Date of Award
Josef Korbel School of International Studies
Civil war, Conflict, Legitimacy, Private military and security companies (PMSCs), Private contractors, Private military
The growth of non-state actors has significantly changed the nature of conflict. Rebel groups increasingly challenge state rule while private military and security companies (PMSCs) increasingly enter conflict spaces on behalf of a variety of actors, including states seeking to suppress insurgencies. This case study of the Revolutionary United Front (RUF) during Sierra Leone’s civil war between 1991-2002 contributes to emerging work on rebel behavior by examining how rebel’s legitimacy-seeking behavior might evolve when PMSCs enter a conflict context. I explore the ways that PMSCs can shift perceived incentive structures surrounding insurgents’ interpretations of and engagements with legitimacy during conflict, thus fostering opportunities for shifts in rebel behavior. In Sierra Leone, the RUF engaged in public facing tactics drawn from normative and identity-based frameworks intended to de-legitimize EO and by extension, the state as a client, while also diversifying governance and increasingly relying on highly public displays of violence directed toward civilians and pro-government forces.
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Received from ProQuest
Lauder, Anne, "Legitimacy in Conflict Contexts: Shifting Rebel Engagement in Sierra Leone and the Presence of Private Contractors" (2023). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 2292.
Sub Saharan Africa studies