Violent uprisings last about two and a half times as long as non-violent campaigns on average. Brutal repression of a non-violent campaign can end the conflict quickly. Widespread defection among the security forces also leads to a relatively quick end to a non-violent campaign. If the security forces defect, the chances of success for a non-violent campaign increase substantially. Defection can take the form of desertion or shirking (standing idly by) and not following orders to repress. Non-violent tactics are much more likely to lead to defection than violent tactics.
Gates, Scott; Marianne Dahl & Håvard Mokleiv Nygård (2016) Standing Idly by during the Revolution, PRIO Policy Brief, 15. Oslo: PRIO.