Are Drone Strikes Effective in Afghanistan and Pakistan? On the Dynamics of Violence between the United States and the Taliban

David Jaeger, Zahra Siddique

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

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Abstract

Strikes by unmanned aerial vehicles, or drones, have been the primary weapon used by the USA to combat the Taliban and Al-Qaeda in Afghanistan and Pakistan. This article examines the dynamics of violence involving drone strikes and the Taliban/Al-Qaeda in Afghanistan and Pakistan from 1 January 2007 to 30 September 2011. We find that drone strikes have a stronger impact on Taliban/Al-Qaeda violence in Pakistan than in Afghanistan and that these results are robust to examining different time periods and lag structures. We also examine the impact of successful and unsuccessful drone strikes (which did or did not succeed in targeted killing of a militant leader) on terrorist attacks by the Taliban. We find strong effects of unsuccessful drone strikes on Taliban violence in Pakistan, suggesting important vengeance and deterrent effects. (JEL codes: C32, D74).
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)667–697
Number of pages31
JournalCESifo Economic Studies
Volume64
Issue number4
Early online date15 May 2018
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2018

Structured keywords

  • ECON Applied Economics

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