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Rethinking Proxy War Theory in IR: A Critical Analysis of Principal–Agent Theory

Version 2 2024-06-13, 14:52
Version 1 2021-11-17, 08:15
journal contribution
posted on 2024-06-13, 14:52 authored by Abbas Farasoo
Abstract This paper explores the question of what drives proxy alignment in war and argues that current proxy war scholarship needs further thinking to go beyond focusing on the principal–agent theory and individual actors’ motivation analysis. Rather, there is a need to look at the generative mechanisms of proxy alignment as a process that constitutes patterns of friend–enemy relations. The paper argues securitization patterns from domestic to regional and international levels drive actors to re-evaluate their positions and define their enemies and friends. This is a process of securitization alignment and confluence, which serves as a generative mechanism for proxy alignment in a conflict. Securitization alignment is based on a convergence of securitizations by different actors that create a friend–enemy dynamic and convergence of security interests between actors. The confluence of securitizations from the domestic level to regional and beyond also connects actors across different levels to be in alignment and impact the conflict.

History

Journal

International Studies Review

Volume

23

Pagination

1835-1858

Location

Oxford, Eng.

ISSN

1521-9488

eISSN

1468-2486

Language

eng

Publication classification

C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal

Issue

4

Publisher

Oxford University Press (OUP)

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