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Radical Flank Effects

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A crucial yet under-studied aspect of civil resistance is the impact of simultaneous violent campaigns on the outcomes of campaigns of nonviolent resistance. That is, does a violent movement operating …

A crucial yet under-studied aspect of civil resistance is the impact of simultaneous violent campaigns on the outcomes of campaigns of nonviolent resistance. That is, does a violent movement operating at the same time and in the same country as a nonviolent one increase or decrease the likelihood of success of the nonviolent movement? One argument is that a violent movement may undermine the position of a nonviolent movement because it discredits all regime opponents, provokes repression, and reduces third party support. Another argument is that a violent movement increases the leverage of a nonviolent one by making it seem less threatening to elites or creating a crisis that is resolved in favor of the nonviolent challengers. All campaigns against states have a major, disruptive political objective: toppling a regime, ending foreign occupation, or secession. Generally, the presence of a simultaneous violent movement has no direct effect on the outcomes of nonviolent resistance movements. However, there is an indirect negative radical flank effect, as simultaneous violent movements decrease the level of participation in nonviolent movements.

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  • 1. RADICAL FLANK EFFECTS AND THE OUTCOMES OF CIVIL RESISTANCE MOVEMENTSKurt Schock & Erica ChenowethFletcher Summer InstituteJune 26, 2012
  • 2. nonviolent resistance• a powerful strategy for promoting democracy, human rights and self- determination• from 1973 to 2005 nonviolent resistance was a key factor in 50 of 67 democratic transitions (74.6%) (Karatnycky & Ackerman 2005)• from 1900 to 2006, the success rate major nonviolent campaigns was 53% while the success rate of major violent campaigns was 26% (all campaigns had maximalist goals such as regime change, N = 323) (Chenoweth & Stephan 2011)
  • 3. nonviolent resistance people power movement in the Philippines, 1986 anti-apartheid movement in South Africa, 1994• Did these movements succeed due to the power of nonviolent resistance, or because contemporaneous violent movements increased their leverage?
  • 4. radical flank effect• may apply to a situation in which there are two or more opposition groups• ―radicals‖ are conceptualized as those with more extreme methods or more extreme demands relative to other opposition groups• radical flank effects may be intra-movement or inter-movement• radical flank effects may be positive or negative
  • 5. positive radical flank effect• a contemporaneous violent campaign increases the leverage of the nonviolent campaign: makes the nonviolent movement seem less threatening and therefore a better alternative creates a political crisis that is resolved in favor of the nonviolent movement
  • 6. negative radical flank effect• a contemporaneous violent campaign decreases the leverage of the nonviolent campaign: shifts the struggle to where the regime usually has a comparative advantage  discredits all regime opponents and provides justification for widespread repression  reduces widespread popular participation by making all forms of opposition high risk decreases the likelihood of backfire
  • 7. research question & data• does the existence of a violent campaign, that occurs simultaneously with a nonviolent one, increase or decrease the likelihood of success of the nonviolent campaign?• NAVCO dataset (Chenoweth 2009)  323 primarily violent or nonviolent campaigns with maximalist objectives from 1900 to 2006  subset: 106 nonviolent campaigns (with or without simultaneous violent campaigns)
  • 8. data• the demands of all campaigns—regime change, national liberation, or secession—can be considered extreme (relative to the status quo)• in our application of the radical flank concept we conceptualize ―radicals‖ as groups that use methods of violent resistance
  • 9. bivariate cross-tabulation presence of absence of violent campaign violent campaign 22 (46%) 35 (60%)successful 26 (54%) 23 (40%)unsuccessful 48 (100%) 58 (100%)N = 106; X2 = 2.23; p < .136
  • 10. multivariate logistic regression• we examine the impact of simultaneous violent campaigns on the outcome of nonviolent campaigns controlling for: democracy state strength historical time level of mass participation
  • 11. findings• no support is found for a positive violent radical flank effect• in all models, the impact of a simultaneous violent campaign on the outcome of a nonviolent campaign is negative(but not statistically significant)
  • 12. findings• indirect support is found for a negative radical flank effect • a violent campaign is likely to decrease the level of popular participation in a nonviolent campaign and therefore decrease its likelihood of success (statistically significant) • nonviolent campaigns with a contemporaneous violent campaign have, on average, 50,000 participants • nonviolent campaigns withouta contemporaneous violent campaign have, on average, 100,000 participants
  • 13. findings• Why is there a decrease in participation? • violence decreases the costs of political repression for the state • violence makes all forms of protest riskier• the power of campaigns of nonviolent resistance inheres in their ability to promote widespread support and mobilization• violence decreases the likelihood of broad-based support and mass mobilization
  • 14. findings• in conclusion, across a large number of cases, there is no evidence for a positive radical flank effect• there is evidence for an indirect negative radical flank effect
  • 15. future research • consider the consequences of strategy that are independent of the outcomes of campaigns  violence may have high social costs (loss of life, perpetuation of violence, militarization, authoritarian relations etc.)  nonviolence may promote civil society and democratic relations
  • 16. 18• campaign – a series of purposeful and observable collective actions implemented by an identifiable political group to attain a specified political goal
  • 17. appendix: variablesVariable Coding Source N Mean s.d. rangeContemporaneous Dichotomous variable with 1=presence;Violent Campaign 0=absence. NAVCO 1.0 (2009) 106 .453 .500 0 to 1Contemporaneous Dichotomous variable with 1=presence;Violent Campaign 0=absence 106 .179 .385 0 to 1Inter-movement NAVCO 1.0 (2009)Contemporaneous Dichotomous variable with 1=presence;Violent Campaign 0=absence 106 .274 .448 0 to 1Intra-movement NAVCO 1.0 (2009)Democracy Polity IV Score Polity IV (2010) 95 -3.126 6.156 -10 to 10 Composite Index of National .000017 to .170108State Capacity Capabilities Correlates of War (2009) 94 .029 .051 Logged number of estimated 5.99 to 14.509Mass Participation participants in peak event NAVCO 1.0 (2009) 80 11.054 1.869 6.324 to 13.916 Logged population of country in Penn World Tables 6.2 82 9.632 1.4733Population thousands (2006) -1.382 to 0.832Democracy 87 -.128 .426x State Capacity Interaction term Authors’ calculations Dichotomous variable with 1=fullSuccess success; 0=otherwise. NAVCO 1.0 (2009) 106 .538 .501 0 to 1
  • 18. appendix: identification of campaignsAll campaigns had a maximalist goal of regime change, liberation fromforeign occupation, or secession.A list of nonviolent campaigns was developed based on anexamination of scholarly works and encyclopedias of nonviolentresistance (e.g., Carter et al. 2006). The list was then submitted toscholars who made recommended additions or deletions.A list of violent campaigns was developed based on an examinationof scholarly works and encyclopedias of violent resistance(e.g., Clodfelter 2002).
  • 19. appendix: examples of campaigns, ICountry Year(s) Target of nonviolent campaign Inter-movement violent campaignArgentina 1977-81 Military Regime People’s Revolutionary ArmyPhilippines 1983-86 Marcos Regime New Peoples ArmyBurma 1988 Military Regime NDBP/PREPAKLebanon 2005 Syrian Forces Hezbollah...total cases = 19
  • 20. appendix: examples of campaigns, IICountry Year(s) Target of nonviolent campaign Intra-movement violent campaignIran 1977-78 Shah’s Regime Fedayeen/MujahedinSudan 1985 Nimiery Regime SPLASouth Africa 1984-94 Apartheid Regime MK of ANC/PAC/AzapoPalestine 1987-90 Israeli Occupation PLO...total cases = 29
  • 21. appendix: examples of campaigns, IIICountry Year(s) Target of nonviolent campaign Nocontemporaneous violentcampaignBrazil 1977-78 Military Regime -Poland 1981-89 Communist Regime -China 1984-94 Communist Regime -Belarus 2006 Lukashenko Regime -...total cases = 58
  • 22. 24logistic regression: effects of contemporaneous violent campaigns on the success of nonviolent campaignsExplanatoryVariables Model 1 Model 2 Model 3 Model 4 Model 5 Model 6 Model 7 -.587 -.674 -.484 -.639 -.599 -.118 -.074Contemporaneous (.449) (.587) (.514) (.491) (.532) (.540) (.610)Violent Campaign -14.51% -16.16% -11.99% -15.77% -14.81% -2.94% -1.85% .081 .077 .051 .043Democracy (.051) (.038) (.047) (.050) 1.94% 1.92% 1.26% 1.06% .533 -3.831 -2.618State Capacity (5.123) (4.869) (8.062) 12.79% 95.01% 64.96% -.278Population (.196) 6.67% .113Democracyx State Capacity (1.144) 2.81% .362*** .315**Mass Participation (.130) (.141) 9.06% 7.87% Intercept .420 3.617 .616 .566 .689 3.900 -3.238 N 106 70 95 94 87 80 70 X2 1.71 6.50 5.48 2.23 4.21 7.87 6.61Note: Log-odds; standard errors in * p < .10parentheses; % change in likelihood ** p < .05of success in italics *** p < .01
  • 23. 25OLS regression: effect of simultaneous violent campaign on nonviolent campaign participation Independent Variables Number of Participants in Nonviolent Resistance Campaigns (logged) Contemporaneous Violent -1.08** Campaign (.46) .32** Population (.16) 8.54*** Constant (1.70) N 61 R2 .145

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