To read this content please select one of the options below:

Militarization of the Syrian revolution: was this the wrong choice?

Armenak Tokmajyan (Tampere Peace Research Institute, University of Tampere, Tampere, Finland)

Journal of Aggression, Conflict and Peace Research

ISSN: 1759-6599

Article publication date: 13 April 2015




The purpose of this paper is to question the effectiveness of violence, armed rebellion in this case, as a means to topple oppressors. It takes the Syrian armed rebellion as a case study.


This paper empirically examines arguments about nonviolent actions and their effectiveness and how violent action harmed the Syrian revolution. The paper adopts the Syrian revolution as a case study.


The paper finds that the shift from nonviolent to violent action harmed the revolution. However, the Syrian case remains hypothetical because the uprising tuned violent already in late 2011. Nevertheless, based on statistical and academic observations the paper finds that the impact of the militarization has been destructive without fulfilling the uprising's goals.

Research limitations/implications

Because the Syrian conflict is a recent one, still ongoing, and there is a time lag in the publication of academic papers and books, this paper necessarily draws on newspaper articles and online sources in presenting the case study.


The paper looks at the developments of the Syrian conflict from a different angle than the mainstream narratives. Furthermore, it contributes to the field of nonviolence studies by investigating the new Syrian case, which has not been well-systematically researched from this perspective.



Tokmajyan, A. (2015), "Militarization of the Syrian revolution: was this the wrong choice?", Journal of Aggression, Conflict and Peace Research, Vol. 7 No. 2, pp. 101-111.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2015, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Related articles