Why Nations Differ in Military Skill (And How That Should Affect U.S. Defense Planning)
INSTITUTE FOR DEFENSE ANALYSES ALEXANDRIA VA
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A consistent recent theme sounded by defense policymakers and commentators is the difficulty of planning under conditions of strategic uncertainty. Many worry about the challenge of economic development in potential adversaries coupled with proliferation of advanced conventional weapons. They argue that those trends could place U.S. security at risk by fostering the emergence of regional hegemons or even near-peer competitors. We argue this is not necessarily the case. This is because two often overlooked factors, civil-military relations and culturally-based organizational norms, may act to systematically constrain a recipient countrys ability to attain and maintain the skill needed to take advantage of these assets. We test this hypothesis in a large-n study and present the implications of our findings for defense policy and analysis.
- Personnel Management and Labor Relations
- Government and Political Science
- Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics