Clusters composed of a democratic state surrounded by autocratic states may be particularly conflict prone. If so, were Iraq to become an established democracy in the midst of mostly nondemocratic contiguous neighbors, we may expect increased conflict within the cluster. The current study, using COW and Polity data, analyzes 142 clusters over an extended period and finds support for the proposition that heterogeneous clusters with autocracies surrounding a democracy tend to be conflictual.
Preface; Acknowledgments; 1. Introduction: Calamitous Clusters; 2. Three Streams of Literature; The Democratic Peace; Contiguity; Middle East Studies; 3. Cluster Propositions; Constructing Clusters; The Dependent Variable: MIDs and Wars; The Independent Variable: POLITY; Control Variables: Leave the Kitchen Sink at Home; Descriptive Statistics; 4. Testing Cluster Propositions; Who Initiates the Conflicts?; Will a Democratic Iraq Increase Conflict?; 5. Pausing for Provisos; Nonlinearity; Probabilistic Theory; MID Data; Alternative Explanations; 6. Do We Want Democracy in Iraq?; Appendix A; Entry Year of Clusters; Bibliography; Index.