n African Security Review - Is there a missing link? Coups and coup attempts in Africa : essay

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Coups and coup attempts are a phenomenon that has ravaged the African continent from the time of independence to the present. Despite the common belief that increased democratic practices should lead to fewer incidents of coups or coup attempts, this appears not to be the case. Despite the political determination not to reward military governments or those that have arisen from extra-constitutional arrangements, through welcoming them into the community of states, the scourge continues. This article seeks to identify other possible explanations for the prevalence of this phenomenon. The suggested models include greed and a crisis of expectations; naivety, ignorance and gullibility; and foreign intervention. The paper also provides a review of the prevalence of coups on the continent and a brief coverage of conceptual factors, which provides some understanding of civil-military relations as well as an indication of what the future holds.


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