Dividing Divided States

Dividing Divided States

Gregory F. Treverton
Copyright Date: 2014
Pages: 248
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  • Book Info
    Dividing Divided States
    Book Description:

    When nations divide, whether peacefully or through violence, there are many issues beyond politics to negotiate in the aftermath. Understanding the concerns that are likely to confront separated states is vital in establishing stability in new states. Examining case studies in Africa, Europe, and Asia, international security expert Gregory Treverton provides a detailed guide to recent national divisions that range from the partition of India to the secession of Eritrea from Ethiopia.Dividing Divided Statesoffers an overview of the ways different states have handled such contentious issues as security and citizenship, oil and water resources, assets and liabilities, and the rights of pastoralist groups. In each case, Treverton considers how the root causes of secession-such as long-simmering conflicts, nationalist politics, and changed geopolitical circumstances-impact the effectiveness of policies that form new nations.Dividing Divided Statesserves as both a source of ideas for future secession policies and a reminder that, while the motivations and outcomes of secessions may differ widely, separating states face similar challenges in dividing populations, natural resources, and state resources. This book offers considered and cautionary lessons for policy makers and policy researchers alike.

    eISBN: 978-0-8122-0960-0
    Subjects: Political Science

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-vi)
  3. List of Abbreviations
    (pp. vii-x)
  4. Introduction
    (pp. 1-6)

    In the early 1990s, the weary senior director for Europe on the U.S. National Security Council used to kid his colleagues by saying, “Why don’t you get going? I’ve presided over the creation of lots of new countries in my area over the last few years. What have you been doing in your areas?” The flood of new states set loose by the end of communism and the Soviet empire has slowed to a trickle, but it is a continuing trickle. The vote for independence in southern Sudan in January 2011 is the latest instance of a new state but...

    • CHAPTER 1 Citizenship
      (pp. 9-20)

      The first people issue is citizenship. It is the essence of state sovereignty, for it identifies “us,” and separates “us” from “them.” Thus, if ensuring the safety of refugees is usually the most acute challenge of secession, the most enduring one is creating citizenship processes that will be fair and be regarded as such by all the states involved in the secession.

      For instance, in Sudan at secession, as many as two million southerners were internally displaced persons (IDPs) living in the North. In addition, there were both southerners and northerners who were not IDPs but lived and worked in...

    • CHAPTER 2 Refugees and Security
      (pp. 21-48)

      If citizenship is the enduring people issue, refugees and their security will be an acute one in secessions. Even with goodwill on both sides, it will be hard to avoid the perception of drop-dead dates, touching of mass movements of people. Almost any secession will leave some people in limbo. A critical part of that limbo can be citizenship, the issue discussed in the previous chapter.

      More immediately, though, secessions are likely to produce refugees, for those who identify with the original state and those who back the breakaway region will not be neatly separated. Indeed, in the 1990s, the...

    • CHAPTER 3 Pastoralists
      (pp. 49-66)

      The third of the people issues in secessions—how to deal with pastoralist populations who migrate seasonally in search of pasture and water but who, with secession, will now have to cross international borders—probably will be an issue only in African secessions. But it is likely to be an issue there, all the more so as global warming and desertification increase the length of seasonal migrations. It was crucial issue for Sudan. Indeed, the cycle of the civil war often turned on the migration cycle: when the pastoralists, especially the Misseriyya, were in the south, there was no war,...

    • CHAPTER 4 Oil and Infrastructure
      (pp. 69-95)

      Many countries, including rich ones, endowed with valuable natural resources have learned to their chagrin that those assets can be more curse than blessing. Not for nothing does the literature speak of the “resource curse” or the “Dutch disease,” after the Netherlands’ experience when it became a major natural gas exporter. When a nation has resources that can be extracted and sold in global commodity markets, it is all too tempting to develop the economy around that industry. Large resource exports drive up the value of the nation’s currency and drive out other economic activity, all the more so when...

    • CHAPTER 5 Resource Revenue Funds
      (pp. 96-106)

      A critical part of avoiding the resource curse is wisely managing the revenues from natural resources to promote broader national interests. A critical part of that management can be funds to stabilize government revenues during the ups and downs of resource prices and to save revenue to promote long-term economic growth. Typically, these funds call for a predetermined contribution (as a percentage of revenues or above a certain benchmark) of all government revenue from oil or another resource.

      Rules for the funds often prescribe strict investment and expenditure guidelines, in order to accomplish three purposes: shoring up government budgets when...

    • CHAPTER 6 Water
      (pp. 107-128)

      For many seceding states, especially those in Africa, water is their lifeblood. Division is likely to mean that existing water resources, most often a river basin, will also have to be divided. That probably will entail starting with current usage of the basin by the unified state, then negotiating a division of that usage between the two or more new states, along with mechanisms for preventing abuses, especially by the upriver state, and for handling disputes.

      This chapter outlines the issues and draws lessons based on four suggestive cases—the Nile Waters arrangements themselves, plus negotiated arrangements for the Indus,...

    • CHAPTER 7 Assets and Liabilities
      (pp. 131-150)

      This chapter turns from natural resources to national and institutional ones. It begins with assets and liabilities that need to be divided in secessions. Negotiations over those include a number of specialized concepts. This chapter lays out the principal terms, which refer, first, tothe nature of the assets or liabilitiesand, second, tohow the new states came into being. It then provides examples of how those concepts have been employed in previous negotiations about secession, ending with several policy suggestions. The four cases then form the remainder of the chapter. They are the secession of Montenegro from Serbia,...

    • CHAPTER 8 Currency and Financial Arrangements
      (pp. 151-172)

      The question of currency after secession looks deceptively straightforward: the new state will either attempt to maintain a monetary union in some form with the existing state or opt for a separate currency of its own. Yet in fact the apparently simple choice entails much wider decisions not just about the nature of the new national banking system but also about monetary policy and fiscal policy. Because they directly affect the pocketbooks of citizens, currency issues can be politically emotive well beyond the apparently technical nature of, for instance, currency cross rates.

      Like the others, this chapter draws on various...

    (pp. 173-178)

    The context of any particular secession plainly will matter enormously. Like divorces, secessions are less painful if done amicably, and when there is trust. Yet in many cases those will be exactly the commodities in short supply. And in at least one of the secessions described in this book, Eritrea’s departure from Ethiopia, the fact that the victors in the two states were allies led them to assume their comity would continue. They felt little immediate need for hard negotiations on specific issues. Yet when relations soured, these unresolved issues came back to haunt the parties, leading them to war...

    (pp. 179-180)
  10. NOTES
    (pp. 181-204)
    (pp. 205-218)
  12. INDEX
    (pp. 219-232)
    (pp. 233-234)