April 30, 2008
Dr. İdil Tunçer Kılavuz
UNDERSTANDING VIOLENT CONFLICT:A COMPARATIVE STUDY OF TAJIKISTAN AND UZBEKISTAN
The factors cited in the literature on violent conflict in general and on the Tajikistan civil war in particular as the causes of violent conflict were present both in Uzbekistan and Tajikistan, nevertheless only the latter experienced civil war. The fact that the same variables did not produce the same outcome presents an empirical puzzle. This study makes a balance of power argument. Unlike classical balance of power theories which argue that imbalances of power lead to the possibility of war, this study argues that it is the even balance of power between adversaries which leads to war. This study also analyzes the various factors which produce these balances. It argues that structure, process and network-related factors all influence the balance of power. Emerged under the influence of differently developed structure, process and network-related variables in both countries, balance of power between adversaries in Tajikistan led to war, whereas imbalance in Uzbekistan prevented the eruption of a similar violent conflict there.