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Crises as Signals of Strength: The Significance of Affect in Close Allies' Relationships

Published in Security Studies. 2011, vol. 20, no. 2, p. 238-265
Abstract Affect exists among close allies and influences their actions and reactions vis-à-vis each other. These countries' perceptions of, and affective attachment to, the specialness of their relationships explains why, in certain circumstances, big clashes occur among them. In this sense, affect explains why crises among close allies are more signals of strength than weakness: the passionate nature of such crises—as opposed to more routine or recurrent disagreements—is triggered by the high value placed by close allies on their ties and not, as often stated in the literature, by the erosion of these ties. After developing this argument, I illustrate it with the analysis of two crises among close allies: the Suez crisis between Britain and the United States in late 1956, and the Iraq crisis between France and the United States in early 2003. I then contrast these episodes with a crisis between two allies with a much less affectively charged relationship—the United States and Turkey, also in early 2003 over the Iraq War issue.
Keywords AffectClose alliesCrisesAtlantic allianceNATO
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EZNACK GUZIEJKO, Lucile Annie. Crises as Signals of Strength: The Significance of Affect in Close Allies' Relationships. In: Security Studies, 2011, vol. 20, n° 2, p. 238-265. doi: 10.1080/09636412.2011.572687 https://archive-ouverte.unige.ch/unige:17299

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Deposited on : 2011-11-01

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