Diasporas in Conflict: Peacemakers or Peace Wreckers?

Sample Chapter
  • Edited Hazel Smith and Paul Stares

    Disaporas in Conflict
    ISBN-10: 92-808-1140-1,
    ISBN-13: 978-92-808-1140-7
    United Nations University Press
    February 2007

    Diasporas can have a positive and a negative impact on international politics. Groups of exiles, refugees, migrants and other forms of diaspora populations play a part in the processes and outcomes of international politics in both their native and adopted countries.

    Diasporas can secure tangible and intangible resources to fuel armed conflicts, and they can provide opaque institutional and network structures that enable the transfer of arms and money to terrorist groups. More positively, diasporas can give humanitarian assistance to victims of conflict and they also support post-war reconstruction efforts. Diasporas have the potential to make powerful contributions to peace and reconciliation.

    This book investigates the diverse roles of diasporas in different phases of conflict, including pre-conflict and escalatory phases, hot conflict, peacemaking and peace-building. The contributors identify patterns of diaspora intervention in conflicts and focus on leverage points for constructive interventions by global policymakers. The book brings together globally authoritative voices in the study of diasporas from the diverse disciplines of political science, sociology, cultural studies, literary theory, feminist theory and anthropology.


    Hazel Smith is Professor of International Relations at the University of Warwick, UK. Paul Stares is Director of Research and Studies at the United States Institute of Peace.

    Contents Overview

    • Introduction, Hazel Smith and Paul Stares

    The analytical and conceptual framework

    • Diasporas in International Conflict, Hazel Smith
    • A neglected relationship: Diasporas and conflict resolution, Jacob Bercovitch
    • Gender, diasporas and Post Cold War Conflict, Nadje S. Al-Ali

    The case studies

    • The Jewish Diaspora and the Arab-Palestinian-Israeli conflict, Gabi Scheffer
    • The Palestinian Diaspora, Mohammed A. Bamyeh
    • The Armenian diaspora and the Karabagh conflict, from 1988 to the future, Khachig Tololyan
    • A reluctant diaspora? The case of Colombia, Virginia Bouvier
    • The Cuban diaspora, Jean Grugel and Henry Kippin
    • The Sri Lankan Tamil diaspora: Sustaining conflict and pushing for peace, Christine Fair
    • Kurdish interventions in the Iraq war, Denise Natali
    • Mobilised Croatian diaspora: its role in Homeland Politics and War, Zlatko Skrbiš
    • African diasporas and post-Conflict Reconstruction: An Eritrean case study, Khalid Koser
    • Political Remittance: Cambodian Diasporas in Conflict and post-Conflict, Khatharya Um