Recovery from Armed Conflict in Developing Countries

Recovery from Armed Conflict in Developing Countries

Recovery from Armed Conflict in Developing Countries

Recovery from Armed Conflict in Developing Countries


This comprehensive work examines ways in which developing countries may achieve economic, political and social reconstruction in the wake of armed conflict. International researchers discuss such issues as women and children in the recovery process, refugees and the role of aid, the reintegration of ex-combatants and community-led recovery. Case studies focus upon Afghanistan, Angola, Cambodia, Mozambique, South Africa and Sri Lanka.


I wrote this preface in April 1997 on ANZAC day. This day, it is often said, marks the coming of age of Australia and New Zealand as nations, being the anniversary of landings of their troops on the Gallipoli Peninsula in 1915.

Peace has come to Gallipoli. The peninsula is a national park, dedicated to the memory of the tens of thousands of soldiers buried there. It is a quiet, almost eerie place, and the natural landscape is still marked by the scars of war. It is also a compelling place and my visit there in 1990 provided some of the motivation to put this book together.

There are a number of other motivations. My work as an academic development economist has increasingly led me to focus on what the UNDP terms ‘human development’, rather than the means of achieving this objective (economic growth). Hundreds of millions of people live in absolute poverty. Preparation for war, actual fighting and its aftermath are significant contributors to this poverty. Any disciplinary study worth its salt, as C. S. Lewis once wrote, must contribute to the pleasure of a household sharing a meal together, two friends talking over a drink or a person relaxing with a good book. My more recent involvement in peace studies has brought home to me the importance of examining alternative ways - cost-effective ways in economic terminology - of achieving security within and between countries. Military expenditure is, after all, only one way of trying to achieve security; it is undoubtedly costly and its effectiveness is open to debate.

Then there are people - I think of Bill Stent, Bernard “Swan, Rebecca Spence, Max Lawson, Naihuwo Ahai, Jobson Misang, Lanka Lankaneson, Cynthia Bird, Bert Jenkins, John Mumford and Swee Hin Toh in particular - who have informed and encouraged me in my attempt to contribute to a more peaceful and just world (and if I sound presumptuous here, I am not apologetic: I believe that we all have to consciously work for peace and justice in our own places and in our own ways). I want to also acknowledge here the wonderfully experienced and motivated postgraduate students who have come through our Peace Studies program in recent years. Neryl Lewis, who has authored a number of chapters in this book, deserves special mention. My job, as I often say, has largely been to provide a framework

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