Sunday, January 18, 2009

El Salvador postwar transition, as seen by former FMLN guerrillas

Preliminary Project Description
The transition process that ended El Salvador’s 12 year civil war (1980-1992) was initially much praised as a “model” transition by the international community. However, growing endemic violence and strong political polarization have tempered enthusiasm, inside as well as outside the country. Therefore, this research project examines and analyses El Salvador’s fragile post war transition from a long term perspective. It focuses on the transformation of one of the key actors, the former left-wing rebels of the FMLN, in the time span of 16 years that have past since the Peace Accords (1992-2008). The research project documents and analyzes processes of political, social and economic reintegration of (former) revolutionary militants, emphasizing the actors own perspectives and interpretations. In doing so, the project reassesses earlier evaluations of El Salvador’s transition process at the light the increasingly violent and polarized context of recent years, highlighting the a long term impact of key transition components such as disarmament, demobilization and reintegration (DDR) and transitional justice. The project’s critical long-term perspective on transitional politics aims to generate important new insights on the characteristics of post conflict state fragility, relevant for scholars as well as policy makers

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