Determining Success: A Multi-Method Examination of Third Party Interventions into African Civil Wars
Mattoon, Audrey Lynne
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Civil wars are the most frequent form of warfare in the international system today. Military interventions into civil wars were 140% more common than classic interstate wars in the period between 1960 and 2004. Despite the popularity of military interventions into these conflicts, research has arrived at contradictory conclusions about the utility of interventions. This study applies a relational approach to theorizing about interventions and reconceptualizes intervention success to overcome some of the current research gaps. A special focus is devoted to the relationships between former colonial powers and their colonies to determine the extent to which these relationships in particular contribute to intervention success or failure. This study employs a multi-method design where broad configurations of conditions were obtained from the application of both csQCA and fsQCA methods, followed by focused, structured comparative cases. I apply QCA methods to a dataset derived from the Correlates of War and augmented with relationship conditions coded through primary and secondary source research. This study concludes that inter-state relations do play a part in determining intervention success. Intervention dyads that share a colonial legacy, shared language, or salient economic relationships are particularly likely to experience successful interventions. Further, the case study analysis supports the role of institutional learning in reducing operational friction.