Magazine article DISAM Journal

Center for Civil-Military Relations (CCMR)

Magazine article DISAM Journal

Center for Civil-Military Relations (CCMR)

Article excerpt

Established in 1994, CCMR is dedicated to strengthening civil-military relationships in democracies worldwide. CCMR helps nations resolve issues resulting from defense transformation, stability and support operations, peacekeeping, combating terrorism, and other security challenges. In the past two years, the Center has helped educate approximately 7,000 foreign military officers and civilians in programs conducted in host countries and in the United States.

What Do We Do?

CCMR custom builds each of its programs and course materials to address the specific requirements and circumstances of each participating country. Programs are designed for mid-to-senior-grade military officers, civilian officials, legislators, and personnel from nongovernmental organizations, both in residence (at the Naval Postgraduate School) and overseas (in the requesting nation). All programs provide participants with insights and analytical tools for enhancing civil-military cooperation at all levels.

All of the Center's programs emphasize three main goals:

* Consolidate and deepen democracy (with particular reference to national defense and the armed forces);

* Increase the effectiveness of the armed forces in fulfilling the multiple roles and missions assigned to them by their democratically elected civilian leaders;

* Seek success in the most efficient manner possible at the lowest possible costs.

CCMR programs utilize a variety of instructional methods, including lectures and discussion groups to foster interaction among the participants and faculty. Most programs also include real-world case studies and simulation exercises.

Why Teach Civil-Military Relations?

In a democracy, those who govern have power by virtue of a popular vote of their country's citizens. While not similarly elected, the military also holds power. Consequently, effective civil-military relations--the relationship between elected civilian leaders and the military--are vital to those seeking to create a government that is ultimately responsive to the people who elected it. The key issue remains how a democratic government can exert control over the military, rather than the other way around.

The study and teaching of civil-military relations is important in that unless civilians know how to establish and manage key institutions, real democratic civil-military relations cannot be achieved.

By employing a "lessons-learned and best-practice approach," civilians can learn how to control the military, and officers can come to understand that, in the long run, such control benefits them and their nation.

CCMR Programs

CCMR offers a number of seminars and workshops that further civil-military relations. Many of the courses are offered in-residence (at the Naval Postgraduate School) or through Mobile Education Teams (METs). METs are specifically targeted to a country's needs while in-residence courses offer participants the opportunity to meet, work, and share views with senior military and civilian officials on similar issues and problems.

Our overseas and in-residence programs are divided into the following categories:

* Civil-military relations

* Peacekeeping

* Civil-military responses to terrorism

* International defense acquisition and management

* Implementing strategic planning

Civil-Military Programs

Below is a sample listing and summary of our various courses that promote civilian control of the military.

Civil-Military Relations MET

Civilian-Control of the Armed Forces in a Democracy MET

The Media and the Military MET

The Legislature and the Military MET

Executive Program in Defense Decision-Making--In residence

Intelligence and Democracy--In residence and MET

Defense Restructuring--In residence and MET

Civil-Military Relations MET

A five-day seminar focusing on "democratic defense decision-making" in a wide variety of areas. …

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