Could rebel child soldiers prolong civil wars?

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2017
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Böhmelt, Tobias
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Cooperation and Conflict. 2017, 52(3), pp. 332-359. ISSN 0010-8367. eISSN 1460-3691. Available under: doi: 10.1177/0010836716684880
Zusammenfassung

While we know why rebels may recruit children for their cause, our understanding of the consequences of child soldiering by non-state armed groups remains limited. The following research contributes to addressing this by examining how rebels’ child recruitment practice affects the duration of internal armed conflicts. We advance the argument that child soldiering increases the strength of rebel organizations vis-a-vis the government. This, in turn, lowers the capability asymmetry between these non-state actors and the incumbent, allowing the former to sustain dispute. Ultimately, the duration of armed conflicts is likely to be prolonged. We analyse this relationship with quantitative data on child soldier recruitment by rebel groups in the post-1989 period. The results confirm our main hypothesis: disputes are substantially longer when rebels recruit children. This work has important implications for the study of armed conflicts, conflict duration and our understanding of child soldiering.

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ISO 690HAER, Roos, Tobias BÖHMELT, 2017. Could rebel child soldiers prolong civil wars?. In: Cooperation and Conflict. 2017, 52(3), pp. 332-359. ISSN 0010-8367. eISSN 1460-3691. Available under: doi: 10.1177/0010836716684880
BibTex
@article{Haer2017-09Could-40110,
  year={2017},
  doi={10.1177/0010836716684880},
  title={Could rebel child soldiers prolong civil wars?},
  number={3},
  volume={52},
  issn={0010-8367},
  journal={Cooperation and Conflict},
  pages={332--359},
  author={Haer, Roos and Böhmelt, Tobias}
}
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