Democracies and Small Wars

BESA Studies in International Security


Democracies and Small Wars deals with an area of increasing importance in international relations. The growing disparities in technological and economic capabilities and the consequent asymmetries in military power are likely to increase the incidence of small wars, the classic ‘poor man’s war’, in case of unresolved conflict. However, despite the omnipresence of small wars, often called low-intensity conflicts, military establishments still prepare mostly for large-scale conventional war. As several essays in this volume document, more often than not they are ill prepared to meet the exigencies of small wars in terms of structure, equipment and training.

The volume addresses the challenges faced by democracies in the conduct of small wars, and also suggests ways to improve performance through awareness of the vulnerabilities of democracies in fighting protracted, limited armed conflicts against non-conventional armed forces. This collection also looks at several case studies, examining perspectives of the state and the insurgent: the United States, India, Turkey, Greece, Israel and Northern Ireland.

225 pages, 2003

Hardback ISBN: 0714655341 Price: £75.00
Paperback ISBN: 0714684236 Price: £22.99

Prof. Efraim Inbar

Prof. Efraim Inbar

(Ph.D. University of Chicago) Director of the BESA Center. A veteran authority on the Arab-Israeli conflict and strategic developments in the Mideast.