What kinds of international conflicts make states more likely to increase repression? I argue that the issues at stake in conflict may have different levels of domestic salience and may alter the domestic political status quo, thus increasing or decreasing a state’s or regime’s propensity to repress. I argue and find that democracies are most likely to increase repression when they are territorial revisionists, specifically increasing the use of imprisonment and torture. Autocratic states are more likely to increase repression during foreign policy-oriented disputes, as opposed to those fought over territory, which are less likely to escalate to full-scale war, and more likely to be domestically motivated. This project thus opens up the black box of international conflict to better understand how the reasons states fight abroad affects decisions to repress at home.
- human rights
- international conflict
- militarized interstate dispute
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Sociology and Political Science
- Political Science and International Relations