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(i) A General Discussion on the Greed-Grievance Theory of Conflict
The central argument of the economic model is that greed, rather than grievance, is the underlying factor underwriting most conflicts and wars.
It argues that greed and grievance are not competitive explanations of conflict but are often alternative interpretations of the same phenomenon or shades of the same problem. Examining inferential motives rather than stated objectives, the proponents regarded rebellion as a kind of industry that generates profits from looting, so that agitators are not different from bandits or pirates. Hence, rebellion is not explained by motives, as they are often disguised, but by atypical circumstances that generate profitable opportunities. Thus, rebellion assumes different motivations, i.e., grievance versus greed, and different explanations, i.e., atypical grievances versus atypical opportunities.
This explanation contradicts the popular argument that rebellion occurs when grievances are sufficiently acute, and so much so that people want to engage in violent protest. The economic model classifies possible causes of conflict into preferences, opportunities, and perceptions. Preferences deal with conscious choices over action; opportunities, on the other hand, relate to chances that become available because of choices. In relation to rebellion, the economic model asserts that violent actions as a means to attain specific objectives may be explained as consequent upon possible prospects for an unintended beneficial outcome. The model concludes that, more often than not, seemingly unintended beneficial outcomes rather than the stated objectives underwrite conflicts and wars.
The model is not denying the existence of objective grievances, but that conflict actors may have a wrong perception about the conflict. They can also have a wrong or misperceived view of opportunities to achieve redress for their grievances. Wrong perception is not only applicable to grievance, but also opportunities for redress.
Where this is the case, rebellion becomes unprofitable and would collapse, perhaps before it reaches the threshold of civil war. By contrast, when misperceived or exaggerated grievances trigger rebellion, conflicts and civil wars would not clear or dispel misperceptions. They may, indeed, generate or create genuine grievances.
Misperception of grievances and opportunity for rebellion are common, and all societies have groups with exaggerated grievances and, frequently, misperceived opportunities for rebellion.
Whether grievances are exaggerated or opportunities for rebellion are misperceived, perceived or stated motives by conflict actors would not explain the incidence of rebellion, as, in the first place, the premises upon which grievances or rebellion are based are faulty.
Invariably, groups with exaggerated grievances or misperceived opportunity for rebellion exist in societies where there are atypical opportunities to benefit from rebellion and where there is a viability for a successful rebellion. In such societies, rebellions would be conducted by viable not-for-profit organizations, pursuing misperceived agendas by violent means.
(ii) At least, one sample conflicts
(iii) A discussion of each of the elements mentioned or identified in the general discussion in relation to the example(s) of conflict given in. These MUST include
(a) the stated goal(s) of the conflict groups – this is the same as objective grievance(s),
(b) inferential motives,
(c) atypical opportunities – the same as when the conflict broke out,
(d) opportunities for profit – the same as looting,
(e) preferences – the same as alternative options to physical violence and the choice made by the conflict actors,
(f) perception – how the conflict groups/actors perceived their grievances, and opportunities.
Based on the breakdown that I did above, rewrite this in the form of an essay using a conflict of your own choice and submit as email attachment.