Patriots for Profit: Contractors and the Military in U.S. National Security

By Thomas C. Bruneau | Go to book overview

2
A COMPARATIVE APPROACH TO THE ANALYSIS
OF CIVIL–MILITARY RELATIONS

In this chapter I propose an approach to the study of civil–military relations that can be used comparatively and will be equally applicable to both old and new democracies. This framework is the foundation for the following chapters, which conceptualize and then integrate the empirical material on U.S. civil–military relations and private security contractors. I started to develop the framework shortly after I began, in 1996, to conduct programs for CCMR in new democracies on four continents. While preparing these one-week seminars, which deal with virtually all aspects of what militaries and other state instruments do to achieve security around the globe, I found the available literature of very limited value. Consequently, CCMR instructors developed course materials empirically, from the ground up, and learned to adapt them to each evolving national context. This situation enabled me to use both the seminar programs abroad and the graduate resident courses in Monterey as research opportunities, where I could gather new ideas and information and test them out in different contexts on diverse audiences. This chapter thus is a further refinement of what I have learned and written over the past decade or more and an expansion of the framework so that it can be applied specifically to the United States.

In the latter part of this chapter I illustrate the utility of the framework by applying it to some recent studies from Latin America. This is not an analysis per se because I did not personally collect the data to test the framework. The two publications to which I will refer were undertaken both as scholarly projects and to provide material for civilian decision makers interested in pro

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