Arctic Yearbook 2014 - Page 438

438 Arctic Yearbook 2014 term ‘conflict prevention’ or the synonymously used terms of ‘preventive diplomacy’ and ‘crisis prevention’ actually imply (e.g. Wallensteen & Möller 2003; Lund 2007: 288). Also the scientific debate still lacks a clear and consistent theory of conflict prevention which mainly origins in disagreements on the time frame in which conflict prevention actually takes place and which instruments the concept should include (e.g. Wallensteen & Möller 2003; Lund 2007: 288). A concise overview over the different stages of peace and conflict is for example provided by Michael Lund: Figure 3: Basic life-history of conflicts and the phases of engagement (Lund, 2007: 290). The consequence is a large variety of different definitions (Wallensteen & Möller 2003: 4 f.) which is why Wallensteen and Möller propose to differentiate between ‘direct’ and ‘structural’ preventive actions (2003: 6). Whilst ‘direct preventive actions’ use a rather reactive strategy in which a crisis is already at the stage of a possible military escalation, ‘structural preventive actions’ focus on creating “such conditions that conflicts and disputes hardly arise or do not threaten to escalate into militarized action” (ibid.). This understanding of structural preventive actions shall also serve as the foundation of the main argument for the implementation of CSBMs in the Arctic region. This article will therefore further follow the definition of Carment and Schnabel who see preventive actions as “a medium and long-term proactive strategy intended to identify and create the enabling conditions for a stable and more predictable international security environment” (2003: 11). In order to narrow down this still rather broad definition, this article further follows the proposal of Wallensteen and Möller by arguing that the ‘dependent variable should rather be treated as a reduced likelihood of armed conflict than its actual full prevention (2003: 11). The ‘independent variable’ instead needs to focus on: “... an evaluation of how the typical factors that explain the onset of war can be offset by the preventive actions that the prevention literature discusses” (ibid.: 17). Thus any reduction of potential causes of armed conflict should also automatically lead to a reduction of the Confidence- & Security-Building Measures in the Arctic