Talk:Civil war

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 Definition Armed conflict within an existing state, normally over the question of who shall wield power within the state, or how the state is to be governed, but there may be other causes; for instance, the oppression of a minority. [d] [e]
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How narrowly to define Civil War?

These wars clearly involved an existing and rebel government.

There are revolutionary wars, however, that are, in fact, called civil wars by at least some of the participants. It was the Communist position that a civil war existed in South Vietnam between the Government of Viet Nam and the (multiple names) Revolutionary Government, supported but not controlled by the North. Some argument can be made for this, although the matter clearly was settled by conventional invasion.

The American revolutionaries were, in many cases, former British officials and officers. Had Britain successfully sent a force that defeated the Colonial army, would the American Civil War have been the nastiness in the 18th, not 19th, century?

Quite a few historians treat the Algerian War as both revolution and civil war; it was clearly not a Communist-style "War of National Liberation" with a major external force operating from sanctuary outside the border, foreign troops, etc.

How do we handle this? I would suggest a second disambiguation table of wars where the "civil war" designation is not as commonly used, but has some historical recognition. We don't usually call the breakup of Yugoslavia a civil war, but, again, consider what it might have been called had Ulysses S. Milosevic had put down the rebels? Howard C. Berkowitz 14:15, 24 March 2009 (UTC)

Yes, I agree. Wikipedia has Yugoslav Wars:

Keep you busy, Howard! Ro Thorpe 14:37, 24 March 2009 (UTC)