South Sudan’s Civil War

Violence, Insurgency and Failed Peacemaking

John Young

South Sudan’s Civil War

John Young

Distributed for Zed Books

256 pages | 5 1/2 x 8 1/2
Paper $29.95 ISBN: 9781786993748 Published January 2019 For sale in North and South America only
Cloth $95.00 ISBN: 9781786993755 Published January 2019 For sale in North and South America only
A mere two years after achieving independence, South Sudan in 2013 descended into violent civil war, refuting US government claims that the country’s succession was a major foreign policy success and would end endemic conflict. Worse was to follow when the international community declared famine in 2017. In the first book-length study of the South Sudan civil war, John Young draws on his close but critical relationship with the rebel SPLM-IO leadership to reveal the true dynamics of the conflict, and reveals how the South Sudanese state was in dire crisis long before its outbreak. 

With unparalleled insider knowledge of the histories and motivations of the rebellion’s chief protagonists, Young delves deeper into the crisis and argues that considerable responsibility for the present state of South Sudan must be laid at the door of the US-led peace process. Expertly linking the role of the international community with the country’s opposition politics, South Sudan’s Civil War is an essential guide to the causes and consequences of the violence that has engulfed one of Africa’s most troubled nations. 
Review Quotes
Economist
“An academic with close connections to some of the group’s leaders, Young . . . argues that unlike similar movements in neighbouring Uganda, Ethiopia and Eritrea, which took power a generation earlier, the SPLM never showed any interest, let alone competence, in administering its liberated territories.”
Alan Boswell, journalist
“The most definitive account yet of America’s debacle in South Sudan and the South Sudanese civil war. Young prophetically warned of South Sudan’s fate in his last book. This time, everyone should listen. No outsider has a closer or more clear-eyed view of South Sudan’s rebel movement.”
Günther Schlee, Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology
“Young tells a sad story about Sudan and South Sudan, about human nature and American meddling, based on countless conversations with the key actors. It might disillusion many readers, but it also rings true.”
Tim Allen, London School of Economics
“Young describes the appalling events in South Sudan since 2013 with clarity and insight. He has a written a book that anyone wanting to know about South Sudan now will need to read.”
Atta El-Battahani, University of Khartoum
“Combining insights from recent history with rigorous research, Young’s timely study shows how outside attempts to create peace wrought endless havoc for the people of South Sudan. A must read for all those looking to put things right.”
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