• Christi Siver


Fulfilling international treaty obligations in the midst of conflict, such those demanded in the Geneva Conventions, are difficult under the best of circumstances. Although states agreed, after the horrors of World War II, to formally commit themselves to reduce some of the most extreme brutality in war, those commitments can seem less important in the heat of battle. Organizational theory provides an especially fruitful theoretical lens through which to understand why some military units commit war crimes but others do not. Based on the author’s findings regarding the ability of socialization and subculture to explain unit commission of war crimes in the case studies of Korea, Malaya, and Somalia, some initial policy suggestions that could increase compliance with the laws of war are discussed. Challenges remain, and in that light, the chapter concludes with a discussion of the limitations of this project and outlines additional research needed and questions that remain.


Organizational theory Socialization Subculture Compliance International law 

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Christi Siver
    • 1
  1. 1.Political Science DepartmentCollege of Saint BenedictCollegevilleUSA

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