The Dahiyeh Doctrine: The Conditions Under Which States Can Establish Asymmetric Deterrence
Frankel, Rafael D.
For the last decade, a growing body of research has sough to understand how classical deterrence methods could be adapted by states to establish asymmetric deterrence against non-state militant groups. Various strategies were suggested, but the research undertaken to date focused nearly exclusively on the actions of the defending state. This research project is the first formal effort to discover under what conditions deterrence against such groups can be established by focusing on important attributes of the non-state groups themselves. The result is the development of the Asymmetric Deterrence Matrix (ADM), which in eight temporally-bound case studies involving Hamas and Hezbollah successfully predicts the level of deterrence Israel should have been able to achieve against those groups at given periods of time.This research demonstrates that there are four main causal factors related to a non-state group's characteristics that constrain and encourage the success of asymmetric deterrence strategies by states: elements of statehood (territorial control, political authority, and responsibility for a dependent population), organizational structure, ideology, and inter-factional rivalries. A fifth variable, external support, is strongly correlated but complex. In addition to breaking new theoretical ground, the ADM also leads to highly relevant policy recommendations regarding how states can devise tailor-made asymmetric deterrence strategies that correlate to the type of non-state militant group they are defending against.
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