In the writing of Charles Tilly’s “War Making and State making as organized Crime” he argues that war is the primary cause of state formation (Tilly 1985,170). From Tilly’s point of view, Somalia supports the argument Tilly makes about how states form. Therefore even though Somalia is not current day Britain; it carries the opportunity to monopolize through war making and state making. In other words, Somalia is a representative example of Tilly’s argument regarding state formation. Therefore Somalia is comparable in certain areas to the development of medieval Europe because Britain and Italy separated Somalia’s territory. (Maass 2001). This leaves Somalia without a monopoly to rule its entire territory.
Therefore with comparison to Tilly’s argument, state’s before their formation had to persevere in a lengthy process of war making to develop into distinguishable states (Tilly 1985,173).This long process that assisted how states were to come about is called state making, war making, extraction, and protection (Tilly 1985,183-184). In other words Somalia like medieval Europe is also undergoing the same process. Ultimately, this paper will argue that Somalia support’s Charles Tilly’s theory of state formation. Evidently, if war making is persevering, Somalia will become a state that wins in its efforts to monopolize its forces. This paper will first illustrate how Somalia represents state making according to Tilly’s four characteristics of state.
To start off, the organizations within Somalia are active in both war making and state making. For example, business men and the sheikh in Somalia try to develop a new government by gaining support from warlords with money. Even more so, they fund the militia to stop the checkpoints within Somalia that stop travelers for tribute (Maass 2001). This is a clear representation of state making with businessman and warlords as rivals within a territory, in this case Somalia.
Moreover, this situation not only represents state making but how war making reinforces state making vice versa as Tilly’s theory suggests (Tilly 1985, 181). To put in perspective, war making promotes extraction which increases both war making again and state making (Tilly 1985, 181-183). In Somalia’s case, the business men and sheikh that invest in the militia are engaging in war making by funding the militia. Even more so, there are people that recognize that the sheikh, the head of the militia, receives foreign investments to support the militia’s power. This ultimately supports the militia in its quest to gain control over the south region of Somalia (Maass 2000). This shows that investing in the militia’s power is war making which reinforces their quest to dominate within Somalia also known as state making; this supports Tilly’s theory of state formation. To further include, protection is also offered by the organizations in Somalia. For example, the absence of government in Somalia results in the Sheikh and business men paying warlords for protection.
Due to this the Sheikh and businessmen also form the militia; to protect the cable men doing their jobs (Maass 2001). Evidently, the protection that is paid from these groups supports Tilly’s argument that war making, protection, and state making are dependent on one another (Tilly 1985, 182). Over all, Somalia’s circumstances does support Tilly’s claim the characteristics of state formation.
Tilly’s chapter of “War making and State making as Organized Crime” opens the door of understanding Somalia’s future as a state. In comparison to medieval Europe, Somalia has the opportunity to monopolize into a state. However not without complications, due to the sheikh gaining incentives from foreigners. (Maass, 2000) In light of this, receiving power from outside states can cause organizations within the territory to obtain overwhelming power; old Europe did not have such great of power, which lead them to a civil government (Tilly 1985,186). Therefore, Somalia’s leaders obtaining power from outside sources will pose not only problems for ordinary people but the business-men themselves.
For example, as Tilly mentions in Europe people resisted to the ruler’s war making and state making. This lead to compromises and a system of civil liberties granted to appease the people (Tilly 1985,183). However, recent states do not experience resistance from citizens due to the military’s overwhelming power (Tilly 1985, 186). Likewise for Somalia, the Sheikh and militia aim to unite Somalia under Islam. In the event that this occurs the business organization in Somalia will want to get rid of the militia, which may potentially lead to another war (Maass 2000). This all reflects Charles Tilly’s argument regarding state formation and war’s creating states (Tilly 1985, 170). With this in mind, perhaps the militia will monopolize Somalia into a state and perhaps not. Even more so, the businessmen of Somalia also have this opportunity, if they can show that they can run a government successfully in the city of Mogadishu (Maass 2001).
In either case this ultimately leaves Somalia to continue the process of war making, state making, protection, and extraction. All things considered, the one group who is the most determined in this process will monopolize Somalia into a single state. Reference ListMaass.
Peter. 2001. “Ayn Rand Comes to Somalia.” The Atlantic, May, 2001. https://www.theatlantic.
com/magazine/archive/2001/05/ayn-rand-comes-to-somalia/302209/Maass. Peter. 2000.
“Court Martial.” http://www.petermaass.com/articles/court_martial/Tilly, Charles. 1985. “War Making and State Making as Organized Crime.
” In Bringing theState back in, edited by Peter B. Evans. Dietrich Rueschemeyer and Theda Skocpol, 169-91. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.