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Exploring Cultural Predictors of Military Intervention Success

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Technical Report

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Air Command And Staff College Maxwell Air Force Base United States

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The following paper describes an ex post facto exploration of predictors of military intervention success. As such, the research examined pre- and post-intervention political conditions as a measure of democratization in countries subject to UN peacekeeping missions. To determine political conditions of democratization in countries subject to UN intervention, the research referred to the Polity IV Projects database of Political Regime Characteristics and Transitions, 1800-2013. The study measured the difference in each country pre- and post-intervention average polity score and corrected this statistic for UN per capita cost and identified countries that significantly outperformed and underperformed the group average. These countries were subjected to further qualitative analysis to identify cultural factors that might predict intervention success. The study concluded that Central American former Spanish colonies with large mestizo populations and a longer history of independence tended to outperform other UN interventions. The study also determined that while ethnic fractionalization was a predictor of pre-intervention low polity scores, it was not related to performance change in average polity score in the study.

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