Distinguishing Rivals that Go to War from Those that Do Not: A Quantitative Comparative Case Study of Two Paths to War
Point: There are some rivalries that do not enter war with each other. The article explains that if rivalries do not escalate to war then there are no territorial disputes between them. Rivals not in territorial disputes engage in war only by participating in a multilateral war.
Vasquez argues that territorial dispute is a critical issue in dyadic rivalry warfare. Territorial dispute exist if one side make a direct territorial claim to an area that they do not currently control. Such a dispute should make rivals more likely to enter war. Rivals can also enter war with each other for non-territorial reasons. A dyadic war can expand to other states. Alliance commitments or other political events cause additional states to join a war. Therefore, there are two ways for rivals to be in a war. There warring rivals are either in a territorial dispute or they are engaged in a multilateral war.
The results show that whenever a rivalry is contiguous there was always a war and when a rivalry was noncontiguous there was no dyadic war. According to two of the rivalry data rivalries that shared borders did war each other and rivalries that were noncontiguous did not have any dyadic wars. All of the noncontiguous rivalry wars that did occur were multilateral wars.
In conclusion, whether the rivals are contiguous or not is a major indicator of war in a rivalry. Also noncontiguous rivals tend to fight each other through multilateral wars. All rivalry wars have been shown to be either contiguous (territorial disputes) and/or complex wars involving other states.