Policy Briefs Books Journals

Cooperative Security, Arms Control and Disarmament Policy Brief  No.170 - August, 2023 • By Herbert Wulf

Policy Brief No.170: “Rent-a-Soldier”: War as Business

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Wars are not only fought by armed forces. Often, different non-state actors are involved. Private or non-state actors were at times more important than state-established armed forces. Armed conflicts became an attractive and profitable business for some of the participants in wars, who offered themselves for political goals for their economic profit. After the end of the Cold War, economic and personnel shortages in the military sector accelerated privatization, and several factors have contributed to a gold rush for private military companies in the 2000s. They operate in a legal grey area and undermine the state's monopoly on the legitimate use of force. Thus, there is a need to regulate them.

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