In the course of 1990, the Republic of Liberia virtually ceased to exist as a recognisable state. Beset by economic disaster and appallingly bad government, the state eventually collapsed in the face of a rebellion which, while overthrowing the regime of President (and former Sergeant) Samuel Doe, was unable to put any viable alternative in its place. Many thousands of Liberians died in the course of what became an indiscriminate slaughter, and probably over half of the survivors were reduced to the status of refugees, either within their own country or in neighbouring states. The intervention of a West African peacekeeping force helped to create some semblance of order in the shattered capital, Monrovia, while itself becoming an element in the wider problems of political and diplomatic reconstruction (see Chapter 12).


Foreign Policy Foreign Minister World Development Report Open Door Policy Liberian Economy 
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  1. 1.
    The World Bank, World Development Report, 1991 (New York: Oxford University Press, 1991), table 1; a considerable number of Liberians died and many more fled abroad as a result of the civil war of 1989–91.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 3.
    see Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, ‘The Liberian Economy on April 12, 1980: Some Reflections’, Liberian Studies Journal, 14, 2 (1989): 1–22.Google Scholar
  3. 4.
    See R.I. Onwuka, ‘Transnational Corporations and Regional Integration’, in R.I. Onwuka and A. Sesay (eds), The Future of Regionalism in Africa ( London: Macmillan, 1985 ): 156.Google Scholar
  4. 6.
    See J.G. Liebenow, Liberia: The Quest for Democracy ( Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1987 ): 140–1.Google Scholar
  5. 7.
    United Nations, Yearbook of International Trade Statistics 1985 ( New York: United Nations, 1987 ).Google Scholar
  6. 10.
    See T. Golan, ‘A Certain Mystery—How can France do everything that it does in Africa—and get away with it?’, African Affairs, 80, 318 (1981): 3–12.Google Scholar
  7. 11.
    For an account of the ‘opex’ project by its leader, see F.B. Kimble, ‘The United States — Liberia Operational Experts Project’, Liberian Studies Journal 15,1 (1990): 1–12.Google Scholar
  8. 16.
    See Amos Sawyer, Effective Immediately: Dictatorship in Liberia, 1980–1986: A Personal Perspective Liberia Working Group Papers No. 5 (Bremen, 1987).Google Scholar

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© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • Christopher Clapham

There are no affiliations available

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