Accession Number : ADA328777

Title :   Political-Military Integration; The American Experience.

Corporate Author : AIR WAR COLL MAXWELL AFB AL

Personal Author(s) : Lindell, Jay H.

PDF Url : ADA328777

Report Date : APR 1995

Pagination or Media Count : 43

Abstract : The American political system is that of a liberal democracy. There is an inherent mistrust of a large standing army by the American people. Because of this, there has been considerable friction between political and military leaders on how best to integrate the military in the national security decision making process during peace and war. Prior to World War II, the question was solved during peace by not having a large standing army. Then during war, a successful balance was struck which integrated political and military viewpoints to form national security policy. However, the Cold War upset the balance as the political viewpoint expanded and eventually suffocated the military viewpoint from the national security policy making process. This political enlargement resulted in a military detached from the national security decision process during the Vietnam War. The outcome was a political-military integration failure and a debacle in Vietnam. In the two decades following the Vietnam War, both political and military policy-making viewpoints achieved an unique balance. The balance was attained by several political and military policy corrections to make sure there was 'never again' another Vietnam. The manifestation of political-military balance was the 1991 Persian Gulf War. With the end of the Cold War, the changed political viewpoint, the US must again find the appropriate balance of political and military viewpoints in the national security policy making process. To find the right balance, a relook at past failure and success can give insight into how the appropriate political-military balance can be realized and maintained.

Descriptors :   *POLICIES, *POLITICAL SCIENCE, *NATIONAL SECURITY, *LEADERSHIP, *INTEGRATION, *MILITARY FORCE LEVELS, MILITARY INTELLIGENCE, WARFARE, UNITED STATES, DECISION MAKING, PEACETIME, COLD WAR, BALANCE, FRICTION, PERSIAN GULF WAR, SECOND WORLD WAR, VIETNAM WAR.

Subject Categories : Government and Political Science
      Military Forces and Organizations

Distribution Statement : APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE