Military Expenditure in Post-Conflict Societies
Post-conflict situations face a high risk of reversion to conflict. We investigate the effect of military expenditure by the government during the first decade post-conflict on the risk of reversion. We contrast two theories as to the likely effects. In one, military spending deters conflict by reducing the prospects of rebel success. In the other it acts as a signal to the rebels of government intentions. In the signalling model, low military spending signals that the government intends to adhere to the terms of the peace settlement and so reduces the risk of renewed rebellion. We investigate the effects of post- conflict military spending on the risk of conflict, using our existing models of military expenditure and of conflict risk. We find that, consistent with the signalling model, high military spending post- conflict significantly increases the risk of renewed conflict. This effect of military spending is distinctive to post-conflict period, and becomes progressively more pronounced over the decade.
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