1st Edition

From Soldiers to Citizens Demilitarization of Conflict and Society

By João Gomes Porto, Chris Alden Copyright 2008

    Demilitarization of conflict and society is crucial to building sustainable peace in countries emerging from the scourge of civil war. As longstanding conflicts come to an end, processes which facilitate the potentially volatile transition from formal peace to social peace are critically important. At the heart of the exercise is the necessity of transforming the culture and the instruments of war - demilitarization - including disarming, demobilizing and reintegrating (DDR) former combatants into society. This volume represents the first in-depth and comprehensive discussion of reintegration of former combatants in war to peace transitions. In addition to a systematic reflection and review of existing literature on DDR, the authors devised and applied a field research methodology to studying the reintegration of former combatants in Angola with potentially significant implications on the design and implementation of DDR programmes. The volume is written for academics, students and practitioners focusing on war to peace transitions and post-conflict issues.

    Introduction; Chapter 1 Demilitarization, DDR and War to Peace Transitions; Chapter 2 Demilitarization in the Angolan Context; Chapter 3 Epicenters of Emergency, State Weakness and Decay; Chapter 4 UNITA’s Demobilized Soldiers; Chapter 5 Reintegration; Chapter 6 From Soldiers to Citizens;


    Dr João Gomes Porto is a Lecturer at the Department of Peace Studies, University of Bradford, UK. Dr Chris Alden is a Senior Lecturer at the London School of Economics and Political Science, UK. Dr Imogen Parsons holds a PhD in International Relations from the London School of Economics and Political Science, UK.

    '...delivers a lot of conceptual "punch" through a detailed assessment of Angola’s Disarmament, Demobilization and Reintegration (DDR) programme. Using innovative quantitative and qualitative analysis the authors provide a fine-grained review of Angola’s experiences. The authors advance our knowledge by focusing on the state of the country and the implications that has for a successful DDR programme.' Joanna Spear, George Washington University, USA 'This book provides an in-depth analysis of the Disarmament, Demobilisation and Reintegration (DDR) process and delves into an even deeper conversation about the concept and practice of Reintegration... brings a wealth of information to the field of peace and conflict studies. The empirical research base on which the arguments about DDR practice depend gives the reader an opportunity to better understand the practice and the critical challenges of implementing the DDR programmes in weak post-conflict states. The presentation of the empirical research in qualitative discussions and quantitative representations enable the reader to question some of the assumptions frequently made about reintegration... the authors have successfully communicated the importance of a properly effected DDR in securing a post-conflict state. The use of Angola as a case study makes it easier for the reader to understand the theoretical assertions and arguments of the authors. The discussions that marry the theory and practice of reintegration gives this text some objective basis from which practitioners and academics can draw a wealth of understanding of post-conflict peace-building practices. This book provides a detailed analysis of the practice, challenges and opportunity of the DDR process in transforming ex-soldiers into citizens.' African Journal on Conflict Resolution