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Civil War and Foreign Influence

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  • Facundo Albornoz
  • Esther Hauk

Abstract

We study a symmetric information bargaining model of civil war where a third (foreign) party can affect the probabilities of winning the conflict and the size of the post conflict spoils. We show that the possible alliance with a third party makes peaceful agreements difficult to reach and might lead to new commitment problems that trigger war. Also, we argue that the foreign party is likely to induce persistent informational asymmetries which might explain long lasting civil wars. We explore both political and economic incentives for a third party to intervene. The explicit consideration of political incentives leads to two predictions that allow for identifying the influence of foreign intervention on civil war incidence. Both predictions are confirmed for the case of the U.S. as a potential intervening nation: (i) civil wars around the world are more likely under Republican governments and (ii) the probability of civil wars decreases with U.S. presidential approval rates.

Suggested Citation

  • Facundo Albornoz & Esther Hauk, 2010. "Civil War and Foreign Influence," UFAE and IAE Working Papers 836.10, Unitat de Fonaments de l'Anàlisi Econòmica (UAB) and Institut d'Anàlisi Econòmica (CSIC), revised 19 Dec 2010.
  • Handle: RePEc:aub:autbar:836.10
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Albornoz, Facundo & Hauk, Esther, 2014. "Civil war and U.S. foreign influence," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 110(C), pages 64-78.
    2. Magesan, Arvind & Swee, Eik Leong, 2018. "Out of the ashes, into the fire: The consequences of U.S. weapons sales for political violence," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 107(C), pages 133-156.
    3. Párraga Rodríguez, Susana, 2018. "The dynamic effects of public expenditure shocks in the United States," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 56(C), pages 340-360.
    4. Abu-Bader, Suleiman & Ianchovichina, Elena, 2019. "Polarization, foreign military intervention, and civil conflict," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 141(C).
    5. Martínez, Luis R., 2017. "Transnational insurgents: Evidence from Colombia's FARC at the border with Chávez's Venezuela," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 126(C), pages 138-153.
    6. World Bank, 2020. "Violence without Borders," World Bank Publications - Books, The World Bank Group, number 33330.

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