Turmoil among nations will increase during the coming decades, but wars between states will almost vanish. This prediction rests on the premise that in many of the new "quasi-states" (Jackson 1990) born from the collapse of modern empires we find weak authoritarianism combined with anarchy [TAN1].*
These categorical hypotheses need to be qualified because all democracies are not the same and some, more than others, can cope successfully with the turmoil that ethnic nationalism -- based on the widespread appeal of Western inspired norms of national self-determination -- has produced in the multi-ethnic states liberated from colonial domination. Ultimately, "...every nationalism, large- or small-scale, is rooted and anchored in ethnicity..." as Norbu (1992, 182) has written.
Nevertheless, other variables also need to be considered, including especially how Western nationalism and imperialism were linked to the rise and global impact of the industrial revolution, how the contemporary world capitalist system impinges on peripheral states and economies, and how new technologies of communication, information, organization, and weapons of mass destruction reinforce the mobilization of ethnic nationalism.
Focus and Clarity. A full discussion of all these factors would take a book. In a short paper, one can only focus on a narrow theme and I will spotlight the growing scale of turmoil among nations: its causes and consequences. Unfortunately, it is not easy to explain the meaning of this phrase without discussing the key concepts and terms available for our use, starting with the notion of a nation.
This word can meet our needs only after we agree about the basic difference between states [TAN2] and ethnic nations [TAN3]. Both are often called nations, but this word is typically used to mean only one or the other concept, not both simultaneously. For example, the name of the "United Nations," reflects the use of 'nation' as a synonym for 'state,' and only states are nations in the UN vocabulary. By contrast, ethnic Hawaiians, Kurds, Armenians, Palestinians, Zulus, and Pushtuns also think of themselves as 'nations,' even though they are not recognized as states in the UN system. In this usage, most nations are not states. A disciplinary bias reinforces this ambiguity since political scientists typically mean a state when they speak of a 'nation,' but anthropologists are more likely to mean an ethnic nation. The word, ethnonation is sometimes used to designate a particular kind of ethnic nation but I shall not make any such distinction here, and the two terms will be treated as equivalents. Unless qualified, therefore, we need to remember that "nation" can mean either a state or an ethnic nation.
Moreover, we need to remember that ethnic nations exist at two linked levels: as "homeland nations" or anasporas [TAN3a] comprising all members living in their traditional homeland. By contrast, we can use diaspora (or dispersion) TAN3B] to refer to members of an ethnic nation living outside their traditional homeland. Acceptance of "anaspora" as a neologism will enable us to distinguish clearly between the members of an ethnic nation who live in their traditional domain and those living elsewhere, its diaspora. Thus, we may speak of all Francophones in Quebec as an "anaspora," but all Canadian Francophones living outside Quebec might be regarded as their diaspora. Even this is not precise because many non-Quebecois Francophones living in Canada outside Quebec have never had a connection with that province. However, the distinction seems generally useful and exceptional situations could more easily be explained if we were to accept the neologism.
A discussion of each of these key words will be found in the endnotes. Because these conceptual and terminological problems must be solved in order to overcome misconceptions built into conventional usages, they are treated in some detail and the endnotes therefore take up more space than the main text. This reflects the fact that I have presented the main substantive arguments elsewhere (Riggs 1995a/b), but I was unable to examine their terminological implications in these articles. Readers are warned that if they do not understand the distinctions offered here, much of the text will seem obscure. However, I believe that the extra effort required to learn a few new concepts and terms will be more than repaid by the clarification of important problems that can subsequently be achieved.
Nations: both States and Ethnic Nations. Instead of claiming that nation should refer only to a state or only to an ethnic nation, I shall use this word to include both -- this is a departure from conventional usage but it permits us to speak meaningfully about the growing "turmoil among nations" that will embroil all of us for decades to come. In the text that follows, I shall use nation (or generic nation) [TAN4] only to mean any community of persons who define their political identity by exercising sovereignty or by claiming the right to exercise it -- i.e. to include both 'states' and 'ethnic nations'. This is a more generic concept and a necessary one -- but we lack any established term except "nation" that can designate both.
To avoid ambiguity in contexts where readers might assume that "nation" refers either to a state or an ethnic nation, we could use generic nation to underline the point that the broader concept which includes both narower concepts is intended. I believe the generic concept will become increasingly important in the years ahead and it is therefore important for us to have a term that can be used to include both states and ethnic nations. It is paradoxical that the familiar term that can be used for each of these more specific concepts is not also used for the more generic one. In context, it can clearly mean both, but we also need the unequivocal term, "generic nation", to guard against ambiguity.
To repeat, the concept of a generic nation includes all recognized states (whether or not they are composed of only one ethnic nation) plus any ethnic nation composed of persons sharing some ascriptive marker (such as common ancestry, language, religion, or race) who claim sovereignty for their members. Accordingly, the nations of the world today include not only the 200 or so states that belong to the UN today, plus a substantial number of "ethnonationalist peoples" (ethnic nations) -- about 80 were recognized by Gurr and Harff (1994, 18) -- and an even larger number of "indigenous peoples," many of whom will increasingly demand independence or autonomy during the coming decades, thereby becoming ethnic nations.
Instead of arguing that nation should refer either to states or to ethnic nations, can we agree to use the word for both? Such an agreement would help us talk about one of the most crucial problems facing the world today. Although we shall no doubt continue to see conflicts between states and a few struggles between ethnic nations, I think the most common form of conflict between nations will involve clashes between states and ethnic nations. The number of ethnic nations demanding their independence or autonomy from existing states, or boundary changes between states, will surely exceed the 105 (81 + 24) cases already identified by Gurr and Harff.
Consider that the Chechens demanded their independence from the Russian Federation in 1991, but their aspirations only later become front page news around the world when Moscow sought to bomb them into submission. We are unaware of many such conflicts that are already simmering because they have been ignored by the mass media, or their potential leaders have not yet stepped forward to claim their sovereign independence. A growing number of Chechnyas will mushroom during the years ahead. Such conflicts between states and ethnic nations are, assuredly, not just isolated events with purely local causes and consequences. Rather, they are part of a global movement with deep historical roots.
The concept of a "nation" [TAN4 that includes both states [TAN2] and ethnic nations [TAN3] will help us understand both the genesis and the fruition of this historic process as it generates growing turmoil among nations.
However, the new states that resulted are almost always heterogeneous multi-ethnic mixtures and their governments are weak and authoritarian, a formula that invites ethnonational revolts in the name of self-determination, [TAN6] a goal inspired by Western nationalism itself. Ethnic heterogeneity, of course, impairs the ability of a state to govern effectively, confirming Norbu's conclusion that "...ethnic nationalism poses a serious threat to the territorial integrity and political legitimacy of multinational states" (1992, 184). These relationships, of course, are interactive: weakness provokes rebellions but rebellions magnify political failures, truly a vicious circle.
National States. The long-term project of state-formation, democratization and industrialization in the West was rooted in the principles of nationalism. It was based, at first, on a struggle to unify feudal domains into powerful national states [TAN7]. This concept needs to be clearly distinguished from that of a state that, often enough, is also called a "nation state" [TAN2]-- a phrase I like to avoid because of its profound ambiguity. However, admittedly it resembles the unambiguous phrase, "national state." Careless users may not remember the distinction in which case we should hunt for a synonym that could be remembered more easily. What should it be?
We also need to recognize the concept of a state that succeeds (more or less) in transforming its subjects into members of a single national state. We can refer to it as a state nation. [TAN7A]. During the 19th century, for example, France was able to assimilate many non-French speaking nationals into the French ethnic nation. Similarly, in America, the "melting pot" policy led many immigrants to identify themselves as members of an emergent American "nation." The success of a state nation can be determined by reference to the patriotism of its citizens, the extent of their state nationalism [TAN5A]. Clearly many states have failed to generate such patriotic fervor -- think, for example of Czechoslovakia as a 20th century example of a state where ethnic nationalism prevailed over state nationalism and led to the recent partitioning of this country.
Some state nations also tried to expand their size by annexing foreign territories -- the German seizure of Austria in 1938 might be seen as an example. However, much more often, ambitious states -- France, Britain, America, Russia, Japan -- conquered heterogeneous peoples and created empires in which, not surprisingly, they failed in whatever efforts they may have made to transform them into nationals of the imperial power. Prior to their annexation (unification) the peoples involved were not divided ethnonations [TAN8] (as in the German/Austrian case) but separate socio-cultural communities who sometimes became assimilated to the language, life-style and culture of the dominant community and its elites (Deutsch 1953, Feigenbaum 1995), although in most cases of imperial conquest, they resisted integration with their metropoles and, instead, developed their separate ethnic national identities.
The expansionist drive that generated the modern empires (where state nationalism had succeeded) drew much of its thrust from the ambition of increasingly powerful bourgeois elites to expand the scale of their activities so as to assure unrestricted access to raw materials and markets, starting in the domestic arena and progressing to global expansionism. This drive went far beyond simple trade: it reflected the essential dynamics of industrialization, based on new technologies of mass production, the need for raw materials and expanded markets, the availability of cheap labor and the marketization of land, plus the capacity to produce the new weapons and resources that permitted the conquest of pre-industrial peoples around the world (Riggs 1995a).
The rise of powerful merchant communities in Europe was globally unprecedented. As Curtin (1984) has explained in historical depth, diaspora merchant communities plied their trade throughout the world for thousands of years but always in a condition of political dependency. Although they might rule small city states, they were politically marginalized in all the traditional empires, and their trading cities survived only because the imperial authorities found them to be useful sources of cherished goods.
In medieval Western Europe, by contrast, merchant settlements, based on riverine and coastal burgs were able, with the protection of the bishops, to evolve into wealthy trading cities (Pirenne 1956) that could maintain their independence from fragmented feudal domains. Their isolation from the major civilizations of China, India and the Levant by Islamic power provided a powerful motivator for these developments. Eventually, alliances were established between affluent burgers and ambitious kings, leading by the 18th and 19th centuries to the emergence of centralized states able to dominate neighboring principalities -- for more details see (Riggs 1995a).
Bourgeois Power. In exchange for their financial support, the growing bourgeoisie received the political protection, security for investments and for accumulated capital, plus a fluid supply of labor (Polanyi 1957) that enabled them to initiate industrial enterprises and, gradually, to launch the industrial revolution. For the first time, bourgeois communities gained enough power to safeguard and utilize the investments that made industrialization possible.
Meanwhile, the increasing productivity and new technologies produced by the industrial revolution supported the high costs of military adventures designed both to satisfy imperial ambitions and to provide new sources of the raw materials and markets that industrialization required. Simultaneously, industrial productivity required a growing supply of educated workers and furnished the resources needed to finance an expanding school system. These dynamics transformed non-nationals into nationals [TAN9] as soldiers, students and others learned the cultural norms and language spoken by the dominant elites. Insofar as this cultural amalgamation occurred within the boundaries of a state, its citizens, regardless of cultural background, became state nationals. [TAN9A]. By contrast, activist leaders of conquered peoples frequently organized and mobilized subject peoples who learned to accept a new status as ethnic nationals. [TAN9B].
Some of them became nationalists [TAN10] who succeeded in creating liberation movements that were able to gain their political independence of the imperial powers that had conquered them. However, when speaking of nationalists we need to distinguish between those who provide leadership in established states and those who mobilize conquered peoples. We may refer to the former as state nationalists [TAN10a] and to the latter as ethnic nationalists [TAN10B].
During the period of mercantilism, European merchants and rulers joined forces to promote trade with far-away places, such as China, India and Southeast Asia, a process that also brought the conquered lands of the New World within their domains. Subsequently, the split between increasingly powerful bourgeois forces and monarchies contributed fundamentally to the industrial revolution, the birth of modern democracies, and the rise of nationalism. Nationalism evolved as an ideology that could mobilize the popular support needed both for industrialization and for the triumph of representative institutions that could be substituted for monarchic absolutism. Mass mobilization undermined royal power and lead to the triumph of democracy, often in constitutional monarchies, and sometimes in republics where elected heads of state replaced hereditary rulers.
It was widely believed that industrialization and democracy both required the assimilation of all citizens into a state nation [TAN7A] that could, thereby, become a national state [TAN7]. However, as we know, not all Europeans were absorbed into the core national states of Europe -- Britain, France, Germany, Italy. Many resisted successfully, and their small-scale non-national states survive today: consider the Low Countries, Switzerland, Scandinavia, Eastern Europe and the Balkans. Despite the success of national unification in France, many French citizens never became truly "French."
Moreover, there were French ethnic nationals [TAN9B] living in Geneva who became Swiss citizens. The Swiss model is a striking contrast to the French: in Switzerland a highly decentralized confederation first enhanced local autonomy or independence, and when a democratic union was created in 1848, the principles of federalism, local autonomy and proportional representation -- plus direct democracy via referenda -- assured the preservation of a multi-ethnic society (Linder 1944). By contrast, in the multi-ethnic Balkans and Central Europe, the spread of nationalism within the more-or-less traditional Ottoman and Austro-Hungarian empires led to persistent turmoil without national unification on the French model or confederal democracy on the Swiss model. The collapse of these empires as well as, more recently, the demise of the modern empires, have combined to generate the turmoil among nations that we see today.
A root cause of this turmoil can be found in the rise of ethnic nationalism [TAN5B] among conquered peoples. As we shall see, this form of nationalism can arise at two levels: within the homeland of an ethnic community [TAN10BA] and among its diaspora peoples [TAN10BB]. Although they are often linked, they sometimes occur independently and in conflict with each other -- we may call the nationalism of a territory's residents homeland ethnonationalism [TAN5BA] by contrast with that of persons living outside that territory, i.e. diaspora nationalism. [TAN5BB]. The grounds for ethnic nationalism in the successor states formed by the collapse of modern empires can be understood more easily if we first think about the dynamics of imperialism itself.
Modern Empires. Without the drive of nationalism, the smaller states of Europe were unable to create empires -- except, perhaps, for Belgium and the Netherlands, but they were able to experience the closely linked processes of democratization and industrialization. But where state nationalism succeeded, it fueled the ideological drives of modern imperialism. Without it, neither the ambitions of kings nor the capitalist aims of merchants could generate the necessary mass support for costly overseas ventures. But where economic incentives were cloaked in ideologies that glorified nationalism and rationalized imperialism as a "manifest destiny" or "civilizing mission," a mass base for imperial conquests evolved that was rooted, paradoxically, in democratic or populist ideals and practices.
The gradual emergence of national states [TAN7] in 19th century Europe, both as an ideal and a reality, was both a consequence and a cause of the militant centralization of power in a few modern states [TAN2] and their subsequent overseas conquests. The ideological arguments that popularized the nationalist movements have been well described by Hayes (1931), Kohn (1945) and Deutsch (1953) among many others -- see also Gellner (1983; 1987). Their links with imperial expansion has remained almost unnoticed.
In each case, the detailed narrative differs. However, the French case, as Feigenbaum (1995) describes it, may be prototypical. A centralized state was able, during the 19th century, to re-socialize many non-French-speaking citizens, mainly through membership of the armed forces and enrollment in public schools. They came to speak French and to think of themselves as "French" people.
By the beginning of the 20th century, it had became possible to think of all French citizens as French, and even to assume that all French people lived in France or were French citizens. The creation of a national state was a highly prized goal of French nationalists. It provided a rationalization for the goal of spreading French "civilization" to many conquered lands where, hopefully, all the conquered people would, in due time, become "French." Similar aspirations prevailed in the other nation-building states of Europe and in the American "melting pot." No doubt, the idealized situation (which never fully corresponded to reality) remains a goal for some of the new states -- Israel, for example, offers citizenship and teaches Hebrew to all Jews, while marginalizing the non-Jews living in Palestine.
As power shifted from autocratic monarchs, landed aristocracies and religious establishments to the bourgeoisie, basic political changes followed. It was no longer acceptable to vest sovereign power in royal families, sustained by the supernatural sanctions religious authorities could provide. Instead, secular myths of popular sovereignty, individual rights and democratic governance based on majority rule began to prevail throughout Western Europe by the middle of the 19th century, as they had earlier in America, France and England.
The close link between nationalism and democracy is well described by Greenfeld (1992) who writes: "The location of sovereignty within the people" and recognition of "the fundamental equality" among them "... constitute the essence of the modern national idea [and] are at the same time the basic tenets of democracy" (p.10). A symbiotic interactive relationship also linked the rise of democratic national states [TAN7] with modern empires, industrialization and the emergence of a global industrial capitalist system (Riggs 1995a and b).
Inter-State Wars. The consequences of this development were predictable and they are easy to understand. Competition between the expanding modern empires, rooted in state nationalism, led to inter-state wars, starting overseas in the peripheral territories where these states sought to expand their rule, and it ended, during the 20th century, in gigantic inter-state wars at the center. World Wars I and II brought the defeat of Germany and Italy vis-a-vis France, England, America and Russia, but all of Europe suffered from war devastation. The subsequent Cold War expanded the scale of imperial competition to the American and Russian (Soviet) superpowers where ideological goals rather than simple nationalism powered their expansionist drives, energizing new contests at the periphery where neo-imperial spheres of interest replaced overt imperial conquests.
The basic design of modern empires was self-contradictory. It relied on democracy and nationalism at home to motivate the conscription of citizen soldiers, thereby expanding its military capabilities. Industrialization also provided weapons of greatly enhanced power and its secrets of production remained a monopoly of the conquerors, who were thereby enabled to destroy each other in fratricidal wars. The principles of nationalism and democracy that prevailed in the metropoles, however, were denied to their subjects in conquered territories, giving these principles all the glamour of forbidden fruits. The ultimate costs of the wars that weakened the imperial powers included their eventual collapse as nationalism and dreams of democracy spread to their dependencies.
Imperial power was, of course, also undermined economically because the rising liberation movements increased the cost of retaining conquered territories and reduced the anticipated profits that the conquerors had originally expected. The liberation movements were led by new leaders in the imperial domains who stepped forward to demand for themselves the benefits enjoyed by their conquerors: democracy, industrialization and, above all, nationalism. Within a few decades after the imperial conquests had been completed, therefore, a rising tide of resistance movements in all the empires led, finally, to the liberation of a host of newly independent states from the war-weakened imperial powers.
The collapse of modern imperialism and the end of the Cold War has also terminated the driving force behind large-scale inter-state wars in the modern world -- a reality few people have yet fully grasped. Instead of preparing for future wars between independent states [TAN7], we need to focus our energies on how to institutionalize peace within all the states of the world.
Traditional Empires. The uniqueness of modern nationalism and imperialism can be better understood when it is contrasted with the situation in all traditional empires. The main incentive for imperial domination in past centuries was based on the rival ambitions of hereditary rulers and their followers, sometimes augmented by religious zeal. The rulers of traditional empires had to rely on small armies recruited primarily from mercenaries and aristocrats, using pre-industrial weapons with limited destructive capabilities. The subjects of traditional empires were usually multi-ethnic and largely illiterate: mass communications were impossible and most communities were small-scale face-to-face groups. Nationalism in that environment was not feasible nor would imperial rulers countenance it. Without nationalism, democracy or machine-powered industry, traditional empires were ideologically coherent and stable, enabling some of them to survive for centuries.
Most writers on ethnicity and politics pay little attention to this distinction, but it is sometimes implicit in their discourse. For example, in Esman (1994) we find that conquest and colonization are distinguished from each other, the former being illustrated by the overland expansion of the Russian tsars for three centuries before World War I, and the latter by European "colonization" (pp.2-3). The Tsarist conquests created a traditional empire based mainly on imperial ambitions rather than bourgeois expansionism with nationalism and democracy the dominant themes, as they became in the West European and American cases.
I do have difficulty, however, with the use of colonization for the latter because we need to distinguish the movement of colonists to sparsely populated lands (as in North America, Australia, New Zealand) and the conquest of densely populated lands, like India or West Africa -- no doubt in some areas, like Kenya, Southern Rhodesia and South Africa, colonization was mixed with conquest. The former involved the subjugation of indigenous peoples who have only recently begun to mobilize for modern political action by contrast with the dependent peoples whose liberation from control by modern empires has already been accomplished.
Another caveat may be mentioned: after 1917 the Russian Tsars were replaced by a Communist regime that gave lip service to both democratic and nationalist norms, though in a form unacceptable to Western democracies. I believe the blood bath of nationalist conflict following the collapse of the Soviet Union reflected the spread of these revolutionary ideas among conquered peoples rather than the impact of the traditional Tsarist imperial system.
Both traditional and modern empires involved conquests, though for different reasons and with different results. In all conquests there was some colonization, but colonization by Europeans in the "New World" reached unprecedented levels. The conquest/colonization contrast enables us to distinguish clearly between conquered dependencies and colonized colonies. Traditional empires had both colonies and dependencies as have their modern counterparts: the two modes of conquest cut across the traditional/modern distinction.
What will now replace the endemic inter-state warfare of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries? Not, I think, the "end of history" (Fukuyama 1989) or the inter-civilizational clashes (Huntington 1993) that have been forecast. Nor will unmitigated anarchy emerge (Kaplan 1994). Instead, I foresee an extended period of turmoil among nations, marked by intense struggles between emergent ethnic nations and established states, many of them weak authoritarian regimes unable to control their own domains effectively. Working through a melange of inter-state organizations (including the UN, NATO, SSCE, OAS, OAU, ASEAN, etc.) and the unilateral activities of individual states, largely ineffective efforts will be made to rescue embattled regimes and suppress ethnonational rebellions. Those that succeed will not be recognized as states -- Somaliland, Taiwan -- and those annexed by another state -- Timor -- may officially retain their sovereign status. The outcome will be a growing number of para-states, hybrids between states and ethnonations. But all are nations, as this term is used here, and all will be the victims of continuing turmoil.
Self-Determination. Increasing numbers of ethnic nations will rebel against the states that block their aspirations, often relying on violent means to realize goals rationalized by the principle of national self-determination. One contributing factor will be the ready availability of leaders socialized to demand nationalism, democracy and economic growth for their own people. Others include new techniques for organization and global communication via the mass media and INTERNET, plus the ready availability of weapons of mass destruction.
Perhaps most importantly, the incentives for violence are fiercest in countries dominated by weak authoritarianism where widespread anarchy [TAN1] also prevails. Under strong authoritarianism, ethnic nationalism [TAN5B] can be violently suppressed, but where constitutional democracy prevails, there is a high probability (though no certainty) that rising demands for self-determination can be handled non-violently. The leaders of the conquered peoples demanding independence usually accepted the principles of nationalism and the independence (liberation) movements they organized were designed to create new democratic nation-states. After independence had been achieved, however, nationalism for dominant minorities soon provoked rival nationalisms among marginalized communities, some of whom constituted demographic majorities.
Especially acute problems attracting global concern have arisen in divided ethnonations partitioned by imperial conquest or boundary changes [TAN8]. The Serbs in Bosnia today provide a leading example since Serbs living across the border from Serbia are responsive to the notion that all Serbs should live in a single national state [TAN7], a movement that has caused global concern and intervention. If Somalia were to achieve viable statehood, its leaders would undoubtedly return to the irredentist claims made against Ethiopia during the conflict that raged from 1963 to 1978, generating active intervention by the U.S. and the U.S.S.R.
A special complication attributable to imperial policy in many countries arose from the large-scale importation of alien workers and an increase in the number of diaspora traders. These migrations were designed to meet the requirements of the industrializing metropoles both for unskilled labor and for shop keepers willing to open shops in villages where subsistence peasants might be induced to become customers and cash crop farmers. Without such small-scale marketization, much of the potential for developing mass markets and sources of raw materials could not be realized.
The result was what Furnival (1948) called plural societies -- a special kind of multi-ethnic society where ethnicity and economic roles were separated and well policed under the supervision of alien rulers. After independence, however, these alien traders and workers, although they often performed indispensable economic roles, were politically marginalized and often became scapegoats for the new rulers. Evicting and persecuting them -- illustrated by the extreme case of the expulsion of Uganda's Indian minority during the military rule of Idi Amin in the 1970s -- has been both politically and economically disruptive and it has accentuated the difficulties of life in multi-ethnic societies.
Turmoil Among Nations. Although inter-state conflicts and tension between ethnic nations will surely continue in the years ahead, the most deadly forms of conflict will involve the competing interests of states [TAN2] and the ethnic nations [TAN3] that exist within and across their borders, especially in weak states where authoritarianism co-exists with widespread anarchy -- a condition that may be characterized as anarchian" (Riggs 1995b). The inability of dominant minorities in weak quasi-states, to use Robert Jackson's term (1990), to meet the needs of their own peoples, including public security, provokes the curse of criminal gangs and the rise of ethnonational revolts. The limited resources and capability of weak authoritarian regimes provided the space within which ethnonationalism could arise, offering many opportunities for the mobilization of harassed and anxious minorities [TAN1]. During the coming decades, I believe, inter- state wars will largely disappear, to be replaced by intra-state violence in the form of contests between states and ethnic nations. Yet our established vocabulary lacks a term to characterize this form of violence. Neither international nor inter-nationality properly identifies such conflicts. A construction like inter-nation might work. This term can include inter-state and inter-nationality problems plus conflicts between states and ethnic nations. However, since the familiar terms, "international" and "inter- nationality" could easily be confused with "inter-nation," we need another term that would be less vulnerable to misunderstanding. What should it be?
I suggest that we might use turmoil among nations to identify violent encounters that center on contests between states and ethnic nations. The broad concept would also include inter-state wars and inter-nationality struggles, although I believe such conflicts will largely disappear from the world scene. I cannot think of a better term to propose, but any reader who can imagine one is invited to offer suggestions. Admittedly, the phrase is clumsy. A more precise term might be inter-nation conflicts, but its utility will depend on the ability of users to remember that nation includes both states [TAN2] and ethnic nations [TAN3], going back to the original fuzzy sense of this word. What, we may now ask, should be done to cope with the severe challenge of turmoil among nations that now faces us?
No doubt much can be accomplished through inter-state cooperation to ameliorate or overcome conflicts between states and ethnic nations. However, I believe that efforts to prevent such outbreaks offer more hope than post-hoc responses organized after the violence has commenced. This requires effective action by the states immediately concerned. No doubt strong authoritarianism (based on single-party rule) provides the means to suppress ethnic nationalism temporarily, but in the long run, I believe, such regimes are themselves doomed to failure and after their collapse, long-expressed ethnic nationalism will lead to even more violent uprisings, especially when anarchianism prevails in the successor states.
The Democratic Potential. In the long-run, I submit, only democracies are able to respond to the concerns of minority communities in a way that permits the nonviolent resolution of potential conflicts based on aspirations for self-determination. This involves the latent capacity of any democracy to respond to the legitimate interests of its minority peoples, and also its ability to govern effectively, bringing the rule of law to turbulent societies.
However, all democracies are not the same and some, more than others, can cope successfully with the growing turmoil among nations attributable to the spread of ethnic nationalism among mobilizing minorities who have accepted Western inspired norms of national self-determination. Moreover, some of the principles honored in the older Western democracies seem to be inapplicable in societies recently liberated from the grip of modern empires. We need to rethink the traditional premises of constitutional democracy.
Among them, I would include the principles of majority rule and of individualism. To the degree that cultural homogeneity existed within the national states where contemporary democracies were established, majority rule made sense, but in most of the quasi-states of the world, minority rights seem to be more important. Individualism, as reflected in the principle of one-person one-vote, also seemed reasonable in Western contexts where cultural practices and religious norms sustained this orientation. In much of the world today, however, communitarian ideals and communal solidarities subordinate the individual and make some kind of consociationalism in governance necessary if democracy is to be workable.
At the conference on "Ethnonational Cleavages and Viable Democracy" held in Hawaii during January 1995, under the auspices of the Committee on Viable Constitutionalism (COVICO) and the research committee on the Structure and Organization of Government (SOG) of the International Political Science Association, research papers were presented on how different democratic regimes have attempted to meet the needs of their ethnonational minorities. At least some lessons about what works and what doesn't for constitutional regimes facing such problems became apparent during this conference. A book reporting the conference results is in preparation. Meanwhile, interested readers may ask the authors for their draft papers -- a list is provided as an annex to this paper.
A Call for Action. I cannot say more on this topic now: it will constitute a major frontier for future research. There is much lip-service today among governments, philanthropic agencies, and foundations in support of democratization. However, a great deal of the work done in this area seems to be a superficial response to ephemeral goals, like the expansion of the global capitalist system through increased security for foreign investments or the utopian hope that, in the aftermath of the Cold War, popular enthusiasm will produce effective support for the establishment of democratic governance.
No doubt, there has also been a remarkable increase in recent years in the number of countries where democratic values are celebrated and multi-party elections have been held, often with international observers. Such elections, however, cannot guarantee that elected legislatures will, in fact, exercise effective power or that constitutional government will really work. Nevertheless, the current world environment favors the goals of democratization and, I believe, we should take advantage of this climate to pursue a major target that offers our best hope for preventing the occurrence of a large number of bloody conflicts between states and ethnonational communities that will, I fear, make the coming century even bloodier than the one that is now ending (Rummel 1994). Only by means of constitutional democracy can turmoil among nations be reduced to non-violent political action.
For the rest of TURMOIL AMONG NATIONS see:  introduction || endnotes - 1 || endnotes - 2 || bibliography || concept records