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Drug Trafficking, Violence, and Instability

Authored by Dr. Phil Williams, Dr. Vanda Felbab-Brown.

Drug Trafficking, Violence, an... Cover Image

Brief Synopsis

Although challenges posed by various kinds of violent armed groups initially appear highly diverse and unrelated to one another, in fact they all reflect the increasing connections between security and governance and, in particular, the relationship between poor governance and violent armed groups. In many cases, these groups are overtly challenging the state; in others they are cooperating and colluding with state structures while subtly undermining them; in yet others, the state is a passive bystander while violent armed groups are fighting one another. The mix is different, the combinations vary, and the perpetrators of violence have different motives, methods, and targets. In spite of their divergent forms, violent nonstate actors (VNSAs) share certain qualities and characteristics. These violent armed groups represent a common challenge to national and international security, a challenge that is far greater than the sum of the individual groups, and that is likely to grow rather than diminish over the next several decades. This monograph focuses on the complex relationship between human security, crime, illicit economies, and law enforcement. It also seeks to disentangle the linkages between insurgency on the one hand and drug trafficking and organized crime on the other, suggesting that criminal activities help sustain an insurgency, but also carry certain risks for the insurgency.

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Also by the Authors/Editor:

Military Contingencies in Megacities and Sub-Megacities
Cyberspace: Malevolent Actors, Criminal Opportunities, and Strategic Competition
Criminals, Militias, and Insurgents: Organized Crime in Iraq
From the New Middle Ages to a New Dark Age: The Decline of the State and U.S. Strategy

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Central Asia

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