The Political Role of the Military: An International Handbook

By Constantine P. Danopoulos; Cynthia Watson | Go to book overview

UNITED STATES

Stephen J. Cimbala

The issue of military legal and political subordination to duly-constituted civil political authority has long been a decided issue in American politics.1 Nevertheless, the Cold War presented to U.S. policymakers and military planners some unexpected and unprecedented challenges.2 The Cold War U.S. military was qualitatively as well as quantitatively different from its predecessor.3 The following discussion identifies some of the most important attributes of the Cold War U.S. armed forces and their political setting in terms of their implications for civil-military relations.4 These attributes are bipolarity and U.S.-Soviet hostility; nuclear weapons and mutual deterrence; defense reorganization and developments in command-control technology; the experience of Vietnam and other cases of low-intensity conflict; and, finally, the development of an allvolunteer armed force. Some comments will also anticipate the future international environment and its implications for civil-military relations.


BIPOLARITY AND U.S.-SOVIET CONFLICT

The international system of the Cold War was an unexpected outcome of an unexpected war. The United States had hoped prior to the outbreak of World War II to withdraw to the stance of splendid isolationism that had supposedly characterized its foreign policy prior to World War I. However, this effort at interwar military self-effacement was already compromised by several factors. First, the U.S. imperialist experience in the aftermath of the Spanish-American war gave to Americans a heady sense of world engagement, however selective that engagement might be. Second, European security concerns would not go away from American national interests. To the contrary, during the 1930s the two became inextricably linked. The major significance of Franklin Roosevelt's election to the presidency was not apparent at first blush; touted by his partisans

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The Political Role of the Military: An International Handbook
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Preface ix
  • Introduction xi
  • Argentina 1
  • Notes 16
  • References 17
  • Brazil 19
  • Notes 34
  • References 41
  • Canada 42
  • Notes 53
  • References 54
  • China 55
  • Notes 67
  • References 70
  • Cuba 71
  • Notes 84
  • References 86
  • Denmark 88
  • Notes 100
  • References 105
  • Egypt 107
  • Notes 118
  • References 121
  • France 122
  • References 141
  • Germany 143
  • Notes 152
  • References 153
  • Greece 154
  • Notes 167
  • References 168
  • India 169
  • Notes 186
  • References 188
  • Indonesia 189
  • Notes 205
  • References 206
  • Iran 207
  • Israel 223
  • Notes 233
  • References 234
  • Japan 235
  • Notes 252
  • References 255
  • Kenya 256
  • Notes 269
  • References 270
  • Mexico 271
  • Notes 281
  • References 282
  • Netherlands 283
  • Notes 295
  • References 297
  • Nigeria 299
  • Notes 320
  • References 322
  • North Korea 323
  • Notes 335
  • References 337
  • Peru 338
  • Notes 355
  • References 360
  • Poland 361
  • Notes 371
  • References 373
  • Republic of South Africa 374
  • Notes 387
  • References 390
  • Russia and the Former Soviet Union 391
  • Notes 401
  • References 403
  • United Kingdom 404
  • Notes 415
  • United States 420
  • Notes 437
  • References 439
  • Zaire 440
  • Notes 456
  • References 458
  • Index 459
  • CONTRIBUTORS 515
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