Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home
Hostname: page-component-55597f9d44-54jdg Total loading time: 0.496 Render date: 2022-08-10T01:16:45.535Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "shouldUseShareProductTool": true, "shouldUseHypothesis": true, "isUnsiloEnabled": true, "useRatesEcommerce": false, "useNewApi": true } hasContentIssue true

The International Politics of Incomplete Sovereignty: How Hostile Neighbors Weaken the State

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  05 April 2018

Get access

Abstract

Why do some countries fail to govern their territory? Incomplete domestic sovereignty, defined as the absence of effective state authority over territory, has severe consequences in terms of security, order, economic growth, and human well-being. These negative consequences raise the question of why such spaces remain without effective authority. While the international relations literature suggests that state weakness persists because of an absence of war and the comparative politics literature treats political underdevelopment as the consequence of domestic factors that raise the costs of exercising authority, these views are incomplete. I argue that hostile neighbors weaken state authority over territory through a strategy of foreign interference. Foreign interference in domestic sovereignty is a powerful instrument of statecraft that can yield domestic and foreign policy benefits. I investigate the effects of hostile neighboring states through a cross-national, within-country statistical analysis utilizing a novel indicator of state authority, and pair this analysis with a qualitative case study of Malaysian subversion of the Philippines in the 1970s. Together, this evidence shows how this international factor is an underappreciated yet important contributor to weak state authority even after accounting for domestic factors. The study's conclusions challenge our understanding of the effects of international politics on internal political development.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © The IO Foundation 2018 

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)

References

Akcinaroglu, Seden, and Radziszewski, Elizabeth. 2005. Expectations, Rivalries, and Civil War Duration. International Interactions 31 (4):349–74.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Altonji, Joseph G., Elder, Todd E., and Taber, Christopher R.. 2005. Selection on Observed and Unobserved Variables: Assessing the Effectiveness of Catholic Schools. Journal of Political Economy 113 (1):151–84.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Atzili, Boaz. 2012. Good Fences, Bad Neighbors: Border Fixity and International Conflict. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
Bapat, Navin A. 2011. Understanding State Sponsorship of Militant Groups. British Journal of Political Science 42 (1):129.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Bapat, Navin A., and Zeigler, Sean. 2016. Terrorism, Dynamic Commitment Problems, and Military Conflict. American Journal of Political Science 60 (2):337–51.Google Scholar
Bennett, D. Scott. 1997. Security, Bargaining, and the End of Interstate Rivalry. International Studies Quarterly 40 (2):157–83.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Bremer, Stuart A. 1992. Dangerous Dyads: Conditions Affecting the Likelihood of Interstate War, 1816–1965. Journal of Conflict Resolution 36 (2):309–41.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Busse, Matthias, and Hefeker, Carsten. 2007. Political Risk, Institutions and Foreign Direct Investment. European Journal of Political Economy 23 (2):397415.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Byman, Daniel. 2005. Deadly Connections: States that Sponsor Terrorism. New York: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Byman, Daniel, Chalk, Peter, Hoffman, Bruce, Rosenau, William, and Brannan, David. 2001. Trends in Outside Support for Insurgent Movements. Santa Monica: RAND Corporation.Google Scholar
Carter, David B. 2012. A Blessing or a Curse? State Support for Terrorist Groups. International Organization 66 (1):129–51.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Carter, David B. 2015. The Compellence Dilemma: International Disputes with Violent Groups. International Studies Quarterly 59 (3):461–76.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Carter, David B., and Abramson, Scott F.. 2016. The Historical Origins of Territorial Disputes. American Political Science Review 110 (4):674–98.Google Scholar
Cederman, Lars-Erik, Girardin, Luc, and Gleditsch, Kristian Skrede. 2009. Ethnonationalist Triads: Assessing the Influence of Kin Groups on Civil Wars. World Politics 61 (3):403–37.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Cederman, Lars-Erik, Gleditsch, Kristian Skrede, Salehyan, Idean, and Wucherpfennig, Julian. 2013. Transborder Ethnic Kin and Civil War. International Organization 67 (2):389410.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Cederman, Lars-Erik, Weidmann, Nils B., and Gleditsch, Kristian Skrede. 2011. Horizontal Inequalities and Ethnonationalist Civil War: A Global Comparison. American Political Science Review 105 (3):478–95.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Che Man, W.K. 1990. Muslim Separatism: The Moros of the Southern Philippines and the Malays of Southern Thailand. Singapore: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
Colaresi, Michael P., Rasler, Karen A., and Thompson, William R.. 2007. Strategic Rivalries in World Politics: Position, Space, and Conflict Escalation. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
Collier, Paul, and Hoeffler, Anke. 2004. Greed and Grievance in Civil War. Oxford Economic Papers 56 (4):563–95.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Diehl, Paul F. 1991. Geography and War: A Review and Assessment of the Empirical Literature. International Interactions 17 (1):1127.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Ertman, Thomas. 1997. Birth of the Leviathan: Building States and Regimes in Early Modern Europe. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Fazal, Tanisha M. 2007. State Death: The Politics and Geography of Conquest, Occupation, and Annexation. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
Fearon, James D., and Laitin, David D.. 2003. Ethnicity, Insurgency, and Civil War. American Political Science Review 97 (1):7590.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Fearon, James D., and Laitin, David D.. 2011. Sons of the Soil, Migrants, and Civil War. World Development 39 (2):199211.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Findley, Michael G., Piazza, James A., and Young, Joseph K.. 2012. Games Rivals Play: Terrorism in International Rivalries. The Journal of Politics 74 (1):235–48.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Findley, Michael G., and Teo, Tze Kwang. 2008. Rethinking Third-Party Interventions into Civil Wars: An Actor-Centric Approach. The Journal of Politics 68 (4):828–37.Google Scholar
Galvez, Joe. 1987. A Peace Process That May Lead to War. Mr. and Ms. Special Edition 4 (21):1922.Google Scholar
Gartzke, Erik. 2007. The Capitalist Peace. American Journal of Political Science 51 (1):166–91.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Geukjian, Ohannes. 2012. Ethnicity, Nationalism, and Conflict in the South Caucasus: Nagorno-Karabakh and the Legacy of the Soviet Nationalities Policy. Burlington, VT: Ashgate.Google Scholar
Ghobarah, Hazem Adam, Huth, Paul, and Russett, Bruce. 2003. Civil Wars Kill and Maim People Long After the Shooting Stops. American Political Science Review 97 (2):189202.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Gibler, Douglas M. 2012. The Territorial Peace. New York: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Gibril, M.A. 1979. Evaluating Census Response Errors: A Case Study for the Gambia. Paris: Development Centre of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.Google Scholar
Gleditsch, Kristian Skrede. 2007. Transnational Dimensions of Civil War. Journal of Peace Research 44 (3):293309.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Goertz, Gary, and Diehl, Paul F.. 2000. War and Peace in International Rivalry. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press.Google Scholar
Hendrix, Cullen S. 2011. Head for the Hills? Rough Terrain, State Capacity, and Civil War. Civil Wars 13 (4):345–70.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Hensel, Paul R. 1996. Charting a Course to Conflict: Territorial Issues and Interstate Conflict, 1816–1992. Conflict Management and Peace Science 15 (1):4373.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Herbst, Jeffrey. 2000. States and Power in Africa: Comparative Lessons in Authority and Control. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
Huth, Paul K. 1996a. Enduring Rivalries and Territorial Disputes, 1950–1990. Conflict Management and Peace Science 15 (1):741.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Huth, Paul K. 1996b. Standing Your Ground: Territorial Disputes and International Conflict. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press.Google Scholar
Huth, Paul K., and Allee, Todd L.. 2002. The Democratic Peace and Territorial Conflict in the Twentieth Century. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
Iqbal, Zaryab, and Starr, Harvey. 2016. State Failure in the Modern World. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press.Google Scholar
Jackson, Robert H., and Rosberg, Carl G.. 1982. Why Africa's Weak States Persist: The Empirical and the Juridical in Statehood. World Politics 35 (1):124.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Kansakar, Vidya Bir Singh. 1977. Population Censuses of Nepal and the Problems of Data Analysis. Kathmandu: Center for Economic Development and Administration.Google Scholar
Kisangani, Emizet F., and Pickering, Jeffrey. 2014. Rebels, Rivals, and Post-colonial StateBuilding: Identifying Bellicist Influences on State Extractive Capability. International Studies Quarterly 58 (1):187–98.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Lacina, Bethany, and Gleditsch, Nils Petter. 2013. The Waning of War is Real: A Response to Gohdes and Price. Journal of Conflict Resolution 57 (6):1109–27.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Lee, Melissa M., and Zhang, Nan. 2017. Legibility and the Informational Foundations of State Capacity. Journal of Politics 79 (1):118–32.Google Scholar
Lucman, Norodin Alonto. 2000. Moro Archives: A History of Armed Conflicts in Mindanao and East Asia. Quezon City, Philippines: FLC Press.Google Scholar
Mackinlay, John, and Sharov, Evgenii. 2003. Russian Peacekeeping Operations in Georgia. In Regional Peacekeepers: The Paradox of Russian Peacekeeping, edited by Mackinlay, John and Cross, Peter, 63110. Tokyo: United Nations University Press.Google Scholar
Metz, Steven. 1986. The Mozambique National Resistance and South African Foreign Policy. African Affairs 85 (341):491507.Google Scholar
Michalopoulos, Stelios, and Papaioannou, Elias. 2016. The Long-Run Effects of the Scramble for Africa. American Economic Review 106 (7):1802–48.Google Scholar
Minasyan, Sergey. 2011. The Quest for Stability in the Karabakh Conflict: Conventional Deterrence and Political Containment. PONARS Eurasia Memo no. 188. Available at <https://www2.gwu.edu/~ieresgwu/assets/docs/ponars/pepm_188.pdf>..>Google Scholar
Minder, Raphael, Anderlini, Jamil, and Lamont, James. 2009. China Blocks India ADB Loan Plan. Financial Times, 10 April.Google Scholar
Minorities at Risk Project. 2009. Minorities at Risk Dataset. College Park, MD: Center for International Development and Conflict Management.Google Scholar
Montalvo, Jose G., and Reynal-Querol, Marta. 2005. Ethnic Polarization, Potential Conflict, and Civil Wars. The American Economic Review 95 (3):796816.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Murdoch, James C., and Sandler, Todd. 2004. Civil Wars and Economic Growth: Spatial Dispersion. American Journal of Political Science 48 (1):138–51.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Myers, Robert J. 1940. Errors and Bias in the Reporting of Ages in Census Data. Transactions of the Actuarial Society of America 41 (104):394415.Google Scholar
Mylonas, Harris. 2012. The Politics of Nation-Building: Making Co-Nationals, Refugees, and Minorities. New York: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
National Archives and Records Administration. 2015a. Central Files, February 1963–1973/Subject-Numeric File, RG 59: General Records of the Department of State. College Park: United States National Archives.Google Scholar
National Archives and Records Administration. 2015b. Central Foreign Policy Files, 1973–1979/Electronic Telegrams, RG 59: General Records of the Department of State. College Park: United States National Archives.Google Scholar
Noble, Lela Garner. 1977. Philippine Policy Toward Sabah: A Claim to Independence. Tucson: University of Arizona Press.Google Scholar
Oneal, John R., and Russett, Bruce M.. 1997. The Classical Liberals Were Right: Democracy, Interdependence, and Conflict, 1950–1985. International Studies Quarterly 41 (2):267–93.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Onorato, Massimiliano Gaetano, Scheve, Kenneth, and Stasavage, David. 2014. Technology and the Era of the Mass Army. The Journal of Economic History 74 (2):449–81.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Østby, Gudrun. 2008. Polarization, Horizontal Inequalities and Violent Civil Conflict. Journal of Peace Research 45 (2):143–62.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Pinker, Steven. 2011. The Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined. New York: Viking.Google Scholar
Quandt, Anna Spitzer. 1973. The Social Production of Census Data: Interviews from the 1971 Moroccan Census. PhD dissertation, University of California, Los Angeles.Google Scholar
Rasler, Karen, and Thompson, William R.. 1989. War and State Making: The Shaping of the Global Powers. Boston: Unwin Hyman.Google Scholar
Rasler, Karen, and Thompson, William R.. 2006. Contested Territory, Strategic Rivalries, and Conflict Escalation. International Studies Quarterly 50 (1):145–67.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Reed, William, and Chiba, Daina. 2010. Decomposing the Relationship Between Contiguity and Militarized Conflict. American Journal of Political Science 54 (1):6173.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Rider, Tony J., and Owsiak, Andrew P.. 2015. Border Settlement, Commitment Problems, and the Causes of Contiguous Rivalry. Journal of Peace Research 52 (4):508–21.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Rodrik, Dani. 1999. Where Did All the Growth Go? External Shocks, Social Conflict, and Growth Collapses. Journal of Economic Growth 4 (4):385412.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Salehyan, Idean. 2007. Transnational Rebels: Neighboring States as Sanctuary for Rebel Groups. World Politics 59 (2):217–42.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Salehyan, Idean, Gleditsch, Kristian Skrede, and Cunningham, David E.. 2011. Explaining External Support for Insurgent Groups. International Organization 65 (4):709–44.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Scott, James C. 2009. The Art of Not Being Governed: An Anarchist History of Upland Southeast Asia. New Haven: Yale University Press.Google ScholarPubMed
Senese, Paul D., and Vasquez, John A.. 2003. A Unified Explanation of Territorial Conflict: Testing the Impact of Sampling. International Studies Quarterly 47 (2):275–98.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Soifer, Hillel. 2016. Regionalism, Ethnic Diversity, and Variation in Public Good Provision by National States. Comparative Political Studies 49 (10):1341–71.Google Scholar
Soifer, Hillel. 2015. State Building in Latin America. New York: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Staniland, Paul. 2012. States, Insurgents, and Wartime Political Orders. Perspectives on Politics 10 (2):243–64.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Starr, Harvey. 2005. Territory, Proximity, and Spatiality: The Geography of International Conflict. International Studies Review 7 (3):387406.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Stern, Tom. 2012. Nur Misuari: An Authorized Biography. Manila: Anvil Publishing.Google Scholar
Tan, Samuel K. 1993. Internationalization of the Bangsamoro Struggle. Quezon City: University of the Philippines Press.Google Scholar
Tan, Samuel K. 2010. The Muslim South and Beyond. Quezon City: University of the Philippines Press.Google Scholar
Thies, Cameron G. 2004. State Building, Interstate, and Intrastate Rivalry: A Study of Post-Colonial Developing Country Extractive Efforts, 1975 2000. International Studies Quarterly 48 (1):5372.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Thies, Cameron G. 2005. War, Rivalry, and State Building in Latin America. American Journal of Political Science 49 (3):451–65.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Thies, Cameron G. 2007. The Political Economy of State Building in Sub-Saharan Africa. Journal of Politics 69 (3):716–31.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Thompson, William R., and Dreyer, David R.. 2012. Handbook of International Rivalries: 1494–2010. Los Angeles: CQ Press.Google Scholar
Tilly, Charles. 1992. Coercion, Capital, and European States: AD 990–1992. Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell.Google Scholar
Tollefsen, Andreas Forø, and Buhaug, Halvard. 2015. Insurgency and Inaccessibility. International Studies Review 17 (1):625.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Vasquez, John A. 1995. Why Do Neighbors Fight? Proximity, Interaction, or Territoriality. Journal of Peace Research 32 (3):277–93.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Vasquez, John A. 1996. Distinguishing Rivals That Go to War from Those That Do Not: A Quantitative Comparative Case Study of the Two Paths to War. International Studies Quarterly 40 (4):531–58.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Vasquez, John A. 2009. The War Puzzle Revisted. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Vasquez, John A., and Leskiw, Christopher S.. 2001. The Origins and War Proneness of Interstate Rivalries. Annual Review of Political Science 4:295316.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Vitug, Marites Danguilan, and Gloria, Glenda M.. 2000. Under the Crescent Moon: Rebellion in Mindanao. Quezon City: Ateneo Center for Social Policy and Public Affairs.Google Scholar
Walter, Barbara F. 2006. Building Reputation: Why Governments Fight Some Separatists but Not Others. American Journal of Political Science 50 (2):313–30.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Weinstein, Jeremy. 2005. Autonomous Recovery and International Intervention in Comparative Perspective. 57. Working Paper, Center for Global Development.Google Scholar
Williams, Phil. 2010. Here Be Dragons: Dangerous Spaces and International Security. In Ungoverned Spaces: Alternatives to State Authority in an Era of Softened Sovereignty, edited by Clunan, Anne L. and Trinkunas, Harold A., 3456. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press.Google Scholar
Zacher, Mark W. 2001. The Territorial Integrity Norm: International Boundaries and the Use of Force. International Organization 55 (2):215–50.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Supplementary material: File

Lee supplementary material

Lee supplementary material 1

Download Lee supplementary material(File)
File 823 KB
20
Cited by

Save article to Kindle

To save this article to your Kindle, first ensure coreplatform@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about saving to your Kindle.

Note you can select to save to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be saved to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

The International Politics of Incomplete Sovereignty: How Hostile Neighbors Weaken the State
Available formats
×

Save article to Dropbox

To save this article to your Dropbox account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you used this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your Dropbox account. Find out more about saving content to Dropbox.

The International Politics of Incomplete Sovereignty: How Hostile Neighbors Weaken the State
Available formats
×

Save article to Google Drive

To save this article to your Google Drive account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you used this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your Google Drive account. Find out more about saving content to Google Drive.

The International Politics of Incomplete Sovereignty: How Hostile Neighbors Weaken the State
Available formats
×
×

Reply to: Submit a response

Please enter your response.

Your details

Please enter a valid email address.

Conflicting interests

Do you have any conflicting interests? *