Military Ascendancy, Civilian Disinterest: Contemporary Civil-Military Relations in America.
ARMY COMMAND AND GENERAL STAFF COLL FORT LEAVENWORTH KS SCHOOL OF ADVANCED MIL ITARY STUDIES
Pagination or Media Count:
Numerous contemporary political and military observers have suggested that there are profound problems in contemporary American civil-military relations. Some have even suggested that there is in fact a crisis in civil-military relations. Base closings, the departure of ROTC from college campuses and the general geographic retreat of the military from large portions of the country are reducing the opportunity for civil-military contact. Large numbers of meritocratic civilians are currently assuming leadership positions in all levels of the federal government. Members of this civilian merit class rarely serve in the military and hence may have little understanding of the military they supervise. Concurrent with the rise of the meritocracy, the Goldwater-Nichols Defense Reorganization Act has produced a highly sophisticated and centralized military establishment more willing to assert itself in strategic issues. This monograph examines these assertions and seeks to analyze their validity. The methodology consists of a review of the historic and political legacy that forms the traditional foundation of the countrys concept of civilian control of the military. Special emphasis is placed on the influence of classical liberalism and the ideas of the Federalists and the Jeffersonians. The nations emerging civilian meritocratic leadership class is examined along with its ability to exercise effective control over a sophisticated military establishment. The character and background of the meritocracy is contrasted with the nature of the current U.S.military establishment. The conclusions reached in this monograph suggest that a genuine crisis in civil-military relations does not exist.
- Government and Political Science
- Military Forces and Organizations