Conflict Trap essay

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One of the biggest blows to development is being caught in a conflict trap, which leads to the act of isolationism. Isolationism is a policy doctrine employable by any country that needs to restrain from interfering with the affairs of other countries or other native citizens. Through isolation the government may engage in alliances that force them to take sides in case of a conflict. Isolationist state cites the need to focus on its internal development and structuring of the local production forces towards advancement of its economy. This policy became clear during the Civil War when America sought to isolate the African Americans in developmental issues thus making them to get trapped as a result of conflict. “Conflict trap became apparent when many African Americans became trapped in a vicious cycle of debt following the civil war” (Regan, 2000).

As a result of the sharecrop movement after Civil War, the cycle of debt grew enormously. During and after the Civil War, the newly freed slaves were able to rent chunks of land from plantation owners. Nonetheless, the large plantation owners required the freed slaves to pay the rent with a small grace period and a large percentage of the crops. Moreover, the plantation owners demanded an extension of credit to the African Americans, yet, forcing them to pay down the loans through forced labor. In the process, the debt continued to grow thus requiring them to stay at the plantation and continue to work for the plantation owners. “Out of the civil war, things like social exclusion, discrimination, poverty, inequality, and other sources of grievances exist within most societies” (Aaron, & Schofer, 2003).

In Egypt, the Egyptian Revolution of 1952, which was a coup d’état, became a conflict trap in the sense that coups are usually a menace to democracy. The post-coup trajectory in Egypt led to violence and there was little to cheer about” (Henry & Van De Walle, 1989). The reason why the Egyptian Revolution became a conflict trap was because it was an instrument or a threat to democracy. In such transitions, many people are bound to die, become repressed, and the political vendettas are at times part of the consequences (Collier, 2003). This is because most coups involve the threat or use of force. The society then suffers all the consequences as a result of such conflict traps.  

To conclude, it is a fact that internal armed conflict breeds conflict. This is because it creates chances that lead to eruption of wars. The eruptions of wars are some the consequences that citizens are left trapped in. Conflict trap works under numerous channels such as polarize populations and build-up of resentments that cause future warfare. These channel have numerous challenges to the development of the country’s socio-economical status thus affecting many citizens.

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