Superpower Interventions and their Consequences for Democracy: An Empirical Inquiry
Do superpower interventions to install and prop up political leaders in other countries subsequently result in more or less democracy, and does this effect vary depending on whether the intervening superpower is democratic or authoritarian? While democracy may be expected to decline contemporaneously with superpower interference, the effect on democracy after a few years is far from obvious. The absence of reliable information on covert interventions has hitherto served as an obstacle to seriously addressing these questions. The recent declassification of Cold War CIA and KGB documents now makes it possible to systematically address these questions in the Cold War context. We thus develop a new panel dataset of superpower interventions during the Cold War. We find that superpower interventions are followed by significant declines in democracy, and that the substantive effects are large. Perhaps surprisingly, once endogeneity is addressed, US and Soviet interventions have equally detrimental effects on the subsequent level of democracy; both decrease democracy by about 33%. Our findings thus suggest that one should not expect significant differences in the adverse institutional consequences of superpower interventions based on whether the intervening superpower is a democracy or a dictatorship.
|Date of creation:||May 2008|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.|
Web page: http://www.nber.org
More information through EDIRC
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Jeremy Weinstein, 2005. "Autonomous Recovery and International Intervention in Comparative Perspective," Working Papers 57, Center for Global Development.
- Treisman, Daniel, 2000. "The causes of corruption: a cross-national study," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 76(3), pages 399-457, June.
- Paul Collier & Anke Hoeffler, 2002. "On the Incidence of Civil War in Africa," Journal of Conflict Resolution, Peace Science Society (International), vol. 46(1), pages 13-28, February.
- Easterly, William, 2007. "Inequality does cause underdevelopment: Insights from a new instrument," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 84(2), pages 755-776, November.
- Paolo Mauro, 1995. "Corruption and Growth," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 110(3), pages 681-712.
- Collier, Paul & Hoeffler, Anke, 1998. "On Economic Causes of Civil War," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 50(4), pages 563-73, October.
- James Meernik, 1996. "United States Military Intervention and the Promotion of Democracy," Journal of Peace Research, Peace Research Institute Oslo, vol. 33(4), pages 391-402, November.
- de Mesquita, Bruce Bueno & Downs, George W., 2006. "Intervention and Democracy," International Organization, Cambridge University Press, vol. 60(03), pages 627-649, July.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:13992. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: ()
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.