International Interim Governments, Democratization, and Post-Conflict Peace Building: Lessons from Cambodia and East Timor, A Croissant

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Content: International Interim Governments, Democratization and Post-Conflict Peace-building: Lessons from Cambodia and East Timor
­ First draft ­
Aurel Croissant
Three years ago the British diplomat Robert Cooper created a huge controversy when he argued that "lib-
eral imperialism" is a legitimate response to the chaos and disorder of civil strife and disrupted states (Coo-
per 2002). But yesterday's heresy has become today's conventional wisdom. In his new book "Empire Lite",
Michael Ignatieff (2003), declares: "Temporary imperialism Empire Lite has become the necessary
condition for democracy in countries torn apart by civil war". Is he right? Is externally directed and monitored
democratization an appropriate strategy for successful peace-building in post-conflict environments? Are
liberal protectorates, transitional regimes or international interim regimes stable institutional bridges be-
tween regimes that can carry a society from conflict to sustainable peace?
This paper seeks to discuss this subject with reference to Cambodia and East Timor, two prime examples
for UN-led "international interim governments" that have played key roles in post-conflict peace-building. In
discussing the question: `to what extent have the international interim governments contributed to democra-
tization and post-conflict peace-building in Cambodia and East Timor',1 this study also considers the follow-
ing four specific questions, raised by the organizers of this workshop:
1. What was the nature of the international interim governments in Cambodia and East Timor?
2. How did the fact that both international interim governments were UN-led affect the legitimacy, working
and stability of the interim government?
3. How did the transitional authority provide the necessary stability and how did it conduct its mission?
4. What did both governments achieve and how sustainable were their outcomes?
Doing so, the paper proceeds in sixth steps: First, I will discuss the relationship between democratization
through international interim governments and peace-building. The main argument developed here is that
democratic transition directed and monitored through international interim governments must be seen as
1 This essay defines democratization as the process of transition from a non-democratic to a democratic political regime. Democ-
racy is defined as liberal democracy.
one element within the multidimensional challenge of peace-building. The success or failure of this endeavor critically depends on whether democratization is embedded in a broader strategy of post-conflict peace-building that promotes human security through legal, political and economic methods. Second, I will discuss the specific obstacles for democratization through international interim governments in countries and territories characterized by civil strife and disrupted stateness.2 The main argument developed here is that those countries which are the most likely candidates for international interim governments are the most unlikely candidates for sustainable democracy. Thirdly the background conditions, facilitating factors and obstructive conditions for democratization and peace-building through UN-led transitional governments in Cambodia and East Timor will be analyzed. Next, the paper describes the nature of transitional authority, its legitimacy, organization and operational methods in the examples of UN-led interim governments in Cambodia and East Timor. In the fifth section, the paper presents an evaluation of the successes and failures of both interim governments and examines the causes for both governments' achievements and shortcomings., The conclusion draws some lessons from the experiences of the two countries in coping with the challenge of democratization and peacebuilding through international interim governments. I. Democratization through International Interim Governments and Peace-building In their seminal work on interim governments and democratic transitions, Yossi Shain and Juan Linz develop the model of international interim governments which is defined by the authors as those forms of transitional authority, "in which the international community, through the aegis of the United Nations, directs and monitors the process of democratic change" (Shain and Linz 1995, 5). Obviously, this is neither the only form of interim government, nor the only mode of externally monitored democratization. Additional models of democratizing interim governments developed by Shain and Linz are provisional, power-sharing, and caretaker governments (op. cit.). Another, empirically more frequent, mode of externally directed and monitored transition from authoritarianism is democratization through war and imposition, exercised either by a domestic administration under more or less explicit control of external powers (Grenada 1983, Panama 1989, post-Taliban Afghanistan), or directly by the occupation forces as in Post-Second World War Germany and Japan 1945-1947 (cf. Stepan 1986, Pei and Kasper 2003). 2 This essay uses the terms civil strife rather than civil war and disrupted rather than failed states in order to develop amore nuanced exploration of the challenges posed by these problems (cf. Maley, Sampford and Thakur 2003).
Jarmina Ottaway and Bethany Lacina (2003) and Michael Doyle (2003) have developed the idea of international interim regimes a step further. While the differentiation between three basic approaches of UNpost conflict interventions by Ottaway and Lacina helps to clarify the gray zone between international interim regimes ("international administrations") and other approaches for UN post-conflict missions, Doyle's fourfold typology of transitional authority allows one to classify different subtypes of international interim regimes. The four types of transitional authority are differentiated from each other by the degree of legal authority and effective international capacity the interim regime enjoys. Figure 1 presents the attempt to clarify the relationship between the classification of interim regimes developed by Shain and Linz and Michael Doyle's typology of UN transitional authority. Figure 1: Interim governments and types of international interim governments Interim Governments
Provisional (Transition managed by counter-elite)
Power-sharing (Transition is managed by ancient regime and opposition)
International (Transition is managed by UN)
Caretaker (Transition is managed by elites of the ancient regime)
Supervisory Authority (UN transitional authority has full legislative/ executive & administrative authority)
Executive Authority (UN has full executive authority; legislative and executive authority is shared with domestic powers)
Source: Author's adaptation from Shain and Linz 1995; Doyle 2003, 551-553.
Administrative Authority (Domestic organs have full legislative authority, UN has reserve power and is the main adminis- trative authority)
While Shain and Linz develop one defining criterion to distinguish types of interim regime (who manages the transition to democracy), Doyle's criterion is a combination of the extent of legal authority and amount effective international capacity that transitional authority dispose.
Doyle's conceptualization does not sufficiently address the methodological issue of concept specification, therefore, it cannot provide a clear identification and definition of either the attribute `legal authority' or `effective international capacity'. However, I conclude from his classification of empirical cases, that Doyle implicitly disaggregates the first attribute (which seems to be the main classificatory criterion) into three components: legislative, executive and administrative authority. The figure shows that three of Doyle's types of transitional authority are subtypes of international interim government. While the work of Shain and Linz focuses on the role that interim governments play in enhancing or impeding the democratic outcome in the transition from authoritarianism, Doyle and Ottaway and Lacina are more interested in the role that the United Nations in general and UN transitional authorities in particular play in post-conflict peace-building in general. Post conflict reconstruction or peace-building is a complex, multidimensional challenge that reaches far beyond directing and monitoring the process of democratic change. However, there is a close relationship between democratization through international interim governments and peace-building. Post-conflict peace-building, as understood in this paper, describes all operations conducted by an interim government organized either through an International Organization like the United Nations (as in the case of Cambodia and East Timor) or the government of another sovereign state "to foster economic and social cooperation" among the political elites of a specific territory "with the purpose of building confidence among previously warring parties; developing the social, political, and economic infrastructure to prevent future violence; and laying the foundations for a durable peace" (Doyle 2003, 530). It involves "the implementation of complex, multidimensional peace agreements" which include, in addition to more traditional tasks of peacekeeping such as monitoring cantonment and demobilization, resettling refugees, and supervising transitional civilian authorities, "monitoring and organizing the implementation of human rights, national democratic elections, and economic rehabilitation" (op. cit., 532-3). There are at least three methods of peace-building. Legal methods emphasize issues of transitional justice. The emphasis of political methods is on democratic institution building to promote liberal democracy; whereas, economic measures emphasize socioeconomic development (Peou 2005a, 108). Therefore, democratization through international interim government in post-conflict societies can best be understood as one dimension of the multidimensional project of peace-building (see also Austin 2003, 180). Long-term success in relation to democratization critically depends on how much transitional authorities achieve regarding the economic, social and political components of peace-building. II. Democratization through International Interim Governments in Disrupted States and Countries Torn Apart by Civil Strife
Democratization through international interim government faces a number of advantages and challenges compared with other types transitional regimes or externally monitored democratizations. On the one hand, all forms of interim administrations suffer from a lack of democratic legitimacy insofar as they lack a democratic mandate. International interim regimes, however, draw legitimacy from two sources which are not available in other forms of externally monitored democratization. First, they are based on consent from domestic conflict parties and their foreign patrons who provide support for the peace agreement which precedes the establishment of international interim regimes. Second, international interim regimes are legitimated by international law, which often is not the case in other interim regimes or democratic interventions. On the other hand, democratization through international interim governments occurs in a much more challenging context than other forms of democratization. Specifically, Shain and Linz have formulated five basic propositions for the applicability of the international interim government model (Shain and Linz 1995, 64-5). Most fundamentally, this model requires that state institutions remain largely intact; that is, failed states are unsuited to the model. Second, the incumbent regime has not been totally delegitimated and still exerts control over the means of violence; third, foreign patrons of domestic parties support the international interim government; fourth, domestic parties have a genuine interest in conflict accommodation; and fifth, domestic parties communicate and interact among each other. Even though I do not agree with all five propositions ­ in fact, the case of East Timor proves that the model of international interim regime is applicable also when no state institutions exists provided that the transitional authority can establish intact state institutions and enforces its own control over the (legitimate) means of violence ­ I agree with the view that democratization through international interim governments is highly demanding. For reasons of lacking space and time, this paper cannot elaborate a detailed discussion of the causes for successful or failed democratization in general.3 Rather, I would like to highlight the fact that democratization through international interim governments in disrupted states and societies torn apart by civil strife differ from other scenarios of transition from autocracy by at least four distinctive features: 1. The sovereignty of the peoples and the accountability of the government towards its citizens is the core principle of democracy. International interim governments, however, by definition lack democratic legitimacy ­ the sovereignty de facto (if not de jure) passes on from the people on to an external power. Thus, democracy is supposed to be introduced under the imposition of a tremendous deficit of democratic legitimacy. At the same time, an international interim government, particularly a UN transitional au- 3 However, the results of more than three decades of transition studies support the assumption that no single outstanding factor can be sorted out as the primary cause of successful transition to democracy but only specific combinations of factors that push, constrain, facilitate or aggravate democratization. For a detailed discussion see Shin 1994; Linz, Lipset and Diamond 1995; Linz and Stepan, 1996; Bunce 2000.
thority, must bear a double, sometimes conflictive, accountability (cf. Martin and Mayer-Rieckh 2005): It is de jure accountable to the external principal organizing, controlling and financing its mission. In the case of an UN-led interim government, the UN Secretariat and the Security Council is the principal. De facto, however, the international interim government must also be accountable to the domestic elites and the people of the territory it is ruling and for whom it has to construct a self-sustainable democratic system. 2. Transitions from authoritarianism in post-conflict societies occur under extremely obstructive political, social and economic conditions. In general, the public and social infrastructure is typically in a poor state. There are the challenges of refugees and internally displaced persons. Power resources are concentrated in the hands of military commanders and entrepreneurs of violence, and there is a dramatic need to reconstruct public order and security. Markets do not function properly, and macroeconomics are unstable. Furthermore, comparative studies show that the reconstruction of civil strife-torn economies requires an extensive amount of time. In the past, most countries rarely recovered within the first decade following a civil war (Haughton 1998). War economies are typically characterized by a high rate of inflation, low domestic savings, high transaction costs, shrinking industrial and construction sectors, and a high level of subsistence agriculture (Haughton 2001, 294). The experiences of war-torn countries show that they do not have the ability to develop sustainable growth without extensive international assistance. This, however, often leads to the emergence of an extreme type of rent-seeking economy, in which the accumulation of external rents and its transformation into local rents are the most attractive form of economic activity (Ehrke 2003, 142). This has strong negative consequences for the transparency and the accountability of the political process. This constellation of factors increases with other, more general problems of successful democratization. 3. International interim regimes must operate on unstable configurations of hostile political factions. Where civil strife has disrupted the pre-existing government, former enemies may have agreed on a ceasefire or peace, but not on who should govern the peace. Therefore an international transitional authority is needed. Even where the organization of an international interim government is based on the agreement of the warring parties, this agreement is often based on the factions' inability to change the political status quo in their respective favor. It may be more a tactical agreement than the consequence of a successful elite settlement (Shain and Linz 1995, 68). As a result, peace elections in post-conflict societies are dramatic events, and the stakes are very high, probably higher than in founding elections in other young democracies (Austin 2003, 190).
Therefore, as a rule, those countries, which are the most likely targets for liberal protectorates, are the most unlikely candidates for successful democratization. Therefore, as a rule, in post-conflict scenarios, democratization through international interim governments must be based on a fourfold sequence of collateral steps: (1) internal and external pacification, (2) rebuilding stateness; (3) economic reconstruction; (4) democratization. III. Democratization and Peace-Building in Cambodia and East Timor: Background, Facilitating Factors and Obstructive Conditions In contrast to Germany, Austria, and Japan after the Second World War or Afghanistan and Iraq in recent years, democratization from outside in Cambodia and East Timor was not "democratization through imposition" (Huntington 1991). The old authoritarian order was not toppled by an external power as a result of war; rather, the installation of the UN transitional authority in both cases was based on the consent of the warring parties, which was also a necessary pre-requisite for the organization of UN-led international interim regimes. A closer examination of the nature of conflicts preceding the interim regime, the facilitating factors that initiated the interim regimes, the major actors in that process and the obstructive factors for democratization and peace-building reveals more dissimilarities than similarities between the two cases. 1. Background In Cambodia warring parties had fought each other since 1970: first, the regime of General Lon Nol ver- sus the communist Khmer Rouge guerillas (1970-75), followed by a four year reign of Khmer Rouge terror under the leadership of Pol Pot (1975-79), during which approximately one third of the Khmer population was murdered or died as a result of the misrule of the Khmer Rouge (Dalpino 2002: 6).4 Then, after the Vietnamese invasion of Cambodia in 1979, the so-called Coalition Government of Democratic Kampuchea (CGDK), a three-party coalition of Khmer Rouge, the royalist FUNCIPEC (The National United Front for an Independent, Neutral, Peaceful and Cooperative Cambodia) and the Khmer People's National Liberation Front (former pro-Lon Nol forces) fought a guerrilla war with the new pro-Vietnamese government of the People's Republic of Kampuchea (from 1989 on: State of Cambodia, SoC). Only in the late 1980s did a chance to end the conflict appear. By the end of 1986, neither Vietnam and the State of Cambodia (with support from the Soviet Union) nor the CGDK forces (with support from Thai- 4 For a detailed account of the first civil war and the Khmer Rouge regime, see Kiernan (1998 and 2004). For Cambodia's occupation by Vietnam and the second civil war, see Peou (2000).
land, China and the United States) were in a military position to dictate terms. Faced with military stalemate, a weakened political and diplomatic position, and domestic economic problems, the Vietnamese government withdrew its troops in 1989. The State of Cambodia could now no longer hope for victory, despite its continuing numerical military dominance (Peou 2002, 502). Informal negotiations between the CGDK and the State of Cambodia led to official peace talks in Paris in 1991. At last, under the leadership and guidance of representatives of the UN Security Council's Permanent Five and supported by the governments of Australia, Indonesia, Japan and other concerned states, the war parties signed the 1991 Paris Accord which mandated the establishment of an interim government, the United Nations Transitional Authority in Cambodia (UNTAC). While Cambodia's way to interim regime led from civil war to a peace agreement, civil strife in East Timor essentially was the consequence of a decade long liberation war. East Timor was colonized by the Portuguese in the sixteenth century. In 1951 Portugal declared East Timor a Portuguese Oversees Province, and hence an integral part of Portugal. As a consequence of the 1974 "Revolution of the Carnations", Portugal's already moribund empire rapidly crumbled. In June 1975, the Portuguese convened the so-called Macao summit, a conference on Timorese decolonization, to which leaders of various oppositions movements from East Timor were invited. However, representatives of the East Timor's largest political party, the Frente Revolucionara de Timor Leste Independente or Fretilin, boycotted the conference. In the following months, conflicts between pro-Independence Fretilin, the pro-Indonesian integrationalist Apodeti and the anti-Fretilin Timorese Democratic Union (UTD) escalated into open civil war. By the end of the first week of September 1975, Fretilin had secured military control of virtually all of East Timor (Hoadley 1976). On 28 November 1975, the leaders of Fretilin proclaimed the Democratic Republic of East Timor. Subsequently, anti-Fretilin and pro-integrationalist forces joined and pleaded the government of Indonesia to intervene. On December 7, 1975, Indonesian paratroopers and marines landed and secured military control of the capital city of Dili (op. cit.). Jakarta's full-scale invasion of East Timor aborted de-colonization in East Timor. In May the following year, a "popular assembly" controlled by the Indonesian government pleaded Indonesia to integrate East Timor. In July 1976, President Suharto proceeded to declare East Timor the country's twenty-seventh province (Samuel 2003, 201). Immediately after the invasion, Fretilin's armed wing, the Falantil (Forcas Armada de Liberacao Nacional de Timor l'Este) initiated guerrilla warfare against the occupation troops. The United Nations and most of its Member States officially rejected Indonesia's claim to East Timor. Since 1975, the UN maintained a strict policy of non-recognition of Indonesia's invasion and subsequent annexation of East Timor (Wheeler and Dunne 2001, 810). As a result, the question of East Timor's inde-
pendence remained on the international agenda, at least in principle. The window of opportunity for the decolonization of East Timor which was closed by Indonesia was once again opened, after the transition to democracy began in Indonesia in 1998. Partially because of the weakened ability of the Indonesian government to control the situation on the island and partially because of the increasingly diffuse situation in Indonesian politics, the situation in Timor became progressively more volatile. A shift in U.S. policy towards Indonesia and growing support in Australia for the self-determination for the Timorese may have also contributed to Indonesia's Interim President Habibie's decision on January 27, 1999, to propose limited autonomy for East Timor. In subsequent negotiations, Indonesia, Portugal and the UN concluded a set of three agreements on May 5, 1999 in New York. The agreements included a ceasefire between Fretilin and the Indonesian military and the conduct of a consultation vote that would enable the East Timorese to choose between a permanent autonomous status within Indonesia and a transition to independence under the aegis of the United Nations (Martin 2001). The UN established a Support Group for East Timor of over 30 member states, many of them Asian, after the May 5-agreement. As a self-styled `core group' of five of the most closely engaged countries (Australia, Japan, New Zealand, the UK and the United States) began to coordinate their support of the UN role (Martin and Mayer-Rieckh 2005, 127). On June 11, 1999, the Security Council established United Nations Mission in East Timor (UNAMET). UNAMET, which had already started to deploy a preparatory contingent in late May 1999, went into Timor without the protection of armed UN peacekeeping troops. UNAMET accomplished its electoral task in less than four month from the agreement with little over 1,000 staff. Asian Countries (Bangladesh, Japan, Malaysia, Nepal, Pakistan, the Philippines, South Korea and Thailand) were well represented in the mission, as well as Australia and New Zealand (op. cit., 130). The referendum that took place on August 30, 1999 had a voter turn-out of 98 percent with 79.5 per cent voting in favor of independence. Subsequently, pro-Indonesian militias with the support or under direct command of the Indonesian army started "Operation Clean Sweep", a three-week destruction campaign. In the wake of this wave of violence, there was massive ravaging on the part of the militias and the departing Indonesian military. About 70 per cent of East Timor's building stock was destroyed or damaged in September-October 1999, and the public and social infrastructure was almost completely destroyed. More than two thirds of the population was displaced, and approximately 1,500 people were murdered (Nevins 2002). The orgy of violence created a storm of protest in the international community. Within a matter of days, the deepening humanitarian catastrophe galvanized the United Nations and the major western governments into action. On September 12, President Habibie announced Indonesia's acceptance of a peacekeeping force. Three days later, the Security Council, acting under Chapter VII of the UN Charter, authorized the
establishment of a multinational force empowered to use all necessary measures to restore peace and security (INTERFET). Under a unified command, INTERFET began arriving in East Timor on September 20. The "coalition of the willing" was led by Australia, who sent the largest contingent of peacekeepers (4,500). New Zealand, Malaysia, the Philippines, South Korea, Singapore and Fiji also confirmed major contingents, while Thailand was the biggest Asian contributor (Samuel 2003). The Indonesian parliament eventually recognized the result of the consultation in mid-October. A week later, the Security Council, by resolution 12722, acting under chapter VII of the charter of the UN, established the United Nations Transitional Administration in East Timor (UNTAET), and East Timor's international interim government was born. 2. Sources, Actors and Challenges of Transition to Interim Government Among the manifold differences between Cambodia and East Timor, the nature of the conflict that pre- ceded the interim regimes is probably the most fundamental. In Cambodia, the UN transitional authority faced the task of democratization and peace-building after three decades of civil war. While in East Timor, the nearly 25 year conflict was between an indigenous liberation movement and the occupation forces, not a civil war. In contrast to East Timor, in Cambodia the state was weak but state institutions remained largely intact. The incumbent regime still exerted some control over the means of violence, and the interim regime was initiated by the incumbent regime. In East Timor, there was no state or regime, as both vanished in flames and ashes after Indonesia had drawn back its troops. In both countries, relevant changes in international and domestic politics preceded the installation of interim regimes. These changes in the "enabling environment" altered the costs and benefits of continuing the conflict for all concerned conflict parties. These parties initiated the transition and, at the same time, enabled the interim regimes. After the end of the Cold War, external support for all warring parties in Cambodia rapidly declined. Due to the rapprochement between the United States, China and the ASEAN states on the one hand and Vietnam and the Soviet Union on the other, Cambodia lost most of its relevance in geopolitics. So, the political and economic costs of the conflict increasingly exceeded the potential gains from the pacification and stabilization of Cambodia, not only from the perspective of those countries which supported the CGDK, but also for Vietnam. Assistance for the State of Cambodia became a growing black hole without any substantial benefits for the Vietnamese government. Rather, pressuring the Cambodian government to accept a peace agreement without handing over the political power unilaterally to its enemies could considerably improve Hanoi's relations with Washington (Kiernan 2002). Thus, all foreign governments participating in the conflict had a deepening interest to stop the civil-war. This, in turn, affected the situation in Cambodia. Moreover the military campaigns in the late 1980s had proven that neither the gov-
ernment nor the CGDK-troops had any realistic chance to win the war without massive support from their respective foreign allies. The military stalemate and the changes in international relations set incentives for all conflicting parties inside and outside of Cambodia to search a peaceful solution of the ongoing conflict (Sorpong 2000). In East Timor, domestic and international factors also reinforced each other. Due to the results of the consultation vote in August, the East Timorese desire for independence had an unambiguous popular mandate whereas Indonesian claims were fully discredited. The pro-Indonesian militias in East Timor were totally dependent on support from Indonesia and could not block any peace solution. It remains an open question, why TNI, the Indonesian military, allowed the ballot to proceed at all and why the United Nations and concerned Western governments failed to arrange for possible post-ballot violence before the referendum took place. Samuel argues that TNI, on the basis of favorable projections by pro-autonomy East Timorese, overestimated the strength of pro-Indonesian groups and did not expect the international community, particularly Australia and the United States, to react with military and financial sanctions and the deployment of a multinational force (Samuel 2003, 205). On the other hand, the international community underestimated the extent to which integrationalist forces in Indonesia and East Timor were prepared to go (ibid., 199). Once the violence began, however, the resolve "that East Timor would not be the next Rwanda or Srebrenica" strengthened inside the UN Security Council (Wheeler and Dunne 2001, 816). Therefore, international community was able to mobilize pressure on the Indonesian government either to stop the violence or, if unable to do so, to accept an international intervention force. The pressure took effectively four forms: 1. a coercive leverage of withdrawing IMF and World Bank loans and the suspension of arms sales by the US and the United Kingdom; 2. moral censure of Indonesia that threatened to cast Indonesia in the role of an international pariah (op. cit.: 818); 3. the Australian government made a strong case that it was willing to give up its decade-long pro- Indonesian policy if the violence should continue;5 4. the assurance that although Australia would provide leadership, infrastructure and the largest troop contingents for an international intervention, ASEAN members would also be involved in the operation, which in addition facilitated Indonesia's consent to some form of humanitarian intervention (CaballeroAnthony 2003). 5 For a detailed analysis of the interests and motivations of the Australian government in the East Timor crisis, see Wheeler and Dunne (2001).
Domestic political reasons probably also played a role. As Gorjao (2002) argues, Interim President B.J. Habibie hoped to improve his government's position vis-а-vis the international community, whose goodwill the government desperately needed to manage the financial crisis of the late 1990s. At the same time, President Habibie tried to strengthen his image as a political reformer, which, if successful, would have improved his chances in the up-coming presidential elections. Refusing to cooperate with INTERFET and the UN would have undone any possible domestic political gains and would have weakened the government's bargaining power. The Indonesian military also could accept a solution involving East Timorese independence, since the destructions of September 1999 had already worked as a warning to separatist movements in other parts of the country, for example in Aceh and West-Papua (O'Rourke 2002: 211-212). In both countries, international and domestic actors were major players in the transition to interim government. The United Nations and some Western countries had key roles in that development and played a direct role in the negotiations which eventually led to the installation of interim governments under aegis of the UN. In Cambodia, while the United Nations provided the framework for peace negations between the warring parties and nations played an important role as external patrons who exercised pressure on and offered incentives for their domestic clients to consent to a peace agreement, the main actors still were the four hostile factions. In East Timor, however, the East Timorese actors de facto played only a minor role. Of course, the indigenous resistance movement's prolonged struggle for independence kept the issue of East Timor's national sovereignty on the international agenda. The East Timorese exile government's diplomacy and the activities of the Timorese Diaspora in Europe (especially Portugal) and Africa ("Mozambique faction") also played a role. The major actors in the drama of 1999, however, were the UN Security Council and the governments in Jakarta, Canberra, Washington and Lisbon. Although ASEAN was passive and slow to react to the crisis, some SouthEast Asian nations also played a role which facilitated Indonesia's consent to some form of humanitarian intervention. The challenges for transitional authority with reference to democratization were enormous in the two countries. Both societies had neither democratic experiences nor traditions of constitutionalism and Civil Society which the UN administrations could have benefited from, in their democratization efforts. The UN was instead confronted with a culture of violence and intolerance, developed in previous decades. Particularly in Cambodia, the deliberate deepening of social conflicts by the autocratic rulers left traditional patterns of internal conflict resolution shattered and the sources of social capital drained. The political, social, and economic infrastructure was destroyed. Most economic and social resources needed for reconstruction were absent. Both societies suffered from the legacies of colonialism, war destruction, a genocide trauma, social anomy and from vast poverty and social development (Doyle 2001, 94-5; Martin and Mayer-Rieckh
2005). Social reconstruction required the repatriation of a large number of refugees, the reintegration of former combatants into civil society and national reconciliation in both countries. The data in Table 2 illustrates the enormous challenges the UN transitional governments faced, particularly in the social and economic dimensions of peace-building.
Table 1: Social and economic pre-conditions for democratization at the beginning of the interim
Population movements
Loss of human capital
Professional police
External security threat
Internal security threat
Real GDP per capita (PPP $)
Agriculture/labour force (%)
73.8 (1990)
Investment/GDP (%)
Internal savings/GDP (%)
Social Infrastructure
0.501 (1990)
Children mortality (per 1,000 living births) 181
Human poverty Index-1
UN Education Index
0.35 (1992)
Growth of population per annum (%)
International aid
21 (transfers from Indonesia)
Sources: Haughton 2001, 292-3.; ADB, Annual Report, various issues., ADB, Key Indicators 2003; ADB, Asian Development Outlook, various issues; UNDP, National Human Development Report East Timor 2002,, 13/09/2003; UNDAF Cambodia CCA Indicator Framework,, 13/09/2003.; UNDP, Human Development Report, various issues.; UNTAET,;; UNTAC, H bk/mission/untac.html. HU
A weak state and rule of law complicated efforts to spur economic stabilization, while state capacity building in Cambodia was retarded by the politicization and underpayment of the bureaucracy and an army that was bloated far beyond national security needs. In addition, the warring parties in Cambodia had to be disarmed, and their troops demobilized, while antidemocratic ideologies remained prevalent among the domestic actors and some of the factions were fundamentally unwilling or unable to abide by their commitment to the peace agreement. As the next section will show, this unwillingness was further aggravated by choices made during implementation.
IV. UN-led interim governments in Cambodia and East Timor In both countries, the United Nations was in control of the interim governments. However, the depth and effectiveness of the legal authority and de facto control of the transitional authority varied considerably. This was largely due to the organizational and juridical status and structure of the interim government, as well as, the domestic situation, particularly the number of domestic actors involved and there position towards the UN and the interim government's policies. In the terminology of Doyle (2003), interim government in East Timor belongs to the type of supervisory authority, i.e. the UN transitional authority exercised full legislative, executive and administrative powers. In fact, Chopra compares the UN transitional administration in East Timor with a "pre-constitutional monarch in a sovereign kingdom" (Chopra 2000, 29). Unlike in East Timor, UN transitional authority in Cambodia was restricted to administrative authority, while the Supreme National Council, the local power-sharing government of all four warring parties with Prince Sihanouk as its head, had full legislative authority. With reference to executive authority, UNTAC had only reserve powers, i.e. UNTAC and its special representative, Yasushi Akashi, were given only the authority to decide when the factions within the council were deadlocked and Prince Sihanouk, head of the Cambodian governing council, did not act. UNTAC's primary authority was to control the administration in five areas of sovereign activity ­ defense, finance, foreign affairs, information, and public security. Both post-conflict missions were deployed with the consent or, as in Cambodia, by invitation of all involved domestic parties, after the existing government and the armed opposition parties had reached a power-sharing agreement. Consent from the factions provided in the 1991 Paris Agreement (Cambodia) and the 1999 May 5 Agreement (East Timor), the international commitment of the foreign signatories of both agreements and various UN Security Council resolutions provided the interim governments with some sort of formal-rational legitimacy. However, interim governments and the domestic factions in both countries in the absence of free and fair elections lacked any democratic legitimacy. Therefore, it quickly became clear that both interim regimes had to prove a high degree of political inclusiveness, institutional efficiency and political effectiveness in order to make up for this legitimacy deficit with the specific support and Legitimitaetsglaube (Max Weber) of the elites and citizens.6 The agenda for the interim regimes in Cambodia and East Timor included elements of peace keeping and post-conflict peace-building (Heininger 1994, 7; Doyle 2001). So, both were second-generation, multi- 6 Michael Doyle's differentiation of the domestic factions in Cambodia in factions "with legitimacy but without power" and factions "with power but without legitimacy" misses the point. While it is true that in the eyes of the international community, CPP and Khmer Rouge were equally illegitimate whereas FUNCIPEC and the Khmer People's National Liberation Front appeared as the "legitimate" representatives of the people of Cambodia, this is entirely a subjective view.
dimensional operations, in which the UN played a threefold role as (1) a peace-maker who must facilitate a peace agreement; (2) a peace-keeper, who must monitor the cantonment and demobilization of the armed groups, resettle refugees and supervise the compliancy of the domestic parties; and (3) as a peace-builder who must monitor and organize the implementation of a new political, public, and economic infrastructure, with particular attention to human rights and national democratic elections. In Cambodia, the top priorities of the UN-transitional government were the enforcement of the cease-fire, the disarmament of the warring parties, the holding of elections, and the preparation of the democratic transition. Furthermore, the interim government was authorized to preserve the integrity and sovereignty of the country and to organize the repatriation of refugees and war internees. The timely completion of many of the tasks was the essential pre-condition for undertaking subsequent tasks ­ a receipt for internal tensions and problems. UNTAC exercised executive power only indirectly. The Paris Accord stipulated that "in order to ensure a neutral political environment conducive to free and fair general elections, administrative agencies, bodies and offices which could directly influence the outcome of elections will be place under direct United Nations supervision or control" (Paris Agreement, Article 6). This was further clarified in the appendix of the agreement to mean that the transitional authority was mandated to control the Cambodian state administration in the areas of national defense, finance, public security and information. The previously established bureaucratic structures, however, remained intact, and the old bureaucracy, which was riddled with cadres of the ruling Cambodian People's Party (CPP), was responsible for the execution of UNTAC's directives. At UNTAC's side stood the Supreme National Council, in which the CPP government was represented at equal strength as the three opposition groups combined. In addition, UNTAC had no mandate to develop any long-term plan for economic reconstruction.
Table 2: UN-led interim governments in Cambodia and East Timor
East Timor
Legal foundation
1991 Paris Accord
5 May 1999 Accord
Security Council resolution 745 (February Security Council resolution 1272 (October
1999) (UNTAET)
Security Council resolution 1480 (May 2003)
Peace-enforcement (INTERFET)
Established to ensure the implementation Endowed with overall responsibility for the
of the Agreements on the Comprehensive administration of East Timor and empowered
Political Settlement of the Cambodia Con- to exercise all legislative and executive au-
flict ("Paris Accord"):
thority, during the transition period:
1. To provide security and maintain law
Period Size of the civilian component Size of the military component Short-term results of democratization
1. human rights, 2. organization and conduct of free and fair general elections, 3. military arrangements, civil admini- stration, 4. maintenance of law and order, 5. repatriation and resettlement of the Cambodian refugees and displaced persons, 6. rehabilitation of essential Cambodian infrastructure during the transitional period. March 1992-September 1993 1,000 international administrative staff 1,400 election observers 3,600 civilian police force 15,900 troops from 34 nations National democratic elections Adoption of a new constitution Inauguration of an elected government
and order throughout the territory of East Timor; 2. To establish an effective administration; 3. To assist in the development of civil and social services; 4. To ensure the coordination and delivery of humanitarian assistance, rehabilitation and development assistance; 5. To support capacity-building for selfgovernment; 6. To assist in the establishment of conditions for sustainable development UNTAET: Oct.1999 - May 2002 UNMISET: May 2002 ­ June 2005 UNTAET*: 737 international administrative staff 1,300 civilian police force UNMISET**: 438 international administrative staff 400 civilian police force UNTAET: 6,300 troops from 29 nations UNMISET 3,450 troops from 27 nations National democratic elections Adoption of a new constitution Inauguration of an elected government Independence
* As at March 31, 2002; ** As of August 31, 2003. Sources:; UNTAET,; UNTAET,; UNMISET,; UNTAC,; Security Council resolution 1272 (1999),,; UNTAET, Tais Timor, various issues; UNTAET, East Timor Update, various issues.
Implementation of military and civilian operations started on March 15, 1992.7 In July, the UN cantonment, disarmament and demobilization programs began. The interim administration prepared a new election law for the upcoming general elections and began registering voters and implementing various voters Education Programs in October that year. UNTAC was able to stabilize the country's security situation, so that in May 1993, for the first time in the history of Cambodian, free and fair elections could be conducted. Based on the framework of the Paris Accord, the newly elected parliament drafted a constitution for the Kingdom of Cambodia. The constitution was officially promulgated September 1993 after the parliament had approved the new all-party grand coalition government under the equal leadership of FUNCIPEC and CPP. At the end of that month the UN interim administration ceased (for details see Peou 2005b and Gallup 2002). The interim government in East Timor developed in five phases:
7 UNTAC absorbed the predecessor mission UNAMIC, which was established in October 1991 to implement a landmines clearing program and monitoring the ceasefire.
1. UNAMET (June 1999 - October 1999). UNAMET's mandate was to conduct the consultative referendum on August 30, 1999. 2. INTERFET (September 1999 ­ February 2000). INTERFET was authorized by the UN Security Council to use all necessary measures to restore peace and security in East Timor. INTERFET was displaced by an UN-Peacekeeping Force in February 2000. 3. UNTAET (October 1999 ­ May 2002). 4. UNMISET (May 2002 ­ June 2005). East Timor became independent on 20 May 2002. On the same day, the Security Council established the United Nations Mission of Support in East Timor to provide assistance to East Timor over a period of two years until all operational responsibilities were fully devolved to the East Timor authorities. Subsequently, the Council extended UNMISET's mandate for another year to permit the new nation of Timor-Leste to attain self-sufficiency. 5. UNOTIL (since June 2005). The United Nations Office in Timor-Leste. UNOTIL is a simplified version of the previous mission with no peacekeeping component. Strictly speaking, only UNTAET was an interim regime with fully developed supervisory authority, while Phase I and II constituted necessary steps toward the interim government, and Phase IV marked a transition from international interim government to a self-governing democratic polity. The UN Security Council, in its resolution 1272 of October 25, 1999, UNTAET was endowed with the overall responsibility for the administration of the territory and empowered UNTAET to exercise full executive and legislative authority during the period of transition from Indonesian rule until full national sovereignty (Chawla 2001). So, the interim government's mandate in East Timor was more comprehensive than in Cambodia. More specifically, its mandate consisted of providing security, establishing an effective administration, assisting in the development of civil and social services, ensuring coordination and delivery of humanitarian assistance, economic rehabilitation and development; supporting capacity building for selfgovernment, and supporting sustainable development. UNTAET was structured into three components: military peace-keeping, governance and public administration and a humanitarian assistance and emergency rehabilitation component. To fulfill its responsibilities, UNTAET had a peace-keeping force (UN-PKF), an UN police force (CIVPOL) and a civilian staff with an initial strength of 1,670 international personal and 1,905 East Timorese at its command. The withdrawal of Indonesian military and administrative staff had led to a total breakdown of state administration, and since the East Timorese lacked sufficient numbers in its police force and professional staff,
UNTAET had to shoulder the full burden of reconstructing and staffing almost the entire administration. In other words, "UNTAET would have to invent a functioning state in East Timor" (Gorjao 2003: 314). From the very beginning, UNTAET suffered from "an underlying tension between the mandate to govern East Timor and a longer-term, strategic objective of preparing East Timor for democratic self-government" (King 2003, 745-6). Establishing a civil administration, a new police force, a judiciary system, a monetary system and banking sector and a fiscal and taxation system, as well as ensuring the delivery of basic health and education services, assisting in the repatriation of displaced persons, supporting the emergence of civil society, and assisting in the establishment of local administrations, supporting decentralization were the core tasks for UNTAET. It accomplished these tasks quite successfully considering it had to start from ground zero; however, the interim government lacked a consistent approach in dealing with the indigenous elites and population. The initial approach was not to integrate Timorese into the transitional structure but rather to recruit locally a separate civil service. Following deepening criticism of this approach, UNTAET reacted with the establishment of a non-elected and strictly advisory National Consultative Council, composed of UNTAET and East Timorese representatives. This ill-received initial approach in "Timorization" of the interim government subsequently was replaced by the National Council, a transitional cabinet with executive authority in which half the portfolios were entrusted to East Timorese representatives from the territory's thirteen districts, political parties and members of various social organizations (Martin and MayerRieckh 2005). Many Timorese and even some of UNTAET's own representatives criticized the transitional authority for following a mostly cosmetic approach to "Timorization", without having a broader integration strategy of power-sharing with the indigenous elites (see especially Chopra 2000). However, UNTAET still enjoyed broad support from the population and leadership and successfully conducted elections for a constitutional convention in August 2001 and for a president in April 2002. To summarize, both the UN-transitional authorities in Cambodia and in East Timor were charged with the tasks of democratization and peace-building. However, it was only in East Timor that the UN had full political control and had the responsibility for implementing stateness and economic reconstruction. While the institutional model of the UN protectorate in Cambodia was a hybrid co-government consisting of an administrating transitional authority and an interim power-sharing government of local factions, UNTAET was an exemplary case of a truly sovereign international interim government. The UN protectorate in Cambodia ceased five months after the interim government had accomplished the most basic tasks in democratization; whereas, the UN remained in East Timor even after it became a sovereign nation in May 2002. Though legislative and executive powers passed onto the government of Timor-Leste, UNMISET initially retained some administrative and advisory functions and responsibility for external defense and public secu-
rity, gradually handing over authority to the East Timorese defense force and the PNTL as they reached operational capacity (Banerjee 2005, 28). In both countries, interim governments achieved their short-term goals of democratization: founding elections of the new democracy, adoption of a new constitution and the inauguration of an elected government as well as national sovereignty in the case of East Timor. V. UNTAC's and UNTAET's Legacies Both international interim governments achieved their short term goals; however, there are still questions about long term achievements. What did the interim governments achieve in terms of sustainable peacebuilding and durable democratization? Which factors are responsible for the achievements and shortcomings of democratization and peace-building in both cases? Briefly, this study argues that the process of selecting the interim government and the fact that there were no constraints placed on the behavior of domestic elites after the interim regime had ceased, negatively affected the prospects of democracy in Cambodia. Furthermore, democratization and peace-building, which already faced dramatic challenges, were aggravated by choices of the UN transitional authority during the implementation phase. Even though UNTAET's legacy of peace-building, especially with regards to democratization, is more positive, the results are also weaker than initially expected by the international community and the East Timorese. Though human rights and democratic freedom have improved under transitional rule, the interim governments in both countries left mixed legacies. In contrast to optimists who view East Timor as an overwhelming success of peace-building and democratization under aegis of the United Nations, and pessimists, who describe UNTAC as a flop, this study argues that the performance of interim governments in both countries is best seen as a limited success. 1. Cambodia Concisely, the interim regime's achievements are as follows: stabilization was successful, peace-building was only a partial success and democratization was mostly a failure. UNTAC was able to repatriate a considerable number of refugees, and their presence gave Cambodia "nearly two years of breathing room for political development. By providing an internationally sanctioned time out from fighting, UNTAC reinforced the people's desire for peace" (Findlay 1995: 155). It created an environment, in which the threat of a new regional conflict was reduced, and the Cambodian people, for the first time in thirty years, could begin to think about the future of their country. UNTAC also conducted free and fair elections. UNTAC's presence forced the warring parties to moderate their tactics. The election, even though boycotted by the Khmer Rouge and held in a context of mutual
mistrust, turned out to be UNTAC's biggest success. Voter turnout was 89.5 per cent, despite the Khmer Rouge's threats to disrupt the poll (which did not materialize), and the elections ended with a surprising victory of the FUNCINPEC led by Prince Ranariddh. FUNCINPEC and the Buddhist Liberal Democatic Party together won 68 of 120 total seats in the National Assembly, whereas the CPP led by Hun Sen won 51 seats (Gallup 2002). At the end of the mission, a popularly elected government took over power from UNTAC. For the first time in over three decades, Cambodia had an unstable but legitimate government. Furthermore, any assessment of the interim government's performance must be placed in the historical context. To argue that there is no improvement in human rights, democratic freedoms or human security in general is misleading (Peou 2002, 522-4). On the other hand, for a number of reasons, the assumption that the interim government could achieve liberal democracy and political stability in an almost totally unpredictable national environment within an arbitrarily fixed period, after which international support would be dramatically curtailed, was unrealistic (Austin 2003, 196). First, the UN peacekeeping force could not realize the military component of the peace agreement. Demobilization and disarmament of the various factions were a critical shortcoming of the whole mission. From the summer 1992, the Khmer Rouge blocked disarmament of its troops and did not allow the peacekeeping force to enter its territory (Roberts 2001, 93-150). As a consequence of UNTAC's decision not to force disarmament of the Khmer Rouge, the other parties also denied disarming their troops. After the departure of the UN troops, fighting once again erupted. Although the civil war continued at a low intensity, it did not stop until 1997. Second, because the planned disarmament never took place, UNTAC also failed to provide a neutral political environment for the assumption of power by the newly-elected Cambodian government (Austin 2003; Peou 2005b). Failure to disarm and demobilize aggravated the security dilemma, particularly for the opposition factions. The more time UNTAC lost on the disarmament issue, the more the peace agreement eroded. Political and military tensions, and attacks on UNTAC-staff increased in numbers and intensity especially in the run-up to the elections. This, in turn, led UNTAC to restrict its presence more or less to the capital city (Sorpong 2000, 260-1). While all political parties violated the rules of the transition game, it seems that CPP and Khmer Rouge were responsible for most incidences. This development was an unintended consequence of another failure of UNTAC: the UN administration failed to bring the Cambodian bureaucracy under its control. UNTAC's lack of manpower (170 mission staff were expected to oversee more than 100,000 Cambodian civil servants under CPP control alone), technical difficulties and the failure of the UN staff, which hardly had any knowledge of the Cambodian history, culture or language, allowed the ruling Cambodian People's Party to shield the bureaucracy from UN surveillance.
Because UNTAC had to rely on the incumbent CPP officials, the dominant party maintained its grip on both the military and the administrative apparatus in the country. The interim government's operational problems, especially in the beginning phase of UNTAC, increased opportunities for the Khmer Rouge and the CPP for non-compliance as well as decreased any embryonic confidence the factions might have had in UNTAC's capabilities to provide neutrality and security (Peou 2002, Peou 2005b). Other UNTAC peace-building gaps which produced some of the current problems of democratic politics in Cambodia, originated in the failure to jump-start the rehabilitation of the economy and bring economic development to the rural communities, to improve the capacity of the civilian bureaucracy, to de-politicize civilian police and other security forces, and to initiate a process of transitional justice for past crimes against humanity, committed by CPP and Khmer Rouge (Doyle 2001, 103). Fourth and finally, the UN administration had only weak instruments to enforce the Cambodian parties to accept the outcome of the poll. While UNTAC was based on the consent of the factions as expressed in the Paris agreement, during the implementation period, the transitional authority found itself operating without the continuous or complete cooperation of the two most powerful political parties, the CPP and the Khmer Rouge. Although the success of voter registration and the high voter turn-out attested to the interim governments claim that most Cambodians endorsed the plan to introduce democracy in Cambodia, the CPP successfully re-established itself as the hegemonic political force. In fact, the Cambodian Peoples' Party as the main looser of the 1993-poll refused to accept the outcome, rather claiming that is was the result off fraud and UNTAC's partisanship to advantage the opposition. The political crisis was temporarily settled by building a grand coalition consisting of all relevant political parties. FUNCINPEC and the CPP formed a coalition government with Ranariddh and Hun Sen as First and Second Prime Minister of the new government. This compromise proved to be fragile. In 1997 conflicts between the two major parties escalated into bloody fights, viewed by many as a coup d'etat of Hun Sen (CPP) against Ranariddh. The organizational structures of the main opposition parties were damaged or destroyed, and many of their political leaders went into temporary exile. Why this escalation happened is to some extent a matter of dispute among observers. However, no matter why, the fighting of 1997 proved that the interim government failed to support an "elite settlement" and subsequently, did not lead to successful "elite convergence".8 Due to firm reaction of the international community, Hun Sen was forced to re-allow limited standards of competition in the 1998 and 2003 elections. Since the CPP effectively controlled the preparation of the polls, electoral defeat was unthinkable, although the polls "were generally well and fairly administered in a technical and organizational sense" (Gallup 2002, 41); however, the most serious problems of free and fair political com- 8 For the concept of elite settlemen and elite convergence, see Burton, Gunther and Higley (1992).
petition are external to the elections. The CPP used its overwhelming coercive power and resources to implement a strategy of "intimidation by incumbency", which effectively prevented a level playing field (ibid., 47-48). Although lacking a dramatic shift from electoral democracy to open autocracy, the failure of the UN mission in fulfilling critical parts of its mandate has nevertheless paved the way for the emergence of a new hegemonic one-party-system that is softer and more stable than any other regime has been for the last thirty years. Regarding the causes for the shortcomings of democratization, four critical factors can be identified: · First, the peace agreement faced a number of critical `birth defects'. The agreement constructed the interim regime as a "hybrid" co-government between the deeply divided Cambodian coalition government on the one hand and the UN-transitional authority on the other. It forced hostile parties into a political "shotgun wedding" ­ a marriage that "brought together political combatants for whom the election was a continuation of the war, rather than the basis for sharing power agreeably" (Roberts 2001, 47). The transitional authority's inappropriate framework, alongside with the enduring military and political strength of the CCP especially on local and regional levels transferred the political struggle from the battle-fields into the state itself: it "undermined political transition in the implementation phase as well as in the period between the two elections in 1993 and 1998. [...] stable democratic political transition was temporal in the short, UNTAC-term, and untenable in the longer term" (ibid., 49). · Second, the "Noah's Ark approach" (Dalpino 2002) of bringing all relevant parties into government and giving them their share of posts in cabinet and bureaucracy, led to double, sometimes even threefold structures. This approach not only sustained a dangerous level of factionalism, but also increased the likelihood of corruption. Rather than depoliticizing the CPP-controlled one-party state, power-sharing "created two separate and competing party states operating within every ministry, province, military command and police commissariat. Instead of working with their counterparts from the other party, officials from the prime ministers' level down conducted business with their party clients and colleagues" (Ashley 1998, 55). This retarded the already weak capacity of the public administration "by building and reinforcing parallel structures of personal and party authority, operating both within and outside the state" (op. cit.). This solution was also problematic with regards to the military situation. The size of the armed forces rose disproportionately, resulting in high military expenditures of 30 per cent of the total public expenditures. This temporarily avoided the problem of unemployed and dissatisfied soldiers. However, no central command structure under neutral supreme command developed. Rather, FUNCINPEC, KPNLF and CPP in fact were in control of their troops, promoting the political fractionalization of the army and securing the military predominance of the CPP.
· Third, the lack of strategic orientation in the international community also contributed to the negative developments of the 1990s. Even though the interim government's measures led to unintended and negative consequences in the early stages of the interim government, the international community stuck to its goal to democratize a country shattered by thirty years of civil war within only 18 months' time. The road-map for democratization was essentially restricted to the holding of free and fair elections without changing the existing structures of political and military power. The constitutional process was rushed and the political institutions were relatively weak at the end of the transition period. However, there were no precautions to bind the warring parties to respect democratic procedures after the election. The international community did not attempt to place constraints on the behavior of domestic factions after the transition period. The international community underestimated the difficulties of the mission, such as lack of political and social tolerance, civic values, experiences with peaceful and cooperative forms of conflict settlement and lacking elite settlement. At the same time, especially Western governments misperceived the strength of the exile parties like FUNCINPEC and the Buddhist Liberal Democratic Party. · Finally, the vested entrepreneurs of violence such as the Khmer Rouge, military commanders and various party cadres, had no interest in the stabilization of the state's coercive monopoly, civilian control over the military or the emergence of the rule of law because of their own economic interests in armssales, timber, gems, and drug-trafficking. The UN transitional authority neglected long-term development and capacity-building objectives which led to weak results in generating economic recovery, aggravating democratic development. However, UNTAC was not solely responsible for this, given that international donors provided only a fraction of what they had promised at the beginning of the peace process (Sorpong 2000). 2. East Timor In East Timor, the interim government's achievements are well-summarized by Martin and Mayer-Rieckh (2005, 142): "While the peace operations in East Timor did generally well in the areas of electoral assistance, traditional peacekeeping, humanitarian assistance and emergency rehabilitation, UNTAET consistently faced problems with institution building and governance tasks". The lack of a common understanding of capacity-building and the negligence of these issues in the early stages of the transitional authority retarded UNTAET's efforts at institution-building. While planning for UNTAET was cursory, the planning for UNMISET began early, allowing the transitional authority to develop a detailed and comprehensive plan for the follow-up mission (Martin and Mayer-
Rieckh 2005, 139). Even though the interim government in East Timor also ended without having established the social and economic pre-requisites for a working democracy and sustainable development, UNTAET and UNMISET still can be evaluated as more successful than UNTAC. Out of UNTAC's numerous mistakes and failures, lessons were drawn for UNTAET. Equipped with relatively large financial and personnel resources ­ compared to the country's small size ­ UNTAET was able to reach an unusually swift economic stabilization (Haughton 2001). The transition from UNTAET to UNMISET led only to a small decline of international engagement. Indeed, the UN Security Council and international donors realized that international support for East Timor was still vital. UNTAET was a success insofar as it provided security, and left East Timor with a much more stable environment. The transition to independence and democracy was surprisingly smooth. It is, nevertheless, still unclear if and when the young nation's economy and public administration will be able to stand on its on feet: Foreign aid made up 45 percent of GDP in 2001 (Haughton 2001). UN-staff still occupies many higher positions in civil administration, particularly in the judiciary and budgetary dependence is high (Cotton 2005, 1986). Furthermore, frustrated former guerrilla fighters and the remnants of pro-Indonesian militias pose a serious internal security problem for the new country, as does rising crime levels, inefficient police force and a weak judiciary. The ability of Timor-Leste's security forces to contain these threats without U.N. help must be seriously questioned. Repatriation of refugees, reconciliation and transitional justice for past crimes against humanity, committed by militias and the Indonesian military has ceased. Unemployment is estimated at between 60 and 80 percent and more than 50 percent of the country's 800,000 people or so live on less than $0.55 a day. The slow pace of reconstruction and high unemployment levels are an additional source of disorder. Antigovernment demonstrations in East Timor's capital city, Dili, in July 2004 involving former guerilla fighters indicate a growing frustration among veterans who feel robbed of their independence dividend in a fledging nation with a profoundly week economy and high unemployment. The process of selecting the members of the Falintil-Forca Defesa Timor-Leste (Falintil-FDTL) and the police (NPET) created resentment among loyalists of President Xanana Gusmao, who were intergrated into Falintil-FDTL, and dissident Ex-Falintil fighters under the patronage of the Minister for the Interior, who found a home in the police service and some elements of local government (Global Information Network, 23 July 2004; Cotton 2005, 189). While the former liberation movement Fretilin consolidates its near-hegemonic power and its prime minister openly boasts that the party will be in power for the next fifty years (Smith 2004, 281), the politicization of the security apparatus and attempts by the Ministry of the Interior to use disaffected veterans as a
counterforce to loyalists of the president in the army point to various potentially destabilizing effects from East Timor's semi-presidential system (King 2003, Shoesmith 2003). In new democracies, the dual leadership system and institutionalized competition of democratic legitimacies in semi-presidentialism in general is a recipe for political trouble (cf. Elster, Preuss and Offe 1998; Ackerman 2000). In East Timor, however, the fact that "the individuals occupying these two critical leadership positions are political opponents, perhaps even political enemies" (Shoesmith 2003, 231) further aggravates democratic consolidation.
VI. Conclusion
Bearing in mind that each country's situation is unique to some degree and that its lessons may in fact be limited, it is nevertheless possible to reach some conclusions. First, differences in the nature of the conflict and the domestic constellation of involved factions had an enormous impact on the challenges the two UN interim regimes had to face A first glance on the propositions for the applicability of the international interim government model suggests that this model was wellsuited for Cambodia but not for East Timor. At the dawn of the interim government, Cambodia fulfilled at least four of the five criteria, while the genuine will of the domestic parties to comply with the rules of the peace agreement remained a key unknown. In contrast to Cambodia, there was literally no state in East Timor. There was also no regime which controlled the legitimate means of violence. In autumn 1999, rouge elements within TNI and the uncertain course of Indonesian democratization seemed to pose an enormous threat to the interim regime.
Table 3: Applicability of the International Interim Government Model in Cambodia and East Timor
Cambodia East Timor
1. Intact state institutions
No State
2. Incumbent regime exerts control over the means of violence Yes
No incumbent regime
3. Foreign patrons support the interim government
Rouge TNI elements
4. Domestic parties have a genuine interest in peace
5. Domestic parties are able to communicate and interact
At closer inspection, however, in turns out that the model of international interim government was highly suitable for East Timor. Furthermore, East Timor, to some extent was even `easier' then Cambodia, because the UN did not have to achieve just peace and negotiate with the warring parties. By the time the interim regime was established, there were conditions of success that are rarely available to peace mis-
sions. The belligerent power had completely withdrawn and an effective multinational force could credibly provide security. The local population enthusiastically welcomed the transitional authority. There was a single domestic faction with which to negotiate ­ rather than a number of hostile factions as in Cambodia (cf. Chopra 2000, 28) While it is true that the main challenge in East Timor was to build a state and a nation from the ground up, the situation in East Timor was different from the conditions of `failed states' which are unsuited to the model. The main obstacle for the establishment of an UN-led interim regime in failed states is the disintegration of the state which leads to de facto privatization of the state's control over the means of legitimate violence and to dispersion of political power. In East Timor, the issue was not power dispersion but a sudden power vacuum the Indonesian left behind after their retreat. While Fretilin was too weak to take advantage of the situation, INTERFET filled the existing vacuum within less than two months time. In fact, within a couple of months, a new "proto-state under United Nations tutelage" (Malay, Sampford and Thakur 2003, 3) emerged. The non-existence of an incumbent regime disposed the interim government from any dual authority problem between the authority in power and the United Nations Transitional Authority. This institutional and political tabula rasa of post-Indonesian East Timor actually provided opportunities for the effective functioning of the interim government. The question remained as to whether the transitional authority would understand and utilize these opportunities. Second, perhaps the most basic lesson to be learned from UN-led interim governments in Cambodia and East Timor is that having the support of the local population is critical, but this alone is not sufficient. Successful UN-led interim governments, also require elite settlement and the support of the regional powers and international patrons of local clients. Third, "liberal protectorates" can be a solution to the problems of civil strife, insecurity and political instability in disrupted states. Under specific circumstances, described by Shain, Linz and others, this type of interim government can provide an escape from the primal condition of bellum omnium contra omnes posited by Thomas Hobbes in his seminal tractatus "Leviathan" on the conditions and foundations of human peace. However, sustainable peace-building and transition from authoritarianism to fully institutionalized liberal democracy requires more than ending civil strife. As Austin writes, "immediately satisfactory elections do not necessarily mean that a democratic government or any of the essential elements of democracy (the rule of law, and independent judiciary and a professional non-partisan civil service including the police and military, and another `free and fair' election) will be guaranteed" (Austin 2003, 189). Particularly in the case of international interim governments, democratizers face a dilemma: in order to reach an agreement, they must
assume all domestic parties will participate in good faith but in order to implement peace-building. At the same time, however, the must take reassurances taken against the case that the parties will not or cannot fulfill the agreement made (Doyle 2003, 542). So, "empire lite" cannot solve the problem the great French philosopher Alexis de Tocquveville has articulated in his observations On Democracy in America: whereas the democratic state and liberal institutions may establish peace, they cannot bring forth democracy and freedom by themselves. "They give individuals a free government but not the spirit of liberty" (Tocqueville 2000: 302). Here, the power of liberal imperialism ends. Fourth, democratization through international interim governments in civil-war countries will be successful, only if the transitional authority is able to maintain a "hurting balance of power" (Sorpong), in which all parties realize that continuing the struggle will harm them more than they will benefit. This was the UN's failure in Cambodia. UNTAC was neither able to establish a stable hurting balance of power nor could it guarantee the parties' compliance with democratic procedures. Fifth, dual authority arrangements and co-governance, as in Cambodia, is as problematic as the idea that coercion is able to transform a political shotgun wedding into a happy marriage. Therefore, grand coalition governments following the "Noah's Ark approach" are highly questionable. Even when conflict escalation during the transition process is prevented, the grand coalition rests on the hope that actors learn to trust each other. The Cambodian experience shows that this hope will rest on a shaky ground, if the actors expect coercion to vanish after the protector has withdrawn from the country. Sixth, if the commitment of the international community is restricted to the solution of technical problems and if it leaves politics to the national elite, democratization de facto becomes an exit-strategy (Ehrke 2003). The Cambodian elite commenced fighting after UNTAC had departed. The democratization process came to a halt and, finally, led to a new authoritarian regime. Obviously it does not make sense to leave the fate of a young democracy in the hands of anti-democratic national elites; however, this was exactly what took place in Cambodia. Rather, the international community must have the will to take responsibility for social and economic reconstruction and to intervene even after the transition process, if there are any negative aberrations occurring afterwards. Cambodia and East Timor prove that democratization must be embedded in a comprehensive agenda of political, social and economic methods of peace-building. This means that the protectorate will be very expensive for the international community, both in terms of time and in terms of financial and human resources. As a result, interim governments run the risk of becoming never-ending self-replicating political realities. It's a moot point whether the foreign governments and the international community want to accept such enormous responsibilities in countries outside of their own political backyard (Bosnia, the Kosovo) and
where engagement will not yield significant security or economic benefits. The opposition of the U.S. government and others to UNMISET's extension, and their insistence on a limited, one-year mandate for UNOTIL, is representative for this problem. If interim governments end before the roots of democracy are deep enough and before democratic institutions are strong enough to stand alone, then the entire endeavor may fail. References Ackerman, B. (2000), `The New Separation of Powers', Harvard Law Review, 3, pp. 633-730. ADB (2003), Key Indicators of Developing Asian and Pacific Countries 2003, Manila: Oxford University Press. ADB (various issues), Annual Report, Manila: Oxford University Press. ADB (various issues), Asian Development Outlook , Manila: Oxford University Press. Ashley, D. (1998), `The Failure of Conflict Resolution in Cambodia', in F. Z. Brown; D. G. Timberman (eds.), Cambodia and the International Community: The Quest for Peace, Development and Democracy, Armonk, NY: M.E. Sharpe,, download 13/09/2003. Austin, D. (2003), `Democracy and Democratization', in W. Maley, C. Sampford and R. Thakur, eds., From Civil Strife to Civil Society: Civil and Military Responsibilities in Disrupted States, Tokyo and New York: United Nations University Press, pp. 180-204. Banerjee, D. (2005), `Current Trends in UN Peacekeeping: A Perspective from Asia', International Peacekeeping, 1 (12), pp. 18-33. Bunce, V. (2000), `Comparative Democratization. Big and Bounded Generalization', Comparative Political Studies 6 (33), pp. 703-734. Burton, M. G.; Gunther, R.; Higley, J. (1992) `Introduction: Elite Transformations and Democratic Regimes', in J. Higley; R. Gunther (eds.) Elites and Democratic Consolidation in Latin America and Southern Europe, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, pp. 1-38. Chawla, S. (2001), `Shaping East Timor: A Dimension of United Nations Peacekeeping', Strategic Analysis, 12 (24), Chopra, J. (2000), `The UN's Kingdom of East Timor', Survivial, 3 (42), pp. 27-39. Cooper, R. (2002) `Why We Still Need Empires', The Observer, Sunday, April 27, 2002 [,11581,680117,00.html], download 3/10/2003. Cotton, J. (2005), `East Timor in 2004', Asian Survey, 1 (45), pp. 186-190. Dalpino, C. E. (2002), From Paris to Bonn: Lessons for Afghanistan from the Cambodian Transition, The Asia Foundation Working Paper 14, June, San Francisco: Asia Foundation. Demokratie. In: Europдische Rundschau, 1/2002, S. 105-113.
Diamond, L., J. J. Linz and S. M. Lipset (1995), `Introduction: What Makes for Democracy?', in Diamond, L., J. J. Linz and S. M. Lipset, eds., Politics in Developing Countries. Comparing Experiences with Democracy, second edition, Boulder and London: Lynne Rienner Publishers, pp. 1-67. Doyle, M. W. (2001), `Peacebuilding in Cambodia: Legitimacy and Power', in E. M. Cousens and C. Kumar, eds., Peacebuilding as Politics: Cultivating Peace in Fragile Societies, Boulder and London: Lynne Rienner Publishers, pp. 90-113. Doyle, M. W. (2003b), `War Making and Peace Making: The United Nation's Post-Cold War Record', in C. A. Crocker, F. O. Hampson and P. Aall, eds., Turbulent Peace. The Challenges of Managing International Conflict, Washington, D.C.: United States Institute of Peace Press, pp. 515-528. Ehrke, M. (2003): `Von der Raubцkonomie zur Rentenцkonomie. Mafia, Bьrokratie und internationales Mandat in Bosnien`[From Predatory Economy to Rent Economy. Mafia, Bureaucracy and International Mandate in Bosnia], Internationale Politik und Gesellschaft [International Politics and Society], 2, pp. 123154. Elster, J., C. Offe and U. K. Preuss (1998), Institutional Design in Post-communist Societies. Rebuilding the Ship at Sea, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Findlay, T. (1995), Cambodia: The Legacy and Lessons of UNTAC, Oxford: Oxford University Press. Gallup, J. (2002), `Cambodia's Electoral System: A Window of Opportunity for Reform', in E. Croissant; G. Bruns; M. John (eds.), Electoral Politics in Southeast & East Asia, Singapore: FES, pp. 25-75. Gorjгo, P. (2002), `Regime Change and foreign policy: Portugal, Indonesia and the Self-determination of East Timor', Democratization, 9. Gorjгo, P. (2003), `The Legacy and Lessons of the United Nations Transitional Administration in East Timor', Contemporary Southeast Asia, 2, 313-333. Haughton, J. (1998), The Reconstruction of War-torn Economies, CAER II Discussion Paper No. 23, Cambridge, M.A.: Harvard Institute for International Development. Haughton, J. (2001), `Reconstruction of War-torn Economies: Lessons for East Timor, in H. Hall; J. M. Saldanha (eds.), East Timor. Development Challenges for the World's Newest Nation, Singapore and Canberra: ISEAS, pp. 288-306. Hoadley, S. (1976), `East Timor: Civil War ­ Causes and Consequences', Southeast Asian Affairs 1976, Singapore: ISEAS, pp. 411-419. Hobbes, T. (1996), Leviathan, edited by R. Tuck, rev. ed., Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Huntington, S. P. (1991), The Third Wave. Democratization in the Late Twentieth Century, Norman and London: University of Oklahoma Press. Ignatieff, M. (2003) Empire Lite. Nation Building in Kosovo, Bosnia, Afghanistan, Toronto: Penguin Canada. Kiernan, B. (1998), The Pol Pot Regime: Race, Power, and Genocide in Cambodia under the Khmer Rouge, 1975-1070, New Haven and London: Yale University Press. Kiernan, B. (2002), `Conflict in Cambodia, 1945-2002', Critical Asian Studies, 4, pp. 483-495. Kiernan, B. (2004), How Pol Pot Came to Power. Colonialism, Nationalism, and Communism in Cambodia, 1930-1975, 2nd edition, New Haven and London: Yale University Press. King, D.Y. (2003), `East Timor's Founding Elections and Emerging Party System', Asian Survey, 5 (43), pp. 747-757.
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