I infer that sanctions are a set of non-military strategies to influence the behavior of other countries. Reviewing the sources cited in that wikipedia article (and related articles; for example the references for the article on Economic Sanctions raise doubts about the effectiveness of sanctions and whether they are intended to be effective or merely symbolic.
I've done the simple research with google and wikipedia, but I don't feel that I'm prepared to confront the scholarly research. Is there an analytical framework that would help me to read and understand papers on sanctions? Which of the following questions are mostly likely to be useful in understanding sanctions? (and which are likely to lead me into more confusion?)
- Are sanctions effective?
- How should I evaluate the effectiveness of a given sanction
- Why would a country choose sanctions rather than other options?
- What are the alternatives to sanctions?
- Why would a country select one sanction over another?