Gambling with Violence: State Outsourcing of War in Pakistan and India

ISBN : 9780190929961

Yelena Biberman
240 Pages
156 x 235 mm
Pub date
Aug 2019
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In Gambling with Violence, Yelena Biberman tackles a global problem that is particularly consequential for Pakistan and India: state outsourcing of violence to ordinary civilians, criminals, and ex-insurgents. Why would these countries gamble with their own national security by outsourcing violencearming nonstate actors inside their own borders? Drawing on over 200 interviews, archival research, and fieldwork conducted across Asia, Europe, and North America, Biberman introduces the "balance-of-interests" thesis to deepen our understanding of state-nonstate alliances in civil war. This framework centers on the distribution of power during war and shows how various combinations of interests result in distinct types of coalitions. Incorporating case studies of civil war and counterinsurgency, her book sheds light on how militias, alliances, and South Asian security connect today.


CHAPTER 1: Introduction
CHAPTER 2: State-Nonstate Alliances in Civil War: A New Balance-of-Interests Theory
CHAPTER 3: Saving the House of Islam: Pakistan's Volunteers in the War of 1971
CHAPTER 4 Guns Plus Interest: Renegades and Villagers in India's Kashmir War
CHAPTER 5: Tribal Awakenings in Pakistan and India
CHAPTER 6: All the State's Proxies in Turkey and Russia
CHAPTER 7: Conclusion

About the author: 

Yelena Biberman is an assistant professor of political science at Skidmore College and nonresident fellow at the Atlantic Council's South Asia Center. She specializes in the study of political violence, South Asian politics, and unconventional warfare.

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