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Quagmire in Civil War

Why do some civil wars experience quagmire, a situation in which belligerents are trapped in fighting? To explain this puzzle, Jonah Schulhofer-Wohl (Leiden University Institute of Political Science) analyses the overlapping strategic interactions between foreign powers and the warring parties. Studying conflicts in Lebanon, Chad, and Yemen, he combines interviews with former combatants, statistical analysis, and historical comparisons to evaluate how quagmire comes about. The research indicates that a popular notion that quagmire is intrinsic to some countries or war may misdiagnose this problem. Quagmire can be made via the deliberate choices of the main actors in civil wars.

Jonah Schulhofer-Wohl
26 October 2020
Cambridge University Press
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