States in Disguise: Causes of State Support for Rebel Groups

ISBN : 9780190250881

Assistant of International Relations Belgin San-Akca
320 Pages
156 x 235 mm
Pub date
Oct 2016
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There is a long history of state governments providing support to nonstate armed groups fighting battles in other countries. Examples include Syria's aid to Hamas, Ecuador's support for FARC, and Libya's donation of arms to the IRA. What motivates states to do this? And why would rebel groups align themselves with these states? In States in Disguise, Belgin San-Akca builds a rigorous theoretical framework within which to study the complex and fluid network of relationships between states and rebel groups, including ethnic and religious insurgents, revolutionary groups, and terrorists. She proves that patterns of alliances between armed rebels and modern states are hardly coincidental, but the result of systematic and strategic choices made by both states and rebel groups. San-Akca demonstrates that these alliances are the result of shared conflictual, material and ideational interests, and her theory shows how to understand these ties via the domestic and international environment. Drawing from an original data set of 455 groups, their target states, and supporters over a span of more than sixty years, she explains that states are most likely to support rebel groups when they are confronted with internal and external threats simultaneously, while rebels select strong states and democracies when seeking outside support. She also shows that states and rebels look to align with one another when they share ethnic, religious and ideological ties. Through its broad chronological sweep, States in Disguise reveals how and why the phenomenon of state and rebel group alliances has evolved over time.


List of Maps
List of Figures
List of Tables
List of Abbreviations
1. Introduction: Bringing Nonstate Armed Groups into the Study of International Relations
2. A Selection Theory of State Support for Rebel Groups
3. Dangerous Companions: Research Design, Data Collection and Coding Procedures
4. States' Selection Model
5. Rebels' Selection Model
6. Conclusion: Main Trends in State Support of Nonsate Armed Groups
Appendix 1. Sample Data Table
Appendix 2. Dangerous Companions: Cooperation between States and Nonstate Armed Groups (NAGs)
Appendix 3. States with a Single-Party Communist Regime (Up to 2010)
Appendix 4. The Entire Cases of International Support, 1945-2010
Appendix 5. The Entire Cases of De Facto Support, 1945-2010

About the author: 

Belgin San-Akca is Assistant Professor of International Relations at Koc University.

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