When a single international actor challenges the aggressor, the probability that the killings will escalate drops while the probability that the killings will decrease jumps. Each additional intervention by another international actor raises the chance of saving lives. Krain's study examines factors affecting all ongoing instances of state-sponsored mass murder from 1955 to 1997 and simulates the effects of interventions on two cases, including the current case of mass murder in Darfur, Sudan. His results also confirm that attempts to intervene as impartial parties seem ineffective. "By finding that increasing the number of interventions against perpetrators of genocide or politicide reduces severity this study confirms that international interventions against perpetrators do save lives," Krain concludes.
This study is published in the September issue of International Studies Quarterly. Media wishing to receive a PDF of this article please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Matthew Krain is associate professor of Political Science and chair of the International Relations Program at the College of Wooster. He specializes in the study of contentious politics and large-scale political violence and has written scholarly books and articles on repression, human rights violations, revolutions, civil wars, and genocide and politicide.
Dr. Krain is available for questions and interviews.