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Persistence of Civil Wars

Daron Acemoglu, Davide Ticchi and Andrea Vindigni

Journal of the European Economic Association, 2010, vol. 8, issue 2-3, 664-676

Abstract: A notable feature of post-World War II civil wars is their very long average duration. We provide a theory of the persistence of civil wars. The civilian government can successfully defeat rebellious factions only by creating a relatively strong army. In weakly institutionalized polities this opens the way for excessive influence or coups by the military. Civilian governments whose rents are largely unaffected by civil wars then choose small and weak armies that are incapable of ending insurrections. Our framework also shows that when civilian governments need to take more decisive action against rebels, they may be forced to build oversized armies, beyond the size necessary for fighting the insurrection, as a commitment to not reforming the military in the future. (JEL: H2, N10, N40, P16) (c) 2010 by the European Economic Association.

JEL-codes: H2 N10 N40 P16 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2010
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Working Paper: Persistence of Civil Wars (2009) Downloads
Working Paper: Persistence of Civil Wars (2009) Downloads
Working Paper: Persistence of Civil Wars (2009) Downloads
Working Paper: Persistence of Civil Wars (2009) Downloads
Working Paper: Persistence of civil wars (2009) Downloads
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