Democratic Peacebuilding: Aiding Afghanistan and other Fragile States

Hardcover | March 3, 2011

byRichard J. Ponzio

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Democratic Peacebuilding examines the evolution of international peacebuilding since the cold war, identifying the factors that limit the progress of international actors to institutionalize democratic authority and the rule of law in war-shattered societies. It gives particular attention toAfghanistan's Bonn Agreement process (2001-2005) and post-Bonn period (2006-2009), in which the country's multiple, competing forms of authority (e.g., religious leaders, tribal elders, militia commanders, and technocrats) challenged efforts to create "modern" forms of political authority rooted indemocratic norms and the rule of law. Despite the significant risks involved, this volume argues that the institutionalization of democratic legal authority can create the conditions and framework necessary to mediate competing domestic interests and to address the root causes of a conflictpeacefully. At the same time, one overlooked problem of international peacebuilding stems from the divergent conceptions, between international officials and the local population, of authority and its sources of legitimacy. By helping a conflict-affected society reconcile the inherent tensions between competing forms of authority, international peacebuilders can contribute to improved conditions for governance and a reduction in intra-state political violence. Due to high expenditures in a period of global economicuncertainty and frustrations in Afghanistan and elsewhere, democratization as an approach to conflict management and resolution is in retreat in some influential policy circles. But it is only a deepening of democracy, rather than lowering the metrics for progress and conditions for exit, that willdetermine whether fragile states are placed on a viable course toward stability and greater self-sufficiency.

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Democratic Peacebuilding examines the evolution of international peacebuilding since the cold war, identifying the factors that limit the progress of international actors to institutionalize democratic authority and the rule of law in war-shattered societies. It gives particular attention toAfghanistan's Bonn Agreement process (2001-20...

Dr. Richard Ponzio has served in United Nations peacebuilding operations in Africa, Asia, the Balkans, and South Pacific, and as a Senior Policy Analyst in the UN Peacebuilding Support Office (Executive Office of the Secretary-General, New York). He has contributed to global, South Asian, and several national human development reports...
Format:HardcoverDimensions:288 pages, 9.21 × 6.14 × 0.1 inPublished:March 3, 2011Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199594953

ISBN - 13:9780199594955

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Table of Contents

PrefaceMapsList of FiguresList of TablesList of AcronymsIntroduction: Democratization after War in RetreatPart I: Foundations1. Analytical Tools to Understand and Evaluate Democratic Authority and Rule of law Institutionalization after War2. International Peacebuilding through Democracy and Rule of Law Promotion: from the Cold War's End to the Peacebuilding CommissionPart II: Democratic Peacebuilding in Practice in Afghanistan3. Implementing the Bonn Agreement for Afghanistan, 2001 to 20054. Democratic Authority and Rule of Law Formation during and after the Bonn Agreement periodPart III: The Furture od Democratic Peacebuilding5. Democratic Peacebuilding and its Alternatives: A New Approach for Sustainable Peace?6. The Future of Afghanistan and International PeacebuildingAppendix I: Interviews ConductedAppendix II: Afghan Focus Group QuestionsAppendix III: Afghanistan Public Opinion Survey QuestionsBibliographyIndex