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A tale of two wars: great expectations, hard times

Keen, David (2009) A tale of two wars: great expectations, hard times. Conflict, Security and Development, 9 (4). pp. 515-534. ISSN 1467-8802

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Identification Number: 10.1080/14678800903345804


This article compares two very different wars—the civil war in Sierra Leone and the US-led invasion and occupation of Iraq—and finds some significant similarities. It notes that both wars can be seen as systems which promise (and deliver) benefits for relatively privileged actors and promise (but do not deliver) benefits for ordinary combatants. The article also examines the extent to which the recruitment of Sierra Leoneans and the recruitment of Americans were made possible by the existence of ‘failing states’.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2009 Taylor & Francis
Divisions: International Development
Subjects: J Political Science > JZ International relations
Date Deposited: 10 Dec 2010 15:46
Last Modified: 06 Nov 2021 00:11

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