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Political Economy Of Civil War Essay

1808 words - 8 pages

Berman & Laitin (2008) draw the same parallels between the activities of the terroristic groups and inability of government to provide the necessary commodities to the general population. The scholars present several examples illustrating that even fundamentalist religious groups like Taliban, Hamas, or Hezbollah are functioning within the states that failed to govern their resources (Berman & Laitin, 2008; Meehan, 2011). At the same time, according to authors, such groups serve as the guarantees to particular economic interests usually disguising their purpose with the religious or ideological propaganda (Berman & Laitin, 2008). At the same time, it is worth mentioning that such groups ...view middle of the document...

In addition, the scholars implied that the abundance of natural resources usually involve proxies who are eager to provide financial or in some cases military support in exchange of the access to the resources (Humphreys & Weinstein, 2008; Coclanis, 2000). As one of the most illustrative examples, the researchers present the war in Sierra Leone where Liberian warlord who later became the president of the state provided financial and military support for the rebels (Humphreys & Weinstein, 2008). Such assumptions provide the fundament for the conclusions that almost all rebels, armed conflicts, and civil wars involve particular economic interests of certain groups, from government of the country involved in the conflict to the proxies aiming to access the precious resources.
In a great quantity of cases the economic interests of the parties involved in the conflict are usually heated with the ethnical or social inequalities existing inside the country. Moreover, some of the actors profiting from the conflicts can induce the clashes by not only spreading propaganda, but also stimulating violence among particular groups. Arnson & Zartman (2005) named greed as the central stimulus of the armed conflicts and civil wars despite the other reasons usually lying on the surface and serving as the cover for true intentions. “Greed in the state promote rebellion, prolonged failure in the rebellion’s struggle for rights and grievances promotes greed among rebels, and greed within the rebellion promotes greed within the state” (Arnson & Zartman, 2005, p. 275). Such statement leads to the assumption that striving for economic benefits is the central cause of armed conflicts within the country where abundance of the resources serves as the main goal of all parties involved. However, it is important to admit that when pointing to all groups involved in the conflict, one has to exclude the civil population or the members of the ideological groups who are usually driven by ideas promoted within them.
At the same time, it is crucial to remember that not the abundance of natural resources serves as the primary factor provoking the conflicts, but the inability of government to manage them correctly. Fearon (2005) implied that basically a great amount of natural resources presents the opportunity to the country to raise its tax revenues by this to increase the economic stability of the country. Instead, usually the state’s leaders due to their greed and poor management create the grounds for rebellions by taking the advantage of their status and power. As the result of such politics and in cause of prolonged armed conflicts, the country usually experiences devastation, economic collapse, and again poor management of its resources. Collier (1998) proposed his explanation of such aftermath by examining several civil wars throughout the history. According to the results of the scholar, “decline is caused as war directly reduces production that causes a gradual loss of...

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