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The Duration of Interstate Wars, 1816-1985

D. Scott Bennett and Allan C. Stam III
The American Political Science Review
Vol. 90, No. 2 (Jun., 1996), pp. 239-257
DOI: 10.2307/2082882
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2082882
Page Count: 19
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The Duration of Interstate Wars, 1816-1985
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Abstract

We present a model of war duration which incorporates both realpolitik and domestic political variables. We hypothesize that strategy, terrain, capabilities, and government type, among other variables, will play key roles in determining the duration of war. We test these hypotheses using hazard analysis and find empirical support for our key arguments. We find that the realpolitik variables play a greater role than regime behavior and type in determining war duration. We also find that historically, on average, mobilization and strategic surprise have little effect on war duration and that wars are not duration dependent.

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