find that the program generally improved economic outcomes, increased support for the government, and reduced insurgent violence. However, in areas close to the Pakistani border, the program did not increase support for the government and actually increased insurgent violence. This heterogeneity in treatment effects appears to be due to differences between districts in the degree of infiltration by external insurgents, who are not reliant on the local population for support. The results suggest that while development programs can quell locally-based insurgencies, such programs may be counterproductive when implemented in areas where insurgents are not embedded in the local population.
Community Driven Development (CDD) projects are now a major component of World Bank assistance to many developing countries. While varying greatly in size and form, such projects aim to ensure that communities have substantive control in deciding how project funds should be used. Giving beneficiaries the power to manage project resources is believed by its proponents to lead to more efficient and effective fund use. It is also claimed that project-initiated participatory processes can have wider ‘spillover’ impacts, building local institutions and leadership, enhancing civic capacity, improving social relations and boosting state legitimacy. This paper briefly reviews the World Bank’s experience of using CDD in conflict-affected and post-conflict areas of the East Asia and Pacific region. The region has been at the forefront of developing large-scale CDD programming including high profile ‘flagships’ such as the Kecamatan Development Program (KDP) in Indonesia and the Kapitbisig Laban Sa Kahirapan-Comprehensive and Integrated Delivery of Social Services (KALAHI-CIDSS) project in the Philippines. As of the end of 2007, CDD constituted fifteen percent of the lending portfolio in East Asia compared with ten percent globally. Many of East Asia’s CDD projects have operated consciously or not in areas affected by protracted violent conflict. CDD has also been used as an explicit mechanism for post-conflict recovery in Mindanao in the Philippines and in Timor Leste, and for conflict victim reintegration in Aceh, Indonesia. It then looks at the evidence on whether and how projects have achieved these outcomes, focusing on a range of recent and current projects in Indonesia, the Philippines, Thailand, and Timor-Leste. The analysis summarizes results, draws on comparative evidence from other projects in the region and elsewhere, and seeks to identify factors that explain variation in outcomes and project performance. The paper concludes with a short summary of what we know, what we don’t, and potential future directions for research and programming.
International peace-building interventions in post-conflict countries are intended to transform the socio-political context that led to violence and thereby build a stable and lasting peace. Yet the UN’s transitional governance approach to peace-building is ill-suited to the challenge of dealing with the predatory political economy of insecurity that often emerges in post-conflict societies. Evidence from peace-building attempts in Cambodia, East Timor and Afghanistan illustrates that the political economy incentives facing domestic elites in an environment of low credibility and weak institutionalisation lead to a cycle of patronage generation and distribution that undermine legitimate and effective governance. As a result, post-conflict countries are left vulnerable to renewed conflict and persistent insecurity. International interventions can only craft lasting peace by understanding the political economy of conflict persistence and the potential policy levers for altering, rather than perpetuating, those dynamics.
This article examines the impact of the reintegration of former Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) combatants on the post-war recovery of Kosovo. The exploration is conducted through a micro- and macro-security perspective. The analysis focuses on the three main issues: preferential treatment of former KLA combatants, identification and utilisation of KLA resources, and the long-term implications of reintegration on the peacebuilding process in Kosovo and regional security. The findings from this analysis are presented in the form of a list of general conclusions and lessons that can be applied by those agencies involved in the reintegration of former combatants in Kosovo and other similar circumstances.
Post-conflict reconstruction and stabilisation have focused upon the establishment of both strong states capable of maintaining stability and various forms of ‘Good Governance’. However, both presume the development of substantial security sectors and highly functioning administrative systems within unrealistically brief periods of time. The failure to meet such inflated expectations commonly results in the disillusionment of both the local populations and the international community, and, hence, increased state fragility and decreased aid financing and effectiveness. As such the authors re-frame the basic question by asking how stabilisation can be achieved in spite of weak state institutions during reconstruction processes. Based upon extensive field research in Afghanistan and other conflict-affected contexts, the authors propose a model of post-conflict stabilisation focused primarily on the attainment of legitimacy by state institutions. Finally, the authors examine how legitimacy-oriented stabilisation and reconstruction will benefit from emerging models of ‘collaborative governance’ which will allow international interventions, through consociational relationships with fragile states and civil society, to bolster rather than undermine political legitimacy.
The 2011 World development report looks across disciplines and experiences drawn from around the world to offer some ideas and practical recommendations on how to move beyond conflict and fragility and secure development. The key messages are important for all countries-low, middle, and high income-as well as for regional and global institutions: first, institutional legitimacy is the key to stability. When state institutions do not adequately protect citizens, guard against corruption, or provide access to justice; when markets do not provide job opportunities; or when communities have lost social cohesion-the likelihood of violent conflict increases. Second, investing in citizen security, justice, and jobs is essential to reducing violence. But there are major structural gaps in our collective capabilities to support these areas. Third, confronting this challenge effectively means that institutions need to change. International agencies and partners from other countries must adapt procedures so they can respond with agility and speed, a longer-term perspective, and greater staying power. Fourth, need to adopt a layered approach. Some problems can be addressed at the country level, but others need to be addressed at a regional level, such as developing markets that integrate insecure areas and pooling resources for building capacity Fifth, in adopting these approaches, need to be aware that the global landscape is changing. Regional institutions and middle income countries are playing a larger role. This means should pay more attention to south-south and south-north exchanges, and to the recent transition experiences of middle income countries.
Civil service reconstruction is important in post-conflict countries because conflict erodes institutions and civil service capacity. And because successful reconstruction-in all sectors -requires domestic capacity to implement projects, a weak civil service undermines overall reconstruction efforts. Moreover, donor assistance is crucial to a country’s rebuilding, and coordinating such assistance requires a certain amount of civil service capacity. In addition, the Bank has found that country ownership is essential for successful projects. But country ownership can be jeopardized if international agencies and nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) dominate reconstruction efforts, overwhelming states already weakened by conflict. Civil service reconstruction offers an opportunity to start anew, with little of the resistance to civil service reform often encountered from politicians and civil servants. It allows good practices to be instilled from the outset-without having to undo bad ones.
This note, summarizing the analysis and recommendations of an upcoming CPR Working Paper of the same title, looks at issues related to financing modalities and aid management arrangements in post-conflict situations. It makes a number of recommendations based on a review of several recent case studies, of which four are assessed in detail: West Bank and Gaza, Bosnia and Herzegovina, East Timor, and Afghanistan. It focuses on the lessons of experience on multi-donor trust funds and on the recipient government’s aid management architecture in post-conflict settings. This paper is concerned with the specific issues of financing modalities and aid management arrangements in post-conflict situations, and advances a number of recommendations on the basis of a review of several recent cases, among which four are assessed in detail: West Bank and Gaza, Bosnia and Herzegovina, East Timor (Timor-Leste) and Afghanistan. While generally applicable recommendations do emerge from the review, the most important recommendation is to tailor the design and sequencing of financing and aid coordination to the circumstances of the specific case.
This note looks at the challenge of capacity building in post conflict countries, including at options for creating capacity, and the trade-offs between speed, and longer-term impact, the need to ensure that aid management agencies include sunset provisions, and six proposed general lessons for more sustainable capacity building. Rebuilding institutions is much more difficult than rebuilding damaged infrastructure. Capacity building is an enormous challenge, a challenge that requires imagination, cooperation, and hard work among those who seek to improve the conditions of conflict-affected countries.
This report presents the results of the study on the demobilization and reinsertion of excombatants from illegal armed groups in Colombia. The report describes and analyzes the Colombian case, compares it with international experience, discusses critical issues of the current program, and presents options to improve its design and implementation. The study responds to a request by the Colombian government to conduct an assessment of the previous and current approaches to demobilization and reinsertion in Colombia and, in light of national and international experience, to present options to improve the program. This study relied principally on secondary data and information from existing studies, essays, and press articles produced by government agencies, nongovernmental organizations, United Nations and bilateral agencies, specialized analysts, and media. The analysis also used primary information collected for the study, including: (1) information from interviews with government and non-government sources about the current condition of individuals demobilized during the 1990s; (2) the profiles of a sample of young excombatants (18-26 years old) enrolled in the current reinsertion program in Medellin and Bogota; (3) the assessment of the demobilization and reinsertion experience of the 1990s as viewed by leaders of existing foundations from four of the demobilized groups; and (4) a special work session held with 50 representatives from diverse private-sector associations and businesses. This study assesses Colombia’s experience using a framework of five interwoven phases from armed conflict to peace: prevention, demobilization, reinsertion, reintegration, and reconciliation. This framework together with accumulated national and international best practices in technical aspects of the operations of disarmament, demobilization, and reinsertion (DDR) programs are used in the analysis of the current Program of Demobilization and Reinsertion (PDR).
A purpose of this book is to present recent World Bank analytical work on the causes of violence and conflict in Colombia, highlighting pilot lending programs oriented to promote peace and development. The Bank’s international experiences in post-conflict situations in different countries and their relevance for Colombia are also examined in this volume. The identification of socio-economic determinants of conflict, violence, and reforms for peace came about as a key element of the Bank’s assistance strategy for Colombia, defined in conjunction with government authorities and representatives of civil society. This report is organized as follows: After the introductory chapter, Chapter 2 provides a conceptual framework for understanding a broad spectrum of political, economic, and social violence issues; identifies the role played by both the country’s history and the unequal access to economic and political power in the outbreak and resilience of political violence; and examines as costs of violence the adverse impact on Colombia’s physical, natural, human, and social capital. Chapter 3 analyzes the costs of achieving peace and its fiscal implications; and indicates that exclusion and inequality rather than poverty as the main determinants of violence and armed conflict. Chapter 4 reviews the Bank’s experience in assisting countries that are experiencing, or have already overcome, domestic armed conflict. The authors illustrate the relevance of these cases for Colombia.
This note looks at the challenge of capacity building in post conflict countries, including options for creating capacity and the trade-offs between speed and longer-term impact, the need to ensure that aid management agencies include sunset provisions, and six proposed general lessons for more sustainable capacity building.
Although modern-day armed conflict is horrific for women, recent conflict and postconflict periods have provided women with new platforms and opportunities to bring about change. The roles of women alter and expand during conflict as they participate in the struggles and take on more economic responsibilities and duties as heads of households. The trauma of the conflict experience also provides an opportunity for women to come together with a common agenda. In some contexts, these changes have led women to become activists, advocating for peace and long-term transformation in their societies. This article explores how women have seized on the opportunities available to them to drive this advocacy forward: including the establishment of an international framework on women, peace, and security that includes United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325 and other international agreements and commitments to involving women in post-conflict peace-building. The article is based on onthe-ground research and capacity-building activities carried out in the Great Lakes Region of Africa on the integration of international standards on gender equality and women’s rights into post-conflict legal systems.
The US-based Liberian diaspora’s role in the country’s 14-year civil war and its aftermath is paradoxical. Consistent with existing literature on the role of diasporas in conflict, the group largely played a role contributing to the outbreak of the Civil War and its continuation. However, in a paradigmatic shift, the group is currently contributing towards the peace-building process by serving as norm entrepreneurs. Factors that have contributed to this shift include a strong demand in the homeland for a change in the ‘rules of the game’, a shift in US foreign policy towards promotion of democracy in Africa, and a concerted regional and international effort at promoting peace-building norms. The inclusiveness of the mechanisms for norm transfer, the conduct of the messengers and local perception of norms, affect the degree to which they are well received.
This essay offers an explanation for how and why women’s rights are included in contemporary peace agreements. I identify six causal mechanisms by which women secured participation and women’s rights in the peace processes of Burundi (1998–2000) and Northern Ireland (1996–98). First, violent conflict and peace talks produce the conditions of ‘grievance’ and ‘optimism’ necessary for social movement mobilization. Second, women use ‘procedural grafting’ to demand inclusion in peace processes. Third, they use ‘strategic essentialism’ to overcome the ethno-political divisions of the conflict. Fourth, women call upon relevant practices used in peace processes of the Global South. Fifth, high-level actors may influence peace processes to further international objectives. Sixth, women’s involvement with transnational feminist networks facilitates the reproduction of international human rights language.
This article uses security sector reform as a prism for exploring the dilemmas that confront multidimensional United Nations peace operations as they seek to build peace by building states. It claims that the United Nations finds itself severely restricted when trying to translate ideas of human security into practice in the form of a people-centered approach to postconflict security assistance.
The article explores the dilemmas of providing security assistance to post-conflict states. It argues that when used as a strategy for intervention, SSR exposes the inherent contradictions of liberal peace-building. The article focuses on the Weberian state monopoly versus other—hybrid or non-state—forms of security and justice provision. It presents the background for the discussion and suggests that as a strategy for intervention, the choice is not simply between a top-down ‘imposition’ of a universal state model and a bottom-up ‘working with what is there’ approach. It is also a choice between direct and indirect forms of rule. This makes the dilemma real for liberal-minded practitioners and observers.
The essay explores how the statebuilding intervention in Liberia produces a situation in which the locus for public authority is unclear and lines of responsibility and accountability are difficult to pinpoint. It does so by zooming in on one particular element in the intervention – the Governance and Economic Management Assistance Program – and concludes that the opacity surrounding this programme risks defeating the wider liberal objectives of the statebuilding intervention.
While political accommodation and the passage of time may heal the wounds in Iraqi society, it is just as likely that the lack of real reconciliation will undermine the political process.
The world breathed a sigh of relief at the announcement of a new Iraqi government on 21 December 2010. After nine months of wrangling following the 7 March elections, Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki finally engineered a deal that kept him in place at the head of a 42-person cabinet. Maliki was unable to name a full coterie of ministers; ten of the portfolios, including the main security ministries, are being managed on a temporary basis by other ministers until permanent nominations are made. Nevertheless, approval of the cabinet brought to an end a crisis that left the political system in limbo and saw a deterioration of the security situation.
But now the deed is done, a much bigger question looms: will the government be able to manage Iraq, stabilise the country further and heal the internal divisions that threaten its long-term security?
State-building has been seen as the path to both security and development in East Timor. State-building, however, has been approached as an exercise in the transfer of key liberal institutions, with relatively little attention paid by either relevant international agencies or the East Timorese government to situating these institutions within a social context. In particular, there has been little effort on the part of central institutions to engage with local, community and customary governance. Building a state in which people do not feel at home and where they do not speak the language of governance threatens to marginalise the majority of the population and is not a recipe for nationhood, democracy or security. Nation-building, by contrast, could suggest a renewed emphasis on the vital connection between central government and people, in which legitimacy is embedded and active citizenship is possible. Thus conceived, nation-building requires processes of communication and exchange that effectively include rural people, their values, practices and concerns, as a nation of citizens requires some shared language and institutions of political community.
This book explores the contradictions that emerge in international statebuilding efforts in war-torn societies. Since the end of the Cold War, more than 20 major peace operations have been deployed to countries emerging from internal conflicts. This book argues that international efforts to construct effective, legitimate governmental structures in these countries are necessary but fraught with contradictions and vexing dilemmas. Drawing on the latest scholarly research on postwar peace operations, the volume: adresses cutting-edge issues of statebuilding including coordination, local ownership, security, elections, constitution making, and delivery of development aid; features contributions by leading and up-and-coming scholars; provides empirical case studies including Afghanistan, Cambodia, Croatia, Kosovo, Liberia, Sierra Leone, South Africa, and others; presents policy-relevant findings of use to students and policy makers alike.
Fragile states are the toughest development challenge of our era. But we ignore them at our peril: about one billion people live in fragile states, including a disproportionate number of the world’s extreme poor, and they account for most of today’s wars. These situations require a different framework of building security, legitimacy, governance, and the economy. Only by securing development – bringing security and development together to smooth the transition from conflict to peace and then to embed stability so that development can take hold – can we put down roots deep enough to break the cycle of fragility and violence. Currently, we face critical gaps in our international capabilities to secure development. We need to better integrate military, political, legal, developmental, financial and technical tools with a variety of actors, from states to international organisations, civil society, and the private sector. Beyond assistance, we need new networked relationships between peacekeeping forces and development practitioners, and a new approach to security, to help the people in fragile states shift from being victims to principal agents of recovery.
While the impact of norms on post-conflict statebuilding operations has been well-explored in the literature, the ways in which the same normative frameworks affect the exit practices of such operations has so far remained unaddressed. To fill this gap, this paper examines the impact of the liberal-democratic norms governing statebuilding operations on the timing and process of exit of post-conflict international transitional administrations. To that end, it first examines the concept of exit, arguing that exit is best considered as a process rather than an event. The second section outlines the normative framework that has shaped postconflict statebuilding activities since the end of the cold war, and proposes three ways in which norms can affect exit: first, that norms act as blueprints for statebuilding and can thereby shape benchmarks for exit; second, that norms create “zones of permissibility” that explicitly commit statebuilders to a transitional presence and make exit central to the legitimacy of statebuilding operations; and third, that local actors strategically use norms, in particular those of self-determination and the taboo of permanent control of a territory, to push for an early exit of statebuilding operations. The third section explores both the scope and limitations of the three functions of norms with regard to exit in the context of a brief case study of UNMIK’s exit from Kosovo. The article concludes with some observations about the impact of the findings for exit strategies of international actors from statebuilding operations.
This case study details the development and progress of a bi-communal Conflict Resolution Trainer Group on the divided island of Cyprus. The Trainer Group consists of 30 Greek and Turkish Cypriot members and can be defined as an internal grassroots structure aiming to initiate a range of peace-building projects. The report begins with a short description of the historical development of the Cyprus conflict. The main section of the report deals with the origins and the development of the Trainer Group as one of the most successful social initiatives on Cyprus. The analysis focuses on the obstacles the Trainer Group encountered when implementing their initiative and on how the spectrum of activities of the Trainer Group could be broadened by the support of foreign actors.
The increasingly active role of international organisations in conflict prevention and post-conflict reconstruction in recent years has been complemented by a continuous shift from humanitarian assistance to a more holistic and sustainable response to complex emergencies. Concentrating on a sub-national level, the article analyses the potential and practical results of the area-based development approach (ABD) in contributing to conflict prevention and linking reconstruction and development. Firstly, it analyses the theoretical and methodological underpinnings of the approach in light of current academic discourse on conflict and reconstruction. Secondly, it assesses the practical contribution of two ABD programmes in South and Southwest Serbia to conflict prevention and development. Based on these findings it summarises and discusses key strengths and limitations of the approach. It argues that although ABD is often effective in responding to complex conflict characteristics on sub-national levels, under its current conceptualisation, it suffers from a limited ability to respond to the full complexity of issues related to conflict and development on multiple levels. The contradiction in the terms ‘integrated’ and ‘area-based’ needs to be addressed both conceptually and in practical applications, and the article formulates recommendations for the improvement of the approach in this respect.
This article examines the political geography of state building in contemporary sub-Saharan Africa. The absence of interstate war has produced a unique situation for contemporary state builders in Africa; they have inherited states with relatively fixed borders encapsulating a variety of environmental and geographic conditions, compounded by varying distributions of population densities. The author examines the effects of a variety of strategies that African rulers have employed to enhance their state-building efforts given the type of national design they inhabit. These strategies include the allocation of citizenship, interventions in land tenure patterns, and the adoption and management of national currencies. The author tests the effects of these strategies on several dimensions of state capacity in sub-Saharan Africa from 1960 to 2004 using a variety of statistical analyses. The results indicate that the strategies currently adopted by African rulers have generally failed to substantially augment their capacity.
Since the fall of the Taliban regime, Afghanistan has become an experiment for the international community in installing democracy from outside. Externally led democratization against rushed timetables and based on formal institutions, however, was not rooted enough in the traditional institutions of Afghanistan and was conducted simultaneously with war fighting, while any benefits from reconstruction were not reaching the people. This article argues that, as a result of this lack of ‘buy-in’, the gap between democratic ideals and the lives of ordinary Afghans is widening, thereby undermining popular support, perhaps for a generation. Seeing Afghans primarily as recipients of, and not the driving force for, democracy, coupled with growing dissatisfaction with progress on economic development, may ultimately provoke popular resistance.
This paper examines the post-war reconstruction programme in Afghanistan, arguing that it contains the seeds of radical social change. The paper analyses the tensions of the present reconstruction project in light of the past experience of similar programmes launched by Afghan rulers and their foreign supporters. The central argument is that the conflation of post-war reconstruction with a broader agenda for development and modernisation has brought out a wide range of tensions associated with social change. Simultaneously the prominent foreign role in the undertaking has increasingly had negative effects. As a result, the entire project shows signs of severe contradictions that are adding to the problems caused by the growing insurgency.
Last June, Libera’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) threw a live wire into the ranks of the country’s post-war establishment. Having gathered more than 20,000 statements and examined many scores of witnesses, the Commission handed down a Final Report recommending that 98 people be prosecuted for violations of international humanitarian law and war crimes committed during Liberia’s civil war. Among those named were several sitting members of the country’s legislature, a number of prominent businessmen and public officials, and a professor at the University of Liberia.1 In the Liberian capital, Monrovia, a group of men recommended for prosecution by the TRC called a press conference at which they warned ominously that the Report threatened to return Liberia to war. Several of the Commissioners received death threats, some on their cell phones, others in notes hand-delivered to their homes. At least two Commissioners went into hiding. It was not only among former warlords that the TRC’s Final Report caused displeasure. In addition to the list of those recommended for prosecution, the Final Report went on to recommend that a further 50 people be barred from public office for 30 years on account of the support they gave to warring factions. Included on this list was the country’s feted president, Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, an icon of the international women’s movement and a widely lauded exemplar of good governance and civility.
This article surveys recent cases of internationalized statebuilding in postintervention, post–(ethnic) conflict societies in the light of an academic tradition that has seen military forces as a particularly effective vehicle for integrating a country’s diverse population. It is argued that armed forces that are ethnically representative in their ranks and leadership can encourage a sense of commonality across ethnic boundaries, which can help secure a fragile peace. However, the connection between representativeness and integration is intricate; and whereas outside powers may enable otherwise unlikely outcomes, their leverage is circumscribed by a number of factors. The article also suggests that an ethnically representative army may “tie up” capabilities in ways that reduce the likelihood of military intervention in politics or (ethnic) violence perpetrated by military personnel.
The broadened and deepened notion of security has been evolving in two dimensions, one primarily intellectual and the other concerned more with political practice and policy. This paper briefly describes these dimensions, and then critically examines the acceptance of the new notion of security in the form a security-is-development thesis in South African security policy. This case shows how the security-is-development thesis affects the functions of security agencies and legitimates their anti-democratic behaviour. The case serves as a cautionary tale about how an intellectual construct, movement and school, originally intended to be a critique of state behaviour, can become a tool of state power at the expense of democracy.
Following the four-year Bonn Agreement implementation period, from December 2001 to December 2005, the London Conference on Afghanistan was convened, 31 January – 1 February, to reaffirm the commitment of world leaders to the next phase of statebuilding and reform in Afghanistan. The central document of this gathering, the Afghanistan Compact, sets forth a number of time-bound benchmarks for the next five years in the areas of security, governance and development. This article examines key aspects of the compact and what will be required for the government of Afghanistan to meet the various targets, along with the support of the international community. Policy recommendations are further advanced to facilitate reconstruction efforts and to sustain a sufficient level of international engagement to avert failure in Afghanistan.
In the aftermath of civil wars, international actors often worry about the incoherence, tribalism, and division of war-torn nation-states like Afghanistan. However, the problems encountered in the Afghanistan recovery and reconstruction effort illustrate that the divisions, rivalries and fragmentation of authority of the international community have constituted just as big an obstacle to what the UN now calls ‘peace building’. Sustainable stability and peace, to say nothing of democracy, require international actors to delegate some sovereign functions to a multilateral entity that can reinforce rather than undermine the institutions responsible for the reconstruction of the nation-state. The history and contemporary situation in Afghanistan makes clear that there is an important need for the peace-building mechanisms proposed by the UN Secretary-General’s High-level Panel. This would involve a unified international decision-making body that would act as a counterpart to the recipient national government and potentially bring order to the anarchy that invariably flows from the multiple agendas, doctrines and aid budgets of the array of external actors involved in peace building in Afghanistan and elsewhere.
Counterinsurgency strategies employed by the US military in Afghanistan have led to the US military embarking on civil governance reform. This has created new forms of civil–military relations with Afghan and international counterparts. These relations appear less dramatic than ‘conventional’ civil–military relations, in that they do not create the same visible alignment on the ground between military and non-military identities. In addition, the increased merging of civil and military work areas creates a new complexity that stems from semantic confusion. This complexity is mostly about norms and principles, in that the core puzzle is the more general question of what kinds of tasks the military should and should not do, rather than about violent consequences to civilians and questions of neutrality. This article proposes the term ‘third-generation civil–military relations’ to capture and examine the conceptual challenges that stem from the merging of military and civil work areas in Afghanistan’s reconstruction.
From a management perspective, this article presents a process model to analyze cooperation between military and civilian actors in peace support operations. By means of multiple case study research, the article applies the model to eight partnerships between the Dutch Provincial Reconstruction Team and civilian actors (nongovernmental organizations, district governors, local constructors) in Baghlan, Afghanistan. These partnerships include explosives removal, power plant construction and police training courses. The article shows that civil-military cooperation processes follow six successive steps: decision to cooperate, partner selection, design, implementation, transfer of tasks and responsibilities, and evaluation. It is concluded that there is a lack of unambiguous and useful military guidelines regarding civil-military cooperation; the military are often unaware of other actors operating in the area and their programs, cooperation is frequently supplybased rather than demand-driven, and many military personnel involved in civil-military cooperation have little experience with and training in the subject.
This article discusses what an IR and peacebuilding praxis derived from the everyday might entail. It examines the insights of a number of literatures which contribute to a discussion of the dynamics of the everyday. The enervation of agency and the repoliticisation of peacebuilding is its objective. It charts how local agency has led to resistance and hybrid forms of peace despite the overwhelming weight of the liberal peace project. In some aspects this may be complementary to the latter and commensurate with the liberal state, but in other aspects the everyday points beyond the liberal peace.
The “liberal peacekeeping” is undergoing a crisis of legitimacy at the level of the everyday in post-conflict environments. In many such environments; different groups often locally constituted perceive it to be ethically bankrupt, subject to double standards, coercive and conditional, acultural, unconcerned with social welfare, and unfeeling and insensitive towards its subjects. It is tied to Western and liberal conceptions of the state, to institutions, and not to the local. Its post-Cold War moral capital, based upon its more emancipatory rather than conservative claims, has been squandered as a result, and its basic goal of a liberal social contract undermined. Certainly, since 9/11, attention has been diverted into other areas and many, perhaps promising peace processes have regressed. This has diverted attention away from a search for refinements, alternatives, for hybrid forms of peace, or for empathetic strategies through which the liberal blueprint for peace might coexist with alternatives. Yet from these strategies a post-liberal peace might emerge via critical research agendas for peacebuilding and for policymaking, termed here, eirenist. This opens up a discussion of an everyday and critical policies for peacebuilding.
A critical examination of the effort to build a liberal peace since 1999 in East Timor illustrates that to a large degree the liberal peace model has failed the East Timorese people. There are two aspects to this: the first is the failure to construct a social contract between society and its institutions of governance. This is related to the broader issue of the social legitimacy of, and contract with, international actors derived from society and its complex groupings. The second is the failure, at least in the transitional period, to respond to the experiences of everyday life and welfare requirements of the new state’s citizens.
The article argues that the demand for local ownership in externally funded conflict transformation projects is counterproductive, if it is seen as a concrete project objective. Nevertheless, the demand has an important function as policy ideal, pointing to the necessity for change in present international cooperation. Instead of aiming towards the impossible goal of literal “local ownership” of a foreign-funded project, which by definition inscribes the roles of donor and beneficiary, the focus should be on the nature of the relationship between the donors and the beneficiaries. It is within this relationship that power is or is not shared and that the equality of the partners may or may not be realised. The concept of “learning sites” can be used as a framework to counter asymmetrical relationships and develop a more equal partnership between “insiders” and “outsiders” in international peacebuilding work.
Written from the dual perspective of scholar and practitioner Rich qualitative and quantitative data-set Innovative conceptual framework Democratic Peacebuilding examines the evolution of international peacebuilding since the cold war, identifying the factors that limit the progress of international actors to institutionalize democratic authority and the rule of law in war-shattered societies. It gives particular attention to Afghanistan’s Bonn Agreement process (2001-2005) and post-Bonn period (2006-2009), in which the country’s multiple, competing forms of authority (e.g., religious leaders, tribal elders, militia commanders, and technocrats) challenged efforts to create “modern” forms of political authority rooted in democratic norms and the rule of law. Despite the significant risks involved, this volume argues that the institutionalization of democratic legal authority can create the conditions and framework necessary to mediate competing domestic interests and to address the root causes of a conflict peacefully. At the same time, one overlooked problem of international peacebuilding stems from the divergent conceptions, between international officials and the local population, of authority and its sources of legitimacy. By helping a conflict-affected society reconcile the inherent tensions between competing forms of authority, international peacebuilders can contribute to improved conditions for governance and a reduction in intra-state political violence. Due to high expenditures in a period of global economic uncertainty and frustrations in Afghanistan and elsewhere, democratization as an approach to conflict management and resolution is in retreat in some influential policy circles. But it is only a deepening of democracy, rather than lowering the metrics for progress and conditions for exit, that will determine whether fragile states are placed on a viable course toward stability and greater self-sufficiency.
This essay examines the transitional periods following peace agreements and leading to elections and new constitutions. It discusses the advantages of gradually expanding political participation during these periods, despite the arguments of several scholars that political liberalization in the absence of strong state institutions carries significant risks. The article argues that political participation in transitional periods may be expanded through inclusive elite consultations on issues such as elections, vetting of institutions and new constitutions, and through wider national dialogue efforts including civil society. The essay recognizes the risks of premature elections, but argues that the goal of reforming state institutions cannot be achieved in the absence of a national political process. This argument relies on the insights of the constitution-making literature, namely that lasting institutions tend to result from lengthy and inclusive constitution-making processes. It also relies on the civil war settlement literature according to which belligerents need credible guarantees that their interests will be protected in the post-agreement period before laying down their arms. The essay argues that guaranteed inclusion in the transitional process and influence over the outcome of the transition offers such assurances to former belligerents that their interests will be respected in the new political reality.
With conditions created by Western colonialism and the dynamics of the Cold War bipolar global rule, the inability of governments to rise beyond corrupt and imbalance political order, and, hence, the resurgence of ethnic, religious, and ideological identity consciousness and identification, Africa has been a bleeding Continent since the end of the colonial era. Contemporary Africa?s conflicts are intrastate, with many protracted. This paper argues that to deal adequately with such conflicts there is a need for an inner-oriented, indigenous-based, organic, and long-term sustainable nonviolent process of conflict transformation and peacebuilding aimed at constructive holistic change. It demonstrates that this is core to the peacebuilding paradigm Lederach develops and so apt for dealing with today?s Africa?s conflicts.
This article examines the international community’s commitment, since the December 2001 Bonn Agreement, to build democratic institutions and practices at national and local levels in Afghanistan. The tensions between democracy promotion activities and the statebuilding exigencies of political stabilization are identified through an examination of the 2005 elections and creation of the National Assembly, Provincial Councils, and Community Development Councils. The analysis demonstrates the existence of multiple, competing agendas in Afghanistan, embodied in contradictory elements found in those institutions. Policy recommendations are advanced for forging a coherent statebuilding agenda that can garner the legitimacy needed to complete the important transition signalled by the Interim-Afghanistan National Development Strategy and the Afghanistan Compact, concluded in January 2006 in London.
Peacebuilding activities in conflict-prone and post-conflict countries are based upon the assumption that effective, preferably liberal, states form the greatest prospect for a stable international order, and that failing or conflict-prone states represent a threat to international security. Peacebuilding is therefore a part of the security agenda. This has brought obvious benefits, most obviously much-needed resources, aid and capacity-building to conflict-prone countries in the form of international assistance, which has contributed to a decline in intrastate conflicts. However, there are a number of negative implications to the securitization of peacebuilding. This article considers the implications of this, and concludes that it is difficult to mediate between conventional and critical views of peacebuilding since they are premised upon quite different assumptions regarding what peacebuilding is and what it should be.
Since South Africa’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC), a therapeutic moral order has become one of the dominant frameworks within which states attempt to deal with a legacy of violent conflict. As a consequence, the grammar of trauma, suffering, repression, denial, closure, truth-revelation, and catharsis has become almost axiomatic to postconflict state-building. The rise of the postconflict therapeutic framework is tied, ineluctably, to the global proliferation of amnesty agreements. This article examines the emergence and application of two therapeutic truisms that have gained political credence in postconflict contexts since the work of the TRC. The first of these is that war-torn societies are traumatized and require therapeutic management if conflict is to be ameliorated. The second, and related truism, is that one of the tasks of the postconflict state is to attend to the psychiatric health of its citizens and the nation as a whole. The article shows how, and to what effect, these truisms coalesce powerfully at the site of postconflict national reconciliation processes. It argues that the discourse of therapy provides a radically new mode of state legitimation. It is the language through which new state institutions, primarily truth commissions, attempt to acknowledge suffering, ameliorate trauma and simultaneously found political legitimacy. The article concludes by suggesting that, on a therapeutic understanding, postconflict processes of dealing with past violence justify nascent political orders on new grounds: not just because they can forcibly suppress conflict, or deliver justice and protect rights, but because they can cure people of the pathologies that are a potential cause of resurgent violence.
We have argued in Electing to Fight and other writings that an incomplete democratic transition increases the risk of international and civil war in countries that lack the institutional capacity to sustain democratic politics. The combination of increasing mass political participation and weak political institutions creates the motive and the opportunity for both rising and declining elites to play the nationalist card in an attempt to rally popular support against domestic and foreign rivals. Vipin Narang and Rebecca Nelson, in their critique of Electing to Fight, agree that incompletely democratizing countries with weak institutions may be at greater risk of civil war, but they are skeptical that this extends to international war except when opportunistic neighbors invade failing states. Whereas we argue that nationalism is a key causal mechanism linking incomplete democratization to both civil and international war, they conjecture that weak institutions and state failure are probably sufficient to explain why such countries may be at greater risk of armed conflict. In contrast, we have found that weak political institutions generally have little effect on a state’s risk of involvement in external war when considered separately from incomplete democratization. We welcome the opportunity to advance this important debate by highlighting relevant portions of our previous research and summarizing some new findings on international and civil wars. Support for our argument rests on statistical tests and extensive case studies that trace causal processes in detail. We have presented statistical results showing the greater likelihood of war involvement for incompletely democratizing states with weak political institutions between 1816 and 1992, the greater propensity of democratizing states to engage in militarized interstate disputes, and the increased risk of civil war in incompletely democratizing states. We have also published case studies of all of the democratizing great powers since the French Revolution, all the democratizing initiators of interstate war in our statistical study, all the post-Communist states, paired comparisons of postcolonial states, and several wars involving democratizing states in the 1990s. Since we published Electing to Fight in 2005, elections have heightened identity politics and fueled cross-border violence in weakly institutionalized regimes in Georgia, Iraq, Lebanon, and the Palestinian territories. To try to advance the debate, we will address the main points on which Narang and Nelson have criticized our evidence and methods, and then we will discuss issues for further research.
This article is interested in the interface between internationally supported peace operations and local approaches to peace that may draw on traditional, indigenous and customary practice. It argues that peace (and security, development and reconstruction) in societies emerging from violent conflict tends to be a hybrid between the external and the local. The article conceptualizes how this hybrid or composite peace is constructed and maintained. It proposes a four-part conceptual model to help visualize the interplay that leads to hybridized forms of peace. Hybrid peace is the result of the interplay of the following: the compliance powers of liberal peace agents, networks and structures; the incentivizing powers of liberal peace agents, networks and structures; the ability of local actors to resist, ignore or adapt liberal peace interventions; and the ability of local actors, networks and structures to present and maintain alternative forms of peacemaking.
This article draws out the contradictions in the liberal peace that have become apparent in post-Taliban state-building in Afghanistan. In particular, it focuses on how warlords have been incorporated into the government. The government has been unable to achieve a monopoly of violence and has relied on the support of some powerful militia commanders to secure itself. This raises a number of practical and ethical questions for the liberal peace. The focus of the article is on warlordism, rather than in providing detailed narrative accounts of particular warlords. The case illustrates the difficulty of extending the liberal peace in the context of an ongoing insurgency.
The post-Cold War has witnessed enormous levels of western peacekeeping, peacemaking and reconstruction intervention in societies emerging from war. These western-led interventions are often called ‘liberal peacebuilding’ or ‘liberal interventionism’, or statebuilding, and have attracted considerable controversy. In this study, leading proponents and critics of the liberal peace and contemporary post-war reconstruction assess the role of the United States, European Union and other actors in the promotion of the liberal peace, and of peace more generally. Key issues, including transitional justice and the acceptance/rejection of the liberal peace in African states are also considered. The failings of the liberal peace (most notably in Iraq and Afghanistan, but also in other locations) have prompted a growing body of critical literature on the motivations, mechanics and consequences of the liberal peace. This volume brings together key protagonists from both sides of the debate to produce a cutting edge, state of the art discussion of one the main trends in contemporary international relations.
This paper looks at how a certain understanding of states is affecting the types of activities emphasised in state-building agendas. It proposes an approach to understanding states and their roles, drawing on ideas of institutions and their rules as a means of mediating power, and applies this to a discussion of two state-building initiatives at the subnational level in Afghanistan. It shows how resistance to attempts to impose bureaucratic rules, coupled with the international community’s failure to understand the role of states in mediating power, has contributed to the failure to date of interventions to reform local government. This has directly affected reconstruction and stability in Afghanistan.
If the West loses in Afghanistan and its region, the most important reason will be that we are pursuing several different goals simultaneously, most of which are in contradiction to the others. Western governments need to choose between these goals, and co-ordinate a strategy in pursuit of the most desirable and achievable ones. The creation of a democratic Afghanistan needs to be recognised as a hopeless fantasy. Instead, the West should imitate the Soviet Union in the late 1980s and concentrate on creating an effective military force that can survive Western withdrawal and continue to fight the Taleban. In the meantime, something to be avoided at all costs is the further destabilisation of Pakistan, since Pakistan in the end constitutes a far greater potential threat to the region, the West and the world than does Afghanistan.
The victory by the Sri Lankan government over the LTTE in 2009?apparently ended over 25 years of civil war. However, the ramifications of the government’s counter-insurgency go far beyond Sri Lanka’s domestic politics. The military campaign against the LTTE poses a significant challenge to many of the liberal norms that inform contemporary models of international peace-building – the so-called ‘liberal peace’. This article suggests that Sri Lanka’s attempts to justify a shift from peaceful conflict resolution to counter-insurgency relied on three main factors: the flawed nature of the peace process, which highlighted wider concerns about the mechanisms and principles of international peace processes; the increased influence of Rising Powers, particularly China, in global governance mechanisms, and their impact on international norms related to conflict management; and the use by the government of a discourse of counter-terrorism and counter-insurgency to limit international censure. The article concludes that the Sri Lankan case may suggest a growing contestation of international peace-building norms, and the emergence of a legitimated ‘illiberal peace’.
The paradox of attempting to (re)construct state institutions without considering the socio-political cohesion of societies recurs throughout the world, most notably today in the Middle East, Africa and the Balkans. This essay tries to shed some light on the debate around the concepts of state and nation-building. Drawing on a sociological understanding of the modern nation-state, it contends that it is impossible to conceive of statebuilding as a process separate from nation-building. This essay identifies two different schools of thought in the discussion concerning the statebuilding process, each of which reflects different sociological understandings of the state. The first one, an ‘institutional approach’ closely related to the Weberian conception of the state, focuses on the importance of institutional reconstruction and postulates that statebuilding activities do not necessarily require a concomitant nation-building effort. The second, a ‘legitimacy approach’ influenced by Durkheimian sociology, recognizes the need to consolidate central state institutions, but puts more emphasis on the importance of socio-political cohesion in the process. Building on this second approach and demonstrating its relevance in contemporary statebuilding, this article concludes with a discussion of recent statebuilding attempts and the ways external actors can effectively contribute to statebuilding processes.
This essay concludes a study of how the international community has approached the security sector in six countries where there has been severe conflict leading to significant international engagement. Various factors are identified as being critical in shaping the outcome of (re)construction efforts, and they are evaluated from several perspectives. External actors have tended to take a limited and unbalanced approach to the security sector, focusing on building the efficiency of statutory security actors, and neglecting the development of managerial and governance capacity. While programmes tended to become more effective after the first major post-Cold War effort was undertaken in Haiti in 1994, the situation in Afghanistan may point to a reversal of this trend.
Legitimacy is recognized as critical to the success of international administrations in their efforts to build and promote peace, stability and welfare in post-conflict territories. Nonetheless, scholarship on statebuilding is dominated by the managerial approach, which offers a top-down analysis of policies by international actors and their impact on local constituencies. With its focus on the grass roots, the individual and a multiplicity of concerns, a human security perspective on international administration can identify and address their legitimacy gap, resulting in strategies for more effective conflict resolution. The argument is illustrated by analysis of the Ahtisaari process and plan for Kosovo’s final status.
This essay explores the interdependence between statebuilding, narcotics and conflict through an analysis of interviews and a survey conducted, in the spring of 2005, in the Laghman and Nangarhar provinces of Afghanistan. Rural Afghanistan is characterized by weak conflict-processing mechanisms, combined with a high propensity towards the escalation of violence. State-sponsored institutions for conflict processing hardly exist, and donor attempts to prop up traditional institutions, such as the village shura, as a substitute for local government have failed to produce tangible results. Farmers widely acknowledge the benefits of opium as one of the few available cash crops. As a result, competition over scarce land and propensity for violence are affected indirectly by the drug economy. The study concludes with a criticism of current poppy eradication efforts. Under an informal eradication contract, provincial leaders are induced to comply with the request of the central government to reduce opium cultivation, in exchange for increased political autonomy and the promise of donor funds.
International attention has turned in recent years towards the critical, some would argue decisive, role that economic factors play in driving and perpetuating contemporary violent conflicts. A key aspect of this debate is the behaviour and impact of the private sector. Understandably, the discussions (at least on the NGO side) have largely centred on Transnational Corporations (TNCs), particularly those from the extractive sector and most often in the context of their negative impact on conflict. The well documented cases of Colombia and Nigeria, amongst others, illustrate the importance both of understanding these impacts and of acting to ensure the obvious potential benefits of natural resources accrue to societies as a whole rather than privileged elites. However, framing the ‘business and conflict’ debate in such a one-dimensional manner risks ignoring not only the immense diversity of the private sector but also the potentially constructive role businesses of various sizes and types can play in addressing conflict. It is one of the ironies of conflict transformation theory and practice that despite the evidence that local business has an important part to play, and a strong interest, in supporting peacebuilding initiatives, significantly less effort has been directed towards analysing and facilitating its role than for that of TNCs. This article aims to start addressing this gap by exploring four key questions: why to engage local business, how to do it, what form engagement can take, and with whom it is most likely to succeed. We base our propositions on involvement in and analysis of a substantive number of research, advocacy and consultancy projects. While we work from a broad collection of examples of potential business roles in conflict and peacebuilding, the cases are illustrative, and more systematic research and testing of hypotheses will be necessary.
Somalia is, in short, a nightmare for its own citizens and a source of grave concern for the rest of the world. Ironically, however, the international community bears much of the responsibility for creating the monster it now fears. Previous attempts to help Somalia have foundered because they have been driven by the international community’s agenda, rather than by Somali realities. The UN, Western governments, and donors have tried repeatedly to build a strong central governmentthe kind of entity that they are most comfortable dealing within defiance of local sociopolitical dynamics and regional history. Not only have these ill-judged efforts met with inevitable failure, but they have also endangered the traditional social structures that have historically kept order. Instead of repeatedly trying to foist a Western style top-down state structure on Somalia’s deeply decentralized and fluid society, the international community needs to work with the country’s long-standing traditional institutions to build a government from the bottom up. Such an approach might prove to be not only Somalia’s salvation but also a blueprint for rescuing other similarly splintered states.
The need for an accurate understanding of the environment into which peace- and capacity-building missions are deployed cannot be overstated. Suppositions about the mission environment inform every facet of an intervention’s design and implementation, in addition to expectations surrounding success. Yet this critical element continues to be misunderstood by those most in need of an accurate grasp, a condition which severely undermines the war to peace transition. Rather than continuing to assume that recipient states are states in the Western sense of the term, we must instead focus our energies on how best to enable sustainable peace in the hybrid political orders which do in fact constitute these troubled places. After setting out the largely unrecognised characteristics of recipient societies, the article explores alternative forms of assistance with promise to complement such realities.
Under what conditions do democracies emerge and consolidate? Recent theories suggest that inequality is among the leading determinants of both democratization and consolidation. By contrast, this article argues that inequality harms consolidation but has no net effect on democratization. The author shows that the existing theories that link inequality to democratization suffer from serious limitations: (1) they are useful only for understanding transitions from below and thus do not apply to many other transitions (that is, those from above); (2) even for democratization from below, their predictions are unlikely to hold, since inequality actually has two opposite effects; and (3) they ignore collective action problems, which reduces their explanatory power. However, these objections do not affect the relationship between inequality and consolidation. In particular, while inequality has two opposite effects on the probability of transition to democracy, it unambiguously increases the probability of transition away from democracy. This article conducts the most comprehensive empirical test to date of the relationship between inequality and democracy. It finds no support for the main democratization theories. Contrary to what they predict, estimation suggests neither a monotonic negative nor an inverted U-shaped relationship. Yet inequality increases the probability of backsliding from democracy to dictatorship.
Peacekeeping has been a significant part of Australia’s overseas military engagement since the end of the Second World War. Yet it is a part of the country’s history that has been largely neglected until the 1990s, and even since then interest has been slow to develop. In the last sixty years, between 30,000 and 40,000 Australian military personnel and police have served in more than 50 peacekeeping missions in at least 27 different conflicts. This insightful, engaging and superbly-edited volume approaches Australian peacekeeping from four angles: its history, its agencies, some personal reflections, and its future. Contributors discuss the distinction between peacekeeping and war-fighting, the importance of peacekeeping in terms of public policy, the problems of multinational command, and the specialist contributions of the military, civilian police, mine-clearers, weapons inspectors and diplomats.
Post-Soviet, post-conflict Tajikistan is an under-studied and poorly understood case in conflict studies literature. Since 2000, this Central Asian state has seen major political violence end, countrywide order emerge and the peace agreement between the parties of the 1990s civil war hold. Superficially, Tajikistan appears to be a case of successful international intervention for liberal peacebuilding, yet the Tajik peace is characterised by authoritarian governance. Via discourse analysis and extensive fieldwork, including participant-observation with international organizations, the author examines how peacebuilding is understood and practised. The book challenges received wisdom that peacebuilding is a process of democratisation or institutionalisation, showing how interventions have inadvertently served to facilitate an increasingly authoritarian peace and fostered popular accommodation and avoidance strategies. Chapters investigate assistance to political parties and elections, the security sector and community development, and illustrate how transformative aims are thwarted whilst ‘success’ is simulated for an audience of international donors. At the same time the book charts the emergence of a legitimate order with properties of authority, sovereignty and livelihoods.
Peacebuilding is a contested concept which gains meaning as it is practised. While academic and policy-relevant elaboration of the concept is of interest to international experts, interpretations of peacebuilding in the Central Asian arena may depart immensely from those envisaged within the western-dominated ‘international community’. This article opens up the dimensions and contingent possibilities of “peacebuilding” through an investigation of two alternative approaches found in the context of Tajikistan. It makes the critique that peacebuilding represents one contextually grounded basic discourse. In the case of Central Asia, and in particular post-conflict Tajikistan, at least two other basic discourses have been adopted by parties to the post-Soviet setting: elite “mirostroitelstvo” (Russian: peacebuilding) and popular ‘tinji’ (Tajik: wellness/peacefulness). Based largely on fieldwork conducted in Tajikistan between 2003 and 2005, the argument here is that none of these three discourses is merely an artificial or cynical construct but that each has a certain symbolic and normative value. Consequently, a singular definition of Tajik ‘peacebuilding’ proves elusive as practices adapt to the relationships between multiple discourses and identities in context. The article concludes that ‘peacebuilding’ is a complex and intersubjective process of change entailing the legitimation of new relationships of power.
The role of UN peacekeeping missions has expanded beyond the traditional tasks of peacekeeping to include a wide range of political, economic, and humanitarian activities. While such expansion indicates an improved understanding of the complexities and challenges of post-conflict contexts, it also raises questions about whether UN peacekeeping missions are equipped to handle peacebuilding tasks. Evidence from a study of the peacekeeping mission in Sierra Leone suggests they are not. This article argues that peacekeeping missions are a poor choice for peacebuilding given their limited mandates, capacity, leverage, resources and duration. Peacekeepers should focus on peacekeeping, by which they can lay the foundation for peacebuilding. Peacebuilding should be the primary task of national governments and their populations.
Considerable effort in recent years has gone into rebuilding fragile states. However, the debates over the effectiveness of such state-building exercises have tended to neglect that capacity building and the associated good governance programmes which comprise contemporary state building are essentially about transforming the state â€” meaning the ways in which political power is produced and reproduced. State capacity is now often presented as the missing link required for generating positive development outcomes and security. However, rather than being an objective and technical measure, capacity building constitutes a political and ideological mechanism for operationalising projects of state transnationalisation. The need to question prevailing notions of state capacity has become apparent in light of the failure of many state-building programmes. Such programmes have proven difficult to implement, and implementation has rarely achieved the expected development turnarounds or alleviation of violent conflict in those countries. In this article it is argued that, to identify the potential trajectories of such interventions, we must understand the role state building currently plays in domestic politics, and in particular, the ways in which processes of state transformation affect the development of different and often conflicting power bases within the state. This argument is examined using examples from the Australian-led Regional Assistance Mission to Solomon Islands.
State failure is often seen as due to endogenous factors, rather than systemic ones; correspondingly, the idea that states can be built by supporting internal processes and institutions alone is prevalent in policy documents and in some of the literature on state-building. This paper calls both assumptions into question. I demonstrate that three factors were important external preconditions of historical state formation: (1) effective states and sustainable regional security, which is expressed on an inter-state as well as a sub-state level, requires a region-wide creation of effective structures of state; (2) effective states and effective inter-state security require well-functioning states systems; (3) effective states require regional acceptance of the process of state-building. Analysing three contemporary countries and regions, Somalia/the Horn of Africa, Afghanistan/Central Asia and Namibia/ south-western Africa, the article concludes that state-building is substantially facilitated where these three contextual factors are in place. The absence of these external factors in the regions where Afghanistan and Somalia are located illuminate the depth of the problems facing these countries. In these cases regional structures are preconditions of state-building.
This article examines the military aspects of international state-building efforts in Afghanistan through the lens of critical theory. It outlines the conventional approach to state-building, as it has evolved in recent decades, and briefly describes the emerging reflexive critique of that approach developed by state-building scholars grounded in critical theory. It then applies the reflexive critique to the Afghan state-building project, an exercise that substantiates key aspects of the critique but also reveals a divergence between the broadly conventional approach taken in Kabul and the more adaptive approaches of many practitioners at the province and district levels. It concludes with a discussion of the potential implications of this convergence for theory and practice of state-building in Afghanistan and beyond.
This article focuses on the role of international aid donors in Afghanistan since the signing of the Bonn Agreement in 2001. Specifically, it explores the scope and utility of peace conditionalities as an instrument for peace consolidation in the context of a fragile war-to-peace transition. Geo-strategic and institutional concerns have generally led to an unconditional approach to assistance by international actors. It is argued that large inflows of unconditional aid risk re-creating the structural conditions that led to the outbreak of conflict. Aid conditionalities need to be re-conceptualized as aid-for-peace bargains rather than as bribes for security. Some forms of conditionality are necessary in order to rebuild the social contract in Afghanistan. This finding has wider relevance for aid donors and they should reconsider orthodox development models in â€˜fragile stateâ€™ settings. Rather than seeing conditionalities and ownership as two ends of a policy spectrum, the former may be a necessary instrument for achieving the latter.
The past two decades have witnessed the proliferation of comprehensive international missions of peacebuilding and reconstruction, aimed not simply at bringing conflict to an end but also at preventing its recurrence. Recent missions, ranging from relatively modest involvement to highly complex international administrations, have generated a debate about the rights and duties of international actors to reconstruct postconflict states. In view of the recent growth of such missions, and the serious challenges and crises that have plagued them, we seek in this article to address some of the gaps in the current literature and engage in a critical analysis of the moral purposes and dilemmas of reconstruction. More specifically, we construct a map for understanding and evaluating the different ethical imperatives advanced by those who attempt to rebuild war-torn societies. In our view, such a mapping exercise is a necessary step in any attempt to build a normative defence of postconflict reconstruction. The article proceeds in two stages: first, we present the various rationales for reconstruction offered by international actors, and systematize these into four different “logics”; second, we evaluate the implications and normative dilemmas generated by each logic.
In particular, this article focuses on the potential contributions of civil society actors for peacebuilding and conflict transformation.1 Some of the central questions addressed in this text are: What types of activities do international and transnational NGOs undertake in order to influence international politics in a way that contributes to stable peace and coping with global challenges? What potential do actors from civil society offer for war-to-peace transitions? What problems and dilemmas are faced in the development of civil society in war-torn societies? What are the limitations of civil society’s contributions and how does it relate to state-building? Finally, how does any of this impact on theoretical conceptualisations of the term “civil society”? By way of elaborating these questions, the second section of this article discusses various terms and definitions linked to debates about civil society. The third section gives a general overview of NGO activities at the international and regional level. The fourth section presents a critical assessment of their roles and the fifth section deals with their impact and legitimacy. The sixth section addresses the potential contributions of civil society in war-torn societies and post-conflict peacebuilding, with specific reference to the last 10 years of experience in the Balkans. The seventh section contextualises the development of civil society in relation to the challenges of state-building and investigates the theoretical implications of this relationship for conceptualising the term “civil society”. The eighth section draws some central conclusions, makes policy recommendations and identifies the needs for further research.
In the last decade of the 20th century 43 countries have been considered as countries emerging from violent conflicts. Most of them were affected by intra-state wars and civil wars, and most of these belong to the category of the poorest (“less developed countries” according to criteria of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). An extraordinary high percentage was located in the African continent. The international community pledged more than one hundred billion dollars in aid to war-torn societies. These were designed to build up infrastructure, to persuade formerly warring parties to resolve conflict in a non-violent way and to contribute to economic development and participatory governance. Experts and political actors have stated that international agencies often used too narrowminded a concept in the past, reducing their activities to technical reconstruction after the end of violent conflict. A broader conceptualisation is needed to support the difficult long-term process of transformation from war to peace. This chapter gives an overview of the variety of tasks required to make post-conflict recovery successful in the sense of preventing further conflict and some tensions and dilemmas are identified and discussed.
The Centre for Non-violent Action was set up in autumn 1997 as the Sarajevo project office of the North German Bildungs- und Begegnungsstätte – KURVE Wustrow (Centre for Education and Networking in Nonviolent Action – KURVE Wustrow). Since then, CNA has conducted more than 30 training sessions, bringing together young people from different parts of the former Yugoslavia to study practical approaches to non-violent conflict transformation. CNA also aims to support local NGOs’ networking activities and advise them on general issues concerning NGO development. From the beginning the Berghof Research Center for Constructive Conflict Management has supported CNA’s work with supervision and advice. In January 1999, the CNA team also asked for Berghof’s support with the self-evaluation of its work. The purpose of this study is to take stock and clarify CNA’s approach. Within this framework, the obstacles and unresolved issues confronting peace work in Bosnia-Herzegovina – and, indeed, the Balkans in general – will be also outlined. The study is based on two sources: firstly on oral and written questions addressed to the CNA staff members and an evaluation of its Annual and Quarterly Reports; and secondly, structured interviews, carried out with graduates of the training programmes.
When a violent conflict ends, the question of what should be done next is often extremely difficult to answer comprehensively. Several moral theories aspire to help people think and act reasonably and constructively in such circumstances, guiding them toward the formulation of potential ways forward by identifying, clarifying, and perhaps ordering the issues at stake, and undertaking a principled consideration of the possible practical consequences of these formulations. In this article, I consider how one body of moral theorizing in particular—just war theory—may be equipped to contribute to the morality of postconflict reconstruction. Specifically, I wish to consider whether the ostensibly most robust or attractive form of jus post bellum is vulnerable to this ‘‘action-guiding’’ problem. I will illustrate the problem via the notion of a ‘‘just occupation’’ of a defeated unjust aggressor by just victors after a just war. (‘‘Humanitarian intervention,’’ insofar as it also entails a form of occupation, can therefore give rise to a similar internal contradiction.) If the vulnerability charge stands, jus post bellum could thus fall foul of Alex Bellamy’s contention that its addition to just war theory may in fact be seriously misguided. I am not mounting a wholesale rejection of jus post bellum. I will, in fact, propose a further set of action-guiding principles to jus post bellum in partial response to the problem I identify, and others might well follow once the theory is subjected to more extensive treatment. But I also suggest that what we should generally expect of jus post bellum in terms of its action-guiding potential needs significant further consideration.
Postconflict state reconstruction has become a priority of donors in Africa. Yet, externally sponsored reconstruction efforts have met with limited achievements in the region. This is partly due to three flawed assumptions on which reconstruction efforts are predicated. The first is that Western state institutions can be transferred to Africa. The poor record of past external efforts to construct and reshape African political and economic institutions casts doubts on the overly ambitious objectives of failed state reconstruction. The second flawed assumption is the mistaken belief in a shared understanding by donors and African leaders of failure and reconstruction. Donors typically misread the nature of African politics. For local elites, reconstruction is the continuation of war and competition for resources by new means. Thus their strategies are often inimical to the building of strong public institutions. The third flawed assumption is that donors are capable of rebuilding African states. Their ambitious goals are inconsistent with their financial, military, and symbolic means. Yet, African societies are capable of recovery, as Somaliland and Uganda illustrate. Encouraging indigenous state formation efforts and constructive bargaining between social forces and governments might prove a more fruitful approach for donors to the problem of Africa’s failed states.
Security sector reform (SSR) is a concept that is highly visible within policy and practice circles and that increasingly shapes international programmes for development assistance, security co-operation and democracy promotion. This paper examines the concept and practice of SSR using theories of the state and state formation within a historical-philosophical perspective. The paper recognises that the processes of SSR are highly laudable and present great steps forward towards more holistic conceptions of security and international development. However, the main argument of the paper is that we should be careful of having too high expectations of the possibility of SSR fulfilling its ambitious goals of creating states that are both stable and democratic and accountable. Instead, we should carefully determine what level of ambition is realistic for each specific project depending on local circumstances. A further argument of this paper is that legitimate order and functioning state structures are prerequisites and preconditions for successful democratisation and accountability reforms within the security sector.
This article compares Britain’s failed attempt at building a stable, liberal state in Iraq from 1914 to 1932 with the USA’s struggle to stabilise the country after regime change in April 2003. It sets out a template for endogenous state-building based on the evolution of the European state system. It then compares this to exogenous extra-European state-building after both World War I and the Cold War. It focuses on three key stages: the imposition of order, the move from coercive to administrative capacity and finally the evolution of a collective civic identity linked to the state. It is this process against which Iraqi state-building by the British in the 1920s and by the USA from 2003 onwards can be accurately judged to have failed. For both the British and American occupations, troop numbers were one of the central problems undermining the stability of Iraq. British colonial officials never had the resources to transform the despotic power deployed by the state into sustainable infrastructural capacity. Instead they relied on hakumat al tayarra (government by aircraft). The dependence upon air power led to the neglect of other state institutions, stunting the growth of infrastructural power and hence state legitimacy. The US occupation has never managed to impose despotic power, having failed to obtain a monopoly over the collective deployment of violence. Instead it has relied on ‘indigenisation,’ the hurried creation of a new Iraqi army. The result has been the security vacuum that dominates the south and centre of the country. The article concludes by suggesting that unsuccessful military occupations usually end after a change of government in the intervening country. This was the case for the British in May 1929 and may well be the case for the USA after the next presidential election in 2008.
This article describes the slow and uneven movement towards a more professional approach to nation-building. The post-cold war era is replete with instances where the United States found itself burdened by the challenges of nation-building in the wake of a successful military operation. American performance in the conduct of such missions improved slowly through the 1990s, but this trend was not sustained into the decade beginning in 2000. The article outlines what a more professional approach to peacebuilding would require, highlighting a hierarchy of tasks that flow in the following order: security, humanitarian relief, governance, economic stabilization, democratization and development.
In recent years, there have been concerted efforts to ensure that the different components of the international response to crisis-affected countries, whether conducted under the banner of the United Nations or not, are integrated in pursuit of a stated goal of comprehensive, durable, and just resolution of conflict. This includes a drive to purposefully make humanitarian assistance to victims, one of the principal forms of outside involvement in crisis situations, supportive of the “international community’s” political ambition. The implication of the coherence agenda is that meeting lifesaving needs is too limited in scope, and that the principles of impartiality, neutrality, and independence that have typically characterized humanitarian action should be set aside in order to harness aid to the “higher” goals of peace, security, and development.
The Australian Defence Force (ADF) is currently involved in peacebuilding operations in Timor-Leste and Solomon Islands; Australian government agencies remain engaged in reconstruction in post-conflict Bougainville (Papua New Guinea). Peacebuilding has been and will remain a major task for the ADF in the Pacific, as part of a larger governmental and aid response. The wider context for these commitments is the view that state incapacity or even failure is in prospect in parts of Australia’s immediate Pacific region. The causes of state failure include lack of a diversified economy, a dependence on exports of natural resources, a rapidly growing population, and poor education levels; a number of Pacific countries exhibit these characteristics. The conflict on Bougainville has been the most intractable in which Australian forces have been involved. The formation of Peace Monitoring Groups (largely composed of ADF personnel, but unarmed) engaged in weapons destruction, building trust and encouraging the eventual realisation of local autonomy was a major contribution to the peace process. The ADF experience of Timor-Leste dates from INTERFET. The need to redeploy peacekeeping troops in 2006 demonstrated that the existing peacebuilding program focused especially on security sector reform, while positive was still too narrow to address governance incapacity problems. From 2003 ADF elements have been central to the RAMSI reconstruction program in Solomon Islands. Though violence has largely been eradicated, the political crisis of 2006 demonstrated the need for the closest cooperation with the host government. These regional case studies show that peacebuilding is a complex task which requires engagement across all of the institutions of order and governance as well as with the wider society. Security sector reform remains a crucial area of peacebuilding in which military forces are inextricably involved. However, effective security reform depends ultimately upon the existence of governments that welcome, support, and own such reform.
Local peace initiatives have been introduced in post-conflict settings in aid of statebuilding processes. However, contradictions in such efforts that undermine the state become apparent in a development context when government institutions are, generally, functioning. Peacebuilding initiatives in the arid lands of Kenya are a good example of this. While they have proved successful in resolving conflicts at the local level, they challenge the state structure in three ways. First, some of their features run counter to the official laws of Kenya and jeopardize the separation of powers. Second, they pose a dilemma, since their success and legitimacy are based on grassroots leadership and local concepts of justice. Both can be at odds with democratic decision-making, inclusiveness and gender equity. Third, they provide yet another tool for abuse by politicians and other local leaders. This reveals a dilemma: aspects of peacebuilding can actually undermine a statebuilding endeavour.
Post-Conflict Peacebuilding comes at a critical time for post-conflict peacebuilding. Its rapid move towards the top of the international political agenda has been accompanied by added scrutiny, as the international community seeks to meet the multi-dimensional challenges of building a just and sustainable peace in societies ravaged by war. Beyond the strictly operational dimension, there is considerable ambiguity in the concepts and terminology used to discuss post-conflict peacebuilding. This ambiguity undermines efforts to agree on common understandings of how peace can be most effectively ‘built’, thereby impeding swift, coherent action. Accordingly, this lexicon aims to clarify and illuminate the multiple facets of post-conflict peacebuilding, by presenting its major themes and trends from an analytical perspective. To this end, the book opens with a general introduction on the concept of post-conflict peacebuilding, followed by twenty-six essays on its key elements (including capacity-building, conflict transformation, reconciliation, recovery, rule of law, security sector reform, and transitional justice). Written by international experts from a range of disciplines, including political science and international relations, international law, economics, and sociology, these essays cover the whole spectrum of post-conflict peacebuilding. In reflecting a diversity of perspectives the lexicon sheds light on many different challenges associated with post-conflict peacebuilding. For each key concept a generic definition is proposed, which is then expanded through discussion of three main areas: the meaning and origin of the concept; its content and essential components; and its means of implementation, including lessons learned from past practice.
The concept of security is the driver for peacebuilding and development, as well as social and political change in post-conflict countries. A review and analysis of three key government documents indicates that, in Sierra Leone, securitisation discourse is embedded in both the political economy discourse of the state and in the popular imagination. The Security Sector Review equates security and peace while the country’s Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper sees security as a driver for change. The 2006 Work Plan of the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Food Security illustrates the extent to which the work of ministries is security-based. Sierra Leone’s political economy of post-conflict peacebuilding favours macro-economic security that is to trickle down into social and political peace. Discourse analysis shows that, framed within security parameters, post-conflict peacebuilding is meant to have an effect of ‘trickle-down peace’ that in effect constrains transformation with the potential for facilitating conditions for a return to conflict.
The UN has developed a series of internal ‘integration reforms’ that aim to increase its capacity to integrate its post-conflict efforts through a single coherent strategy, and ultimately to support sustainable war-to-peace transitions. This article argues that these reforms could be redesigned to take into account the causes of the (dis)integration, incoherence and complexity of UN post-conflict interventions, to make them more comprehensive and more realistic. While some degree of both strategic coherence and operational integration may be necessary to improve the effectiveness of UN post-conflict interventions, these are inadequate without an increased conflict-sensitivity in each UN entity involved in post-conflict interventions. For the whole to be greater than the sum of the parts, the parts must make a significant contribution to the whole.
There is increasing consensus among scholars and policy analysts that successful peacebuilding can occur only in the context of capable state institutions. But how can legitimate and sustainable states best be established in the aftermath of civil wars? And what role should international actors play in supporting the vital process? Addressing these questions, this state-of-the-art volume explores the core challenges involved in institutionalizing postconflict states. The combination of thematic chapters and in-depth case studies covers the full range of the most vexing and diverse problems confronting domestic and international actors seeking to build states while building peace. Case studies include: Somalia, Palestine, Bosnia, East Timor / Timor-Leste, Afghanistan, Liberia
Reflecting a growing awareness of the need to integrate security and development agendas in the field of conflict management, the authors of this original volume focus on the case of the Pacific Islands. In the process, they also reveal the sociopolitical diversity, cultural richness, and social resilience of a little-known region. Their work not only offers insight into the societies discussed, but also speaks to the realities of political community and statebuilding efforts throughout the developing world.
On the eve of the invasion of Iraq, President G.W. Bush argued that if setting up democracy in Japan and Germany after WW II was successful, then it should also be successful in Iraq. This book provides a detailed comparison of the reconstruction of Japan from 1945 to 1952 with the current reconstruction of Iraq, evaluating the key factors affecting the success or failure of such projects. The book seeks to understand why American officials believed that extensive social reengineering aiming at seeding democracy and economic development is replicable, through identifying factors explaining the outcome of U.S.-led post-conflict reconstruction projects. The analysis reveals that in addition to the effective use of material resources of power, the outcome of reconstruction projects depends on a variety of other intertwined factors, and Bridoux provides a new analytical framework relying on a Gramscian concept of power to develop a greater understanding of these factors, and the ultimate success or failure of these reconstruction projects.
International law can create great expectations in those seeking to rebuild societies that have been torn apart by conflict. For outsiders, international law can mandate or militate against intervention, bolstering or undermining the legitimacy of intervention. International legal principles promise equality, justice and human rights. Yet international law’s promises are difficult to fulfil. This volume of essays investigates the phenomenon of post-conflict state-building and the engagement of international law in this enterprise. It draws together original essays by scholars and practitioners who consider the many roles international law can play in rehabilitating societies after conflict. The essays explore troubled zones across the world, from Afghanistan to Africa’s Great Lakes region, and from Timor-Leste to the Balkans. They identify a range of possibilities for international law in tempering, regulating, legitimating or undermining efforts to rebuild post-conflict societies.
Peacebuilding supports the emergence of stable political community in states and regions struggling with a legacy of violent conflict. This then raises the question of what political community might mean in the state in question. International peacebuilding operations have answered that question in terms of the promotion of conventional state-building along the lines of the Western Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) model as the best path out of post-conflict state fragility and towards sustainable development and peace. This article argues for peacebuilding beyond notions of the liberal peace and constructions of the liberal state. Rather than thinking in terms of fragile states, it might be theoretically and practically more fruitful to think in terms of hybrid political orders, drawing on the resilience embedded in the communal life of societies within so-called fragile regions of the global South. This re-conceptualization opens new options for peacebuilding and for state formation as building political community.
The security situation in Liberia is currently quite good, and at a glance the peacebuilding process seems to be moving ahead. However, the root causes of the conflict have not been adequately addressed, but have in fact become more interlinked in the aftermath of the civil war. Instead of addressing local perceptions of insecurity the international community made plans for Liberia without considering the context in which reforms were to be implemented. The peace in post-conflict Liberia is therefore still fragile and the international presence is regarded as what secures the peace. Still, the UN is supposed to start its full withdrawal in 2010, indicating that the international community will leave the country without addressing the root causes of conflict.
Since the end of the Liberian civil war in August 2003 the international community has been “making plans” for Liberia. However, it rarely questioned whether these plans were in accordance with the political and economic logic of the peace agreement and the subsequent transitional government. The consequence was that corruption continued and a much more intrusive economic management plan was established. The Governance and Economic Management Assistance Programme is supposed to combat corruption and facilitate good governance, but it also limits the range of policy options for the new democratically elected government of Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf. The irony is that the best and most legitimate government that Liberia has ever had is subject to stronger external control than any of its predecessors. The probability that this scheme will remain sustainable when donor interest shifts elsewhere is low, and what is needed is a more pragmatic approach that draws a wider segment of Liberian society into anti-corruption management and creates checks and balances between them.
This report addresses some of the deep confusion that still surrounds the term reconciliation, and its practice in post-violence peacebuilding. Despite its generally acknowledged importance, there remains great disagreement over what reconciliation actually means and, in particular, how it relates to other concepts and processes, such as justice, peacebuilding, democratisation and political development. It reviews some of the ongoing debates, from scholarship as well as policy and practice, which highlight the disputed nature of the term, and offer a modest framework for reducing the confusion to more manageable levels. The report also examines its complex relationship to two key concepts: justice, and forgiveness. The paper builds on, and pushes further, some of the thoughts first presented in an earlier work, Reconciliation After Violent Conflict: A Handbook, produced for the International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance (IDEA), (Bloomfield et al. 2003).
The “international community” is not the only actor engaged in statebuilding processes; contemporaneously with external intervention, at national and local levels of non-Western societies other actors are also engaged in struggles to establish their own visions of a state. The results are ambiguous: the states built tend to be hybrid, combining formal modern state facades with informal ways of functioning. This essay introduces the Special Issue by outlining the importance of the analysis of the dynamics of state-formation: the deformation that statebuilding undergoes in the process of its implementation. This framework can provide new insights into the limits of statebuilding by highlighting how the negotiation processes accompanying any attempt at statebuilding are shaped to a great extent by non-Western states’ and societies’ specific embeddedness in global structures. These states are currently subject to deepening dynamics of internationalization and informalization which, despite a growing formal convergence of state institutions with Western models, structurally limit the probabilities of ensuing liberal-democratic state-formation.
This chapter will focus on the practical experience of traditional relief and development projects working on complex emergencies in the field of community development. As the authors explore the nexus between conflict transformation on the one hand and participatory and empowerment approaches on the other, they will critically assess the potential of common empowerment approaches within community building not only to avoid doing harm but also to make a substantive contribution to conflict transformation at the local level. The empirical base of the chapter lies within participatory research and in the experiences of bilateral and multilateral development cooperation in the war-torn areas of Sri Lanka. Sections II and III will explore recent aspects of the conflict transformation discourse, paying particular attention to conclusions that might be drawn concerning the role of development aid in complex emergencies. Sections IV and V introduce some common participatory and empowerment approaches within the field of community development, delineating their theoretical objectives as well as their practical implementation. Section VI critically discusses possible spaces of action, as well as constraints, dilemmas and ambivalences for the facilitation of empowerment processes through development aid within complex emergencies. The authors conclude with future prospects on the potentials, constraints and ambivalence of empowerment approaches and recommend a more political role for development aid in complex emergencies as it engages in more inclusive community building through processes of empowerment and recognition.
Recent history has been marked by the rise of post-conflict intervention as a component of military and foreign policy, as a form of humanitarianism and as a challenge to Westphalian notions of state sovereignty. The terms of debate, the history of the discipline and the evolution of scholarship and practice remain relatively under-examined, particularly in the post-9/11 period in which post-conflict recovery came to be construed as an extension of conflict and as a domain concerned principally with the national security of predominantly Western countries. The subsequent politicisation of post-conflict recovery and entry of post-conflict assistance into the political economy of conflict have fundamentally changed policy making and practice. The authors argue that research into post-conflict recovery, which must become increasingly rigorous and theoretically grounded, should detach itself from the myriad political agendas which have sought to impose themselves upon war-torn countries. The de-politicisation of post-conflict recovery, the authors conclude, may benefit from an increasingly structured “architecture of integrated, directed recovery.”
In 2002, conventional wisdom held that the consolidation of Bosnia’s three ethnically distinct armies into a single force under a unitary chain of command was an unrealistically ambitious goal for the foreseeable future. NATO’s Secretary-General agreed that year to remove defence reform as a precondition to Partnership for Peace (PfP) membership, a first step towards NATO accession. However, less than two years later defence reform was being implemented, albeit incrementally and begrudgingly, and those seemingly distant goals were near at hand. Scholars and policymakers quickly focused on the motives for this unlikely reform process and the institutions it would produce. However, since 2006, the year in which Bosnia’s armies and defence ministries formally united, the literature has gone silent on the topic of defence reform in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH). The fact that institutional defence reform had been achieved overshadowed discussions of its impact and long-term implications. This article attempts to fill this gap by addressing the following question: how has military downsizing been implemented within the scope of defence reform, and how has its implementation either supported or hindered broader state building agendas in BiH?
In spite of recurrent calls for a more locally rooted approach to thebuilding of ‘local capacities’, peace operations today are still largely under the influence of US hegemony and neoliberal values. Their aimis to transform war-torn societies along liberal lines, in both the political and the economic spheres. To achieve this, it is argued that the international community must begin by acting illiberally: rebuilding the structures of the state in order to give it the capacity to monopolize legitimate violence and manage the societal conflicts that are the unfortunate by-products of democracy and the free market. Leaders and ‘high politics’ are the central targets, as it is hoped that the rest of society will be affected in turn. However, this kind of social engineering from the top down can be counterproductive for the peace process and the nature of transition. Civil society should not be a secondary target: it should be the primary one. The Weberian approach to peace operations focuses too much on objective sources of legitimacy at the expense of those rooted in local, subjective perceptions of society. Since transitional justice has recently become part of the liberal peacebuilding ‘package’, integrated into a broad, positive definition of peace itself, transitional justice too should focus on civil society first. Building upon Habermas’s notion of communicative action and Putnam’s definition of social capital, this article will formulate the basis of a new approach to peace operations, one that would aim less at the rebuilding of state institutions and more at the reconstruction of social relations and unfettered dialogue between communities.