Ådalen och bloody sunday

En jämförande fallstudie av militärt våld

The 1900s saw two incidents of states using their military in civil disorder situations, which resulted in the killing of unarmed citizens. May 14, 1931 in Ådalen, marks a significant part of Swedish history and its view of the use of military force.  On that day, a peaceful protest march escalated, which resulted in live firing by the military stationed there to uphold law and order. This resulted in the deaths of five civilians and the prohibition of the use of military force in incidents of civil disorder. In 1972 in Northern Ireland a similar event took place on January 30, which is commonly known as Bloody Sunday. The Troubles were raging and resulted in protests for civil rights by nationalists. On that day a protest march escalated and the soldiers from the 1st Battalion of the Parachute Regiment were sent in to the city and killed fifteen civilians. This marked the worst case of military abuse in The Troubles, but resulted in no further restrictions on the use of military force in the United Kingdom.     The issue in this thesis is how cultural factors affect states? views of the use of military force.The purpose of this thesis is to increase the understanding of how two cases of the use of military force against civilians, can have such different outcomes and expression. The theory used in the thesis comes from the book The Culture of National Security and explains how a state?s norms, culture and identity affect its national security.    The conclusion is that a change in a state?s culture and identity affects the state?s view of the use of military force. Sweden had a major change in identity, which resulted in a new law against the use of military force in cases of civil disorder. The United Kingdom did not have a major identity change, which resulted in no major changes to policy on the use of military force.


Robbin Eriksson

Lärosäte och institution



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