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Title: The United States, PMSCs and the state monopoly on violence: Leading the way towards norm change
Authors: Krahmann, E
Keywords: Private security;PMSC;State monopoly on violence;Norm change;United States
Issue Date: 2013
Publisher: Sage Publications Ltd
Citation: Security Dialogue, 44(1), 53 - 71, 2013
Abstract: The proliferation of private military and security companies (PMSCs) in Iraq and Afghanistan has raised many questions regarding the use of armed force by private contractors. This article addresses the question of whether the increased acceptance of PMSCs indicates a transformation of the international norm regarding the state monopoly on the legitimate use of armed force. Drawing on theoretical approaches to the analysis of norm change, the article employs four measures to investigate possible changes in the strength and meaning of this norm: modifications in state behaviour, state responses to norm violation, the promulgation of varying interpretations of the norm in national and international laws and regulations, and changes in norm discourse. Based on an analysis of empirical evidence from the United States of America and its allies, the article concludes that these measures suggest that the USA is leading the way towards a transformation of the international norm of the state monopoly on violence, involving a revised meaning. Although this understanding has not yet been formally implemented in international law, it has allowed a growing number of countries to tolerate, accept or legalize the use of armed force by PMSCs in the international arena.
Description: This is the author's accepted manuscript. The final published article is available from the link below. Copyright @ 2013 Sage.
ISSN: 0967-0106
Appears in Collections:Politics and International Relations
Dept of Politics, History and Law Research Papers

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