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Stick to the plan? Culture, interests, multidimensional threats, and Italian defence policy

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  05 July 2017

Michela Ceccorulli
Department of Political and Social Sciences, University of Bologna, Bologna, Italy
Fabrizio Coticchia*
Department of Political Science, University of Genoa, Genoa, Italy
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The international context seems to be increasingly exposed to multidimensional and transnational challenges, ranging from irregular migration and piracy to the violation of basic human rights. Rather than excluding a potential role for the military, many European states rely on it to face a complex security scenario. What are the reasons behind this activism? Taking Italy as a case study, this article works out two main arguments (ideational factors and interests relating to the so-called military–industrial complex) and tries to intercept their weight in the national debate leading to the decision to intervene militarily (or not) in Sri Lanka (2004–05), Haiti (2010), and in the Central Mediterranean (2015–). Ultimately, this effort contributes to understanding the role of the military instrument in Italy, a state particularly exposed to the new challenges ahead, and offers tools for research to be potentially applied in other countries that make similar use of armed forces to deal with non-conventional security threats.

Research Article
© Società Italiana di Scienza Politica 2017 

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