Discontinuities in Signaling Behavior Upon the Decision for War: An Analysis of China’s Prewar Signaling Behavior
International Relations of the Asia-Pacific. DOI: 10.1093/irap/lcu023
49 Pages Posted: 27 Jul 2012 Last revised: 14 Dec 2015
Date Written: July 25, 2012
There is always a time gap between the decision for war and its implementation. I exploit this time gap to study how the signaling of resolve changes after the decision for war is made, based on the wars that China fought since 1949. I study the series of signals that China sent after it had made its decisions for war in Korea (1950), India (1962) and Vietnam (1979), and compare them with the signals sent just before the decisions were made. I find patterns in Chinese prewar signaling that reflect how strategic incentives for the signaling of resolve change before and after the decision for war. The study generates theoretical expectations on discontinuities in signaling behavior upon the decision for war – an unexplored research area with direct policy implications.
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation