Civil-Military Cooperation in Conflict and Post-Conflict Zones: Needed Marriage Also for Small States?
Rok Zupančič, Associate Research Fellow of the IIR, is the author of the article "Civil-Military Cooperation in Conflict and Post-Conflict Zones: Needed Marriage Also for Small States? The Case Study of Slovenian Armed Forces in Kosovo and Afghanistan" published in The Journal of Slavic Military Studies (Volume 28, Issue 3, 2015).
"The role of small states in international relations, aspiring to enter into international society as a credible actor, is often measured through their contribution to international security. Slovenia, as a small state, has presumed its ‘well-deserved place’ in the international community could be reached by becoming a trustworthy member of NATO. Among other things, this has meant aligning state policies with those of the political-military organization and so becoming a ‘like-minded’ member of the prestigious club. One of the steps Slovenia has done in this regard was the deployment of its civilian experts to the NATO-led missions to Kosovo and Afghanistan; they were integrated into the contingents of the Slovenian Armed Forces. With this, Slovenian civil-military cooperation in conflict and post-conflict areas has begun, following NATO’s request to contribute not only armed forces but also civilian experts. This article analyzes the development of civil-military cooperation in Slovenia and explores how has it evolved from relatively poorly planned and unorganized attempts to a more structured and better coordinated ‘business’ of a small state in fragile societies. The relationship between the Slovenian military and Slovenian civilian experts from the perspective of ‘being forced to work together’ within the stabilization efforts in Kosovo and Afghanistan is the main focus of this article. The article’s findings, built on interviewing and surveying of Slovenian military commanders and civilian experts, are relevant for a better understanding of small states’ behavior in international relations and military sociology in conflict and post-conflict zones."
About the author: Rok Zupančič is the IIR Associate Research Fellow and among his ares of interest are for example the conflict studies, conflict prevention, conflict resolution or reconciliation.