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Inside InsurgencyViolence, Civilians, and Revolutionary Group Behavior$
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Claire Metelits

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780814795774

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9780814795774.001.0001

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The Theoretical and Practical Implications of Active Rivalry

The Theoretical and Practical Implications of Active Rivalry

(p.161) 6 The Theoretical and Practical Implications of Active Rivalry
Inside Insurgency

Claire Metelits

NYU Press

This chapter discusses the theoretical themes addressed in the study and the implications of active rivalry. Insurgents treat local citizens violently when they face active rivalry. Therefore, the presence or absence of rivals determines the type of behavior that insurgents adopt. When an insurgent group faces low levels of competition, violence against civilians tends toward the low (contractual) end of the spectrum. The existence of rivalry, not resources, is central to the insurgent–civilian dynamic. Rivals play a crucial role because competition threatens resources, and the lack of resources in turn threatens survival. Without rivalry, a group possesses control over the extraction and distribution of resources and thus has increased opportunities and expanding power and loses the need to resort to coercion.

Keywords:   active rivalry, insurgent groups, insurgent violence, insurgent–civilian dynamic, coercion

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