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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Modalities of Civil-Military Stability in Africa
Author:Decalo, Samuel
Periodical:Journal of Modern African Studies
Geographic terms:Subsaharan Africa
Subjects:political stability
civil-military relations
Military, Defense and Arms
Politics and Government
Abstract:A survey of the political, socioeconomic, and intramilitary characteristics of 12 stable civilian systems in Africa - Botswana, Cameroon, Côte d'Ivoire, Gabon, The Gambia, Kenya, Malawi, Mauritius, Senegal, Swaziland, Tanzania, and Zambia - reveals that as a group they are quite heterogeneous. Only on two dimensions - quality of civilian leadership and patterns of economic growth - are most, but still not all, intrinsically different from neighbouring States with chronic histories of coups and military rule. Seven specific factors and control mechanisms have played a role in assuring the civilian subordination of the military in the 12 regimes that have been analysed. Although no single policy, or any combination, can account for the stability attained in all, three subgroupings suggest themselves: 1) regimes that are stabilized by the deterrent implicit in treaties of military cooperation and mutual defence with a credible external power; 2) regimes that have symbiotically integrated their armed forces in the distribution of the spoils of political office; and 3) regimes that have so legitimized their leadership hierarchy that this both attracts obedience and loyalty, as well as deters power gambits. Notes, ref.