An Introduction to the Causes of War: Patterns of Interstate Conflict from World War I to Iraq

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9780742555105: An Introduction to the Causes of War: Patterns of Interstate Conflict from World War I to Iraq
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This pioneering book explains the causes of war through a sustained combination of theoretical insights and detailed case studies. Using the major theories of international conflict as a guide to examine contemporary examples of the outbreak of war, Cashman and Robinson find that while all wars have multiple causes, these factors typically combine in identifiable "dangerous patterns." In assessing and comparing these patterns, this is the only undergraduate text to systematically join detailed case studies to the theories and empirical research carried out by political scientists on the causes of war. Through the examples of World War I, World War II in the Pacific, the Six-Day War, the Indo-Pakistani War of 1971, the Iran-Iraq War, and the Iraq War of 2003, the authors uncover the complex multilevel processes by which disputes between countries evolve into bloody conflicts.

They emphasize the importance of escalation through conflict spirals between rival countries. They also point out the links between war and territorial disputes, the underappreciated role of the domestic political environment (especially internal political instability), and the importance of crucial misperceptions by national leaders. The authors identify specific patterns in which disputes escalate: the "classic rivalry spiral," the "domestic instability spiral," and "complex spirals." They also find that wars between states of unequal power follow a starkly different pattern than wars between relative equals. Ideal for a range of courses in international relations, this focused text clearly explains theory and applies it to concrete examples in a way that allows students to fully understand the origins of war.
Added Case Study: Ethiopian-Eritrean War

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About the Author:

Greg Cashman is professor of political science at Salisbury University. Leonard C. Robinson is associate professor of political science at Salisbury University.

Review:

Provide[s] undergraduates with a clear, systematic application of the 'causes of war' literature to seven wars of the 20th century. These are an interesting and diverse set of cases including WW I, WW II in the Pacific, the 1967 Arab-Israeli conflict, the 1971 Indo-Pakistan War, the Iran-Iraq War, and the 2003 Iraq War. . . . Recommended. (Rutland, Peter Choice)

Excellent scholarship, references, and analysis. The authors' multilevel patterns bring coherence to the innumerable case studies and lessons learned that dominate the field. (William H. Mott, IV)

A tour de force that will displace Stoessinger’s Why Nations Go to War as the dominant case-studies text in the field. This is an insightful, trenchant analysis of specific wars that takes into account the vast amount of scientific work on the subject. Both scholars and students will learn much from this book. (John A. Vasquez and Marie T. Henehan)

Provide[s] undergraduates with a clear, systematic application of the 'causes of war' literature to seven wars of the 20th century. These are an interesting and diverse set of cases including WW I, WW II in the Pacific, the 1967 Arab-Israeli conflict, the1971 Indo-Pakistan War, the Iran-Iraq War, and the 2003 Iraq War. . . . Recommended.... (Rutland, Peter Choice)

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9780742555099: An Introduction to the Causes of War: Patterns of Interstate Conflict from World War I to Iraq

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ISBN 10:  0742555097 ISBN 13:  9780742555099
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2007
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