'The monopoly of the legitimate use of force' (Max Weber), embodied in the police and the military, is one of the classic characteristics of the state. For many it is in fact the very definition of modern statehood. While the trend to transfer competences to the international sphere can be observed in many other policy areas, in the OECD-world the decision to employ force still seems to belong exclusively to nation states.
This is not, however, the whole picture. Since the golden age of the Democratic Constitutional and Interventionist State (DCIS) the nature of the conflicts in which the police and the military have been employed have changed in scope and type. One can also observe a trans- and internationalization of the problem situations themselves. As a result, one can assume that not only in the sphere of welfare but also in the domains of security and rule a network of international institutions has developed that have both inter- and supranational elements. It is likely that the extent to which this has occurred depends on the kind of problem and the institutional arrangements involved. The actual use of force, therefore, may have become dependent on external – as opposed to internal, i.e. domestic – norms and rules, and a de facto interdependence may have developed. If this is the case, it means that states are actively submitting their unrestrained disposal over the use of force to external influences and processes of legitimation. This would amount to an internationalization of the state in the dimension of resources.
Comparing the 1970s with the 1990s, the following areas will be investigated: war between states, civil war, transnational terrorism and transnational crime. First of all we will examine exactly where and in what form nation states have been prepared to leave tasks over to international institutions for supervision or for actual steering and handling. What are state preferences concerning the internationalization of the monopoly of the legitimate use of force? In how far is the nation state’s autonomy de jure and/or de facto limited as a result? Second, for each of the different policy areas involved we will establish the causes for this change – or failure to change. Third, we explore whether national identities or structures are transformed in this process and whether these transformations are temporary or permanent.
Final report in German
Project application 2003-2006 in German