Society Under Siege: Crime, Violence and Illegal Weapons


edited by Virginia Gamba with the assistance of Sarah Meek and Jakkie Potgieter. Printed by the Institute for Security Studies


Edited by Virginia Gamba, this book presents a global view of the issues which impact on the proliferation of illicit weapons around the world, and those specific issues which have compounded the spread of illegal weapons in Southern Africa. Various contributors address two of the most important considerations which must be analysed before any discussion of potential control mechanisms for light weapons is possible. First there are the issues of understanding the present-day environment in which light weapons proliferation has taken place, and how these weapons fit into that context. Secondly, light weapons proliferation is itself focused on, with particular emphasis on the dynamics of the use of light weapons. By examining the trends relating to new security threats to international peace and stability, decision makers and analysts can locate dangers of light weapons proliferation in their exact context. Williams develops the theme of new threats to security as a reflection on the changing nature of political relationships at both the national and international level.

182 Pages

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY


Naylor explores the dynamics of the free market, and within that the black market as a major factor in global insecurity, in addition to others, including transitions, structural breakdowns and the rise of ethnic and religious identities.

Mathiak takes on the challenge of looking at the dynamics of the light weapons trade itself at the end of the twentieth century. Here it is argued that although the end of the Cold War may have brought a general reduction in the international trade for major conventional weapons, it does not seem to be the case for light weapons. Governments continue to supply light weapons, for much the same reasons that they did during the Cold War. The quest for international security and for controlling unstable regional transitions is still part of governmental decisions concerning the supply of light weapons in general, and small arms in particular.

To exemplify the context, economics and dynamics of light weapons proliferation, Batchelor and Potgieter link the growing demand for small arms with current internal conflict, and with the increased availability of second-hand stockpiles as a result of ineffectual disarmament during peacekeeping operations , respectively.

The last chapter also helps set the scene for the additional volumes of this publications series. Volume 2 (forthcoming mid-1998), the potential for regional organisations to develop arms control mechanisms will be explored, while Volume 3 will look specifically at the challenges South Africa is facing in managing illicit and licit arms.
  • TRANSNATIONAL ORGANISED CRIME AND INTERNATIONAL SECURITY: A GLOBAL ASSESSMENT, Phil Williams

  • THE RISE OF THE MODERN ARMS BLACK MARKET AND THE FALL OF SUPPLY-SIDE CONTROL, R T Naylo

  • THE LIGHT WEAPONS TRADE AT THE END OF THE CENTURY, Lucy Mathiak

  • INTRA-STATE CONFLICT, POLITICAL VIOLENCE AND SMALL ARMS PROLIFERATION IN AFRICA, Peter Batchelor

  • THE PRICE OF WAR AND PEACE: A CRITICAL ASSSESSMENT OF THE DISARMAMENT COMPONENET OF UNITED NATIONS OPERATIONS IN SOUTHERN AFRICA, Jakkie Potgieter.

Contents - PDF Files

Abbreviations

Notes on contributors

Preface

Introduction

SECTION 1

P Williams - Transnational Organised Crime and International
Security: A Global Assessment


R T Naylor - The Rise of the Modern Arms Black Market and the Fall of Supply-Side Control

SECTION 2

L Mathiak - The Light Weapons Trade at the End of the Century

P Batchelor - Intra-State Conflict, Political Violence and Small Arms Proliferation in Africa

J Potgieter - The Price of War and Peace: A Critical Assessment of the Disarmament Component of United Nations Operations in Southern Africa

Conclusions