Security Assistance and Warfare

  • Robert E. Harkavy
  • Stephanie G. Neuman


Since the end of World War II, security assistance patterns have reflected the shape and character of power relations among nations and states.As these have changed, so too has security assistance, particularly to combatants. Between 1969 and 1989, during the Cold War, the U.S. and Soviet Union together accounted for approximately two-thirds of global arms transfers, a robust indicator of their political and military dominance in the international system.1 In comparison, their closest competitors, France and Great Britain, averaged between 4 and 6 percent of the total arms market. But by the 1990s—with the collapse of the Soviet Union and communist regimes in Eastern Europe, the changing regional balances, the rampant instability in Africa and parts of the former communist world—the structure of the arms market and the international system reflected a radical transformation of power relations taking place among states. The U.S. alone was now dominant in a contracted arms market, its closest competitors sharing a relatively smaller share of the arms trade.


African National Congress Khmer Rouge Military Assistance Security Assistance Revolutionary United Front 
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© Robert E. Harkavy and Stephanie G. Neuman 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • Robert E. Harkavy
  • Stephanie G. Neuman

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